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What is progressive spirituality?

Progressive spirituality is generally characterised by:


a commitment to pluralism (i.e. the belief that there are multiple paths to the Divine)


a belief in the equality of all people irrespective, for example, of gender, sexuality, race, culture, religious or spiritual tradition  


inclusiveness and welcoming of diversity


a recognition of the importance of mystical experience (i.e. direct personal experience of the Divine) and of individual spiritual autonomy


a view of both nature and the self as embodiments of Divine presence and therefore as sacred


an emphasis on the importance of moving towards an authenticity of being and of enhancing our human capacity for love, kindness and compassion


a search for religious forms which are intellectually credible in the light of modern scientific and psychological knowledge and understanding


a movement away from the literal interpretation of sacred texts


a commitment to genuine, open–minded interfaith dialogue


Compassion grows with the inner recognition that your neighbour shares your humanity with you. This partnership cuts through all walls which might have kept you separate. Across all barriers of land and language, wealth and poverty, knowledge and ignorance, we are one, created from the same dust, subject to the same laws, destined for the same end.

                                          Henri J. M. Nouwen

There are progressive forms of all the major world religions. To find out more about progressive Christianity, see the following:  

Progressive Christianity Network (PCN) Britain at

The Progressive Christianity website at 


For a list of books by progressive Christian writers, click here.  

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