I have picked up a new (to me) book — or rather I have downloaded it onto my e-reader.

It is by somebody named Leslie Stevenson and it is called Open to New Light: Quaker Spirituality in Historical and Philosophical Context.

I was wondering if anyone else has had any experience with this book?

Views: 145

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Hello, David McKay!I haven't read the new book.  For better or for worse, I worry more about our closed attitude toward "old" light!

My work lately has been directed at describing and analyzing the traditional Conservative Quaker faith and inquiring about its relationship to current (especially Biblical) scholarship and church history, all with a good dose of critical evaluation.

Having expressed these reservations, I would like to know more about the author's take on Quaker spirituality.  Groan, another book to buy!

So thus far (I'm not very far in yet) we have the preface — which seems a fairly reductionist approach to mapping out the territory of the book. He is defining "spirituality" in terms of seven categories derived analytically from… someplace. His seven categories make perfect sense I'm just not convinced of the method there and I would probably want to add stuff to it. But that's just the preface and he's obviously got the training of philosopher rather than a student of spirituality per se.

Chapter 1 begins with the ancient Greeks. He's doing a historical as well as a philosophical analysis of the subject matter. And his focus so far has been Plato and Socrates. We seems to take from Socrates is an insistence that inquiry be open ended. He also notes Socrates claim to hear a voice which never told him what to do but often told him what not to do.

If I were to predict where this is going to go — and he doesn't seem to be trying to hold his cards close to his chest — I would say that he's going to argue that Quakerism — whether or not you buy the whole inner light thing — is a viable and even preferable spiritual path simply because the doctrine of inner light tends to result in people who are going to be open-minded about new learnings.

But as I said — I'm not very far along yet.

Of course light isn't new.  It just takes time to reach us from its source. 

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Support Us

Did you know that QuakerQuaker is 100% reader supported? If you think this kind of outreach and conversation is important, please support it with a monthly subscription or one-time gift.


You can also make a one-time donation.

Latest Activity

Peter S. Krynski replied to Mike Shell's discussion '“On Mediation” by Mary Klein'
"Love the article and the portrait of Jacob Nayler, titled The Great Deceiver, the False Messiah,…"
yesterday
Mike Shell posted discussions
6th day (Fri)
Patricia Dorland liked Iris Graville's blog post Worship-Sharing Through Song
3rd day (Tue)
Matthew Callow posted an event

Britain Yearly Meeting at University of Bath

8th mo. 1, 2020 at 9:30am to 8th mo. 7, 2020 at 1:30pm
Listening, prophecy and reconciliation: allyship in a climate emergencyJoin us for a week of…See More
1st month 13
Matthew Callow replied to Scott Martin's discussion 'Some Thoughts on Meeting Committee Structure' in the group Liberal Quakers
"I am the Clerk of my Area [Monthly] Meeting Nominations Committee and we fill the pastoral roles…"
1st month 12
William F Rushby posted a discussion

Faith: The Great Big Puzzle

Matthew Callow commented at the end of his discourse on liberal British Quakerism: "It often feels…See More
1st month 12
Kirby Urner replied to Kirby Urner's discussion 'Is Semite Really a Synonym for Jewish?'
"Thanks for jumping in Mackenzie. I can see where the word "anti-semite" would appeal to…"
1st month 8
Mackenzie replied to Kirby Urner's discussion 'Is Semite Really a Synonym for Jewish?'
"In the context of the word "antisemite," yes, it definitely is a synonym for Jewish. My…"
1st month 7

© 2020   Created by QuakerQuaker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service