RAAC IUPUI > Search Resources > Spiritual but not Religious: Making Spirituality in America

Spiritual but not Religious: Making Spirituality in America

When people call themselves “spiritual,” what does that mean? This introductory course answers that question by exploring the wide range of ideas, practices, and desires that have come
to make up the concept of spirituality. Inviting students to consider why spirituality seems “not religious,” this course examines such phenomena as yoga, faith healing, hip hop, shopping, self-help books, psychology, surveys, and protest movements. By studying these sites of spirituality, this course will enable students to recognize how Americans have made sense of their own lives and institutional attachments through continually changing technologies of race, pluralism, science, capitalism, and secularism.


This syllabus was created for the Young Scholars in American Religion program.

Daniel Vaca

Brown University

Private College or University
Institution Type

Resource Type

Intro, Undergraduate Course
Class Type

Date Published

Religious Studies

General Comparative Traditions, New Religious Movements
Religous Tradition

Business/Capitalism/Labor, Gender/Women/ Sexuality, Pluralism/Secularism/Culture Wars, Race/Ethnicity, Science/Technology/Environment

Link to Resource