From the pulpit: No to fundamentalism; yes to spirituality |

A middle-aged couple who recently showed up at a local progressive church said, “We want to get away from doctrine. Apparently, they had decided that they could no longer bear the literalist Bible teachings of the church they attended.

To anyone who may fall into this category and would like some help in rejecting narrow-minded and misguided literalism, I highly recommend reading “The End of All Things Is At Hand: A Personal Journey From Apocalyptic Fears To historical reality” by Jack Pyle. This book reveals how Pyle, once a staunch pastor of the fundamentalist cult of Herbert W. Armstrong, was slowly compelled by enlightened historical biblical scholarship, coupled with his own integrity, to confront and reject the deceptive and misguided literalism to which he had been submitted.

On the other hand, if you don’t fit into this category, but are skeptical of all things spiritual, you might want to read “After: A Doctor Explores What Death Experiences imminent reveal about life and beyond”.

In this book, Bruce Greyson, MD, makes it clear that there are people in all walks of life who have had startling near-death experiences – experiences that have firmly convinced them that there are realities beyond this. lives that defy the usual rational scientific explanations – experiences that are beautiful, life-affirming and incredibly, even permanently (!) changing. And this is true for people of all faiths and no religion, including atheists who, prior to their experience, were totally convinced that there can be no survival of human consciousness beyond brain death. .

Greyson, a professor of psychiatry, says he intended his book “for those who are curious about the incredible scope of the human mind and the deeper questions regarding life and death” – questions that raised possibilities which he himself found in his careful research. intriguing, challenging and sometimes unanswerable, even irrefutable.

A friend recently told me, “I can’t have a near-death experience. Is there a way for me personally to benefit from such experiences? »

The answer is yes: just start by reading Greyson’s reports of the many interviews he has conducted with people who have had such experiences. Pay attention to what they say, how they say it, and what they still say years later.

Many readers who did are glad they did.

I am one of them.

Boswell is a retired Christian Church pastor (Disciples of Christ) living in Normal. His point of view and his e-mail address are available on

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