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The Encyclopedia of Religious and Spiritual Development is the first reference work to focus on the developmental process of religion and spirituality across the human life span. Spiritual development is an important part of human development that has links to identity development, moral development, and civic engagement. This innovative Encyclopedia offers insight into the characteristics of people and their contexts that interact to influence religious and spiritual development over time. Editors Elizabeth M. Dowling and W. George Scarlett provide readers with glimpses into the religious and spiritual developmental trajectories of people from all over the world, from many different religious and spiritual backgrounds.
This compendium of brief essays on some of the major topics associated with religion and spirituality is informative and erudite, but by no means exhaustive in its selection of topics or complete in their treatment. Practically all the scholars included are of the Judeo-Christian tradition. The list of leading religious and spiritual figures consists only of those associated with the Abrahamic faiths and Buddha. Not all Christian denominations have an entry. On the other hand, there are articles on some major organizations, such as the Sierra Club and UNICEF; places of religious significance; and key concepts and practices, like rituals, yoga, and prayer. This book deserves a place in every library because it is a rich source of insight and information on topics of growing relevance and interest. Perhaps it may be taken as the prototype of a multivolume encyclopedia on this very vast subject."