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RELS 306 The Spiritual Journey

What is the difference between religion and spirituality? This class explores some of the literature on spirituality by identifying common themes in a diversity of readings. Students work with those themes analytically and have opportunities to share personal responses to the readings. Key issues include how people come to know the divine, names people give the divine, dimensions of the inward experience, mystery and complexity, disciplines of ritual and practice, and ethical and social concerns.
4 Undergraduate credits

Effective February 3, 2000 to present

Meets graduation requirements for

Learning outcomes


  • Analyze commonalities among spiritual experiences, practices and understanding in various religious traditions.
  • Identify some central themes in understanding different expressions of spirituality.
  • Recognize some of the ways that social categories(i.e. race, gender, class, sexual orientation, disabilities) shape human religious experience as they shape other dimensions of human life.
  • Reflect on and find ways to better articulate one's understanding of one's religious commitments and practices.

Minnesota Transfer Curriculum

Goal 6: The Humanities and Fine Arts

  • Demonstrate awareness of the scope and variety of works in the arts and humanities.
  • Understand those works as expressions of individual and human values within a historical and social context.
  • Respond critically to works in the arts and humanities.
  • Engage in the creative process or interpretive performance.
  • Articulate an informed personal reaction to works in the arts and humanities.

Goal 7: Human Diversity

  • Understand the development of and the changing meanings of group identities in the United States' history and culture.
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the individual and institutional dynamics of unequal power relations between groups in contemporary society.
  • Analyze their own attitudes, behaviors, concepts and beliefs regarding diversity, racism, and bigotry.
  • Describe and discuss the experience and contributions (political, social, economic, etc.) of the many groups that shape American society and culture, in particular those groups that have suffered discrimination and exclusion.
  • Demonstrate communication skills necessary for living and working effectively in a society with great population diversity.