When it was first published in 1902, The Varieties of Religious Experience caused a revolution, a quantum leap, a paradigm shift. James opened the door to the scientific study of religious experience, probing the relationship between religion and psychology. It is obvious no one can have a religious experience without brain activity. The salient question is whether this brain activity is the mediator or creator of the experience. This classic text by William James should be required reading for anyone wanting to study religion. But years of college teaching convinced the author that this is a daunting read for most undergraduate students, and even for some older adults. Ron parsed sections of James’ text and provides commentary and insight on each one throughout this must-read book, thus opening the world of James like never before.
Ron Miller received his PhD in Comparative Religions from Northwestern University. He holds five earned degrees and has studied in Germany and Israel, as well as in the United States. He has lectured at hundreds of churches, synagogues, and mosques throughout the United States. He is the chair of the Religion Department at Lake Forest College in Lake Forest, Illinois, where he has taught for more than thirty years. Ron is cofounder of Common Ground, an adult education center of interreligious study and dialogue since 1975. Miller is the author of many books and articles, including Healing the Jewish-Christian Rift (Skylight Paths), The Hidden Gospel of Matthew (Skylight Paths), The Gospel of Thomas: A Guidebook for Spiritual Practice (Skylight Paths), The Sacred Writings of Paul (Skylight Paths), Dialogue and Disagreements: Franz Rosenzweig s Contribution to Jewish-Christian Dialogue (University Press of America), and Unpacking the Parables: The Wisdom Teachings of Jesus (Evan Blake Publishers). For more information on Ron Miller, visit ronmillersworld.org.