TWW Panels – 2017 National Meeting

Possible Topics for Theology Without Walls Panels

2017 National Meeting

The following topics have been suggested for next year’s TWW panels. Please feel free to add, subtract, amend, or extend. Please volunteer for topics that you are prepared to address and/or suggest speakers who would be particularly suitable.  If you have questions, contact me directly.


Love (between persons, between persons and God)

How one recognizes that a text from another tradition has a divine imprint


The meaning of life

The role of narrative


Spiritual But Not Religious


Prayer and meditation

The theological relevance of one’s own life experiences

Revelation outside sacred texts and practices

Relation of TWW to comparative theology

Can a single theological tradition be expanded so as to be adequate to inspired insights       from other traditions?

TWW is normative, a search for theologically adequate answers. Ideally, topics should be reframed as questions, or as clusters of related questions. If you can contribute to that reframing, please do so!

Thanks to all who lend their talents to this important effort!

Jerry L. Martin, Ph.D., D.H.L., former Chair, Department of Philosophy, University of Colorado at Boulder, and Acting Chairman, National Endowment for the Humanities; Coordinator, Theology Without Walls project, American Academy of Religion; author, God: An Autobiography, as Told to a Philosopher (Caladium 2016);

3 thoughts on “TWW Panels – 2017 National Meeting”

  1. Dear Jerry & Colleagues:

    I would like to propose developing a panel re: The theological relevance of one’s own life experiences. In the practical spirit of the TWW initiative, I asked my Religion and Environmental Ethics Class at TCU last week to think about the question: “How has religion made a difference in your life?” I got some very interesting answers–ranging from “being on a journey of honest skepticism” to “a profound sense of connections with others and nature.” I typed up a sheet of “themes/topics” and “transformational experiences” and could send that as an attachment in future correspondence. I’m planning to use this template for further discussion with the students on how they can relate some of these understandings of religion/religious experience to concerns for environmental sustainability. What comes through in several responses is a strong ethical dimension that may have cross cultural relevance–a sense of ardent affection that pressures beyond both human predispositions for self-preservation and amity in everyday life, as well as theological affirmations based on a hope to be realized in another life or the fear of a punishment in this or another life. I would also be happy to share this work-in-progress in connection with a larger panel at the Boston meeting on: What is the meaning of life?

  2. Jerry, I’d be interested in doing a paper on recognizing divine imprint on a text from other traditions.

  3. Colleagues,

    If anyone is interested in forming a panel on “Love (between persons, between persons and God)”, I would be more than happy to join them. That is my current research interest, primarily from a Buddhist (sunyata) and Christian (social Trinitarian) perspective.


    Jon Paul Sydnor

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