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(RNS) — A growing number of Americans do not follow a religion.
But chances are that the details of their lives — from their phones and their politics to their dinner plates and how they raise their kids — are still ruled by some sort of a religious impulse, says author David Zahl.
Zahl - Founder - Christian - Mockingbird - Ministries
Zahl is the founder of the popular nondenominational Christian Mockingbird Ministries project, which formed 12 years ago to reach out to young adults who felt they had been “burned” by the church. His most recent book, “Seculosity: How Career, Parenting, Technology, Food, Politics, and Romance Became Our New Religion and What to Do About It,” suggests that American culture is not actually becoming more secular at all.
It’s simply becoming more religious about more things, with people increasingly attaching their natural yearning to feel like enough to more and more things.
Someone - Tick - Way - Righteousness - Play
“If you want to understand what makes someone tick, or why they’re behaving the way they are, trace the righteousness in play, and things will likely become clear,” he writes.
Zahl, who also works for the Christ Episcopal Church in Charlottesville, Virginia, spoke to Religion News Service about the secular religiosities he sees ruling people’s lives and anxieties. This interview has been edited for clarity and length.
Seculosity - World
Can you define “seculosity” and how you see it play out in the world around you?
It’s a mashup of secular and religiosity. It really refers to what I call religious devotion or religious feeling or even the impulse when it’s directed at earthly rather than heavenly objects. But also I wanted didn’t want to ascribe belief in something divine or supernatural. So that’s why I chose the word seculosity.
Parent - Codes - Behavior - People - Something
Especially as a young parent, I would see codes of behavior, people clinging to something that’s righteous. There’s an orthodox way and almost like a heretical way...
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