Bachelor of Arts
Humanities and Cultural Studies
Department or Program Chair
Chase B. Clow, PhD
Gay Lynch, PhD
Religions and their prayer practices are an integral part of the history of our world and are an important source of community and individual spiritual development. Religions serve as a community resource for compassion and empathy toward others, an organizing force for community wellness and solidarity, and a safe haven to explore one’s own spiritual journey and purpose in life. There are emotional, moral, logical, and spiritual aspects to all religious traditions and when we have an understanding of not only that which we believe and practice, but also an understanding of that which others believe and practice, we can begin to see a pattern in what we have in common – at home and across the globe. As noted by Diana Eck, in her “Harvard Thinks Big: Religion in the Age of Pluralism” 2012 address, “Religious literacy is critical, not just for those of us who make a business of it, and not just for those of us who think of ourselves as spiritual or religious, but for all of us, no matter what you intend to do in life or where you intend to live.”
By increasing religious literacy, my project addresses the need for people of many (or no) faiths to come together and create what we might call a multi-faith public square. Two ways of accomplishing this is through scholarly investigation and through sharing insights as a result of religious practices. Whichever means are used, the most important things we can learn from people of other religions is about people of other religions, in order to develop enriching relationships with them as neighbors and citizens.
George-Davidson, Leona, "For Praying Out Loud: An Exploration of Religious Traditions & Their Prayer Practices" (2014). Senior Theses. 53.