RNA Newsletter
January, 2016
Photo credit: Keith H. Lang
Part of what’s interesting at RNA is that, beyond being a community that’s exploring a religious naturalist orientation, we’re part of the first wave of a new phenomenon in the religious landscape – in gathering mainly online. A central part of this is communication, and we’ve been looking at ways to expand options for sharing thoughts and information.
One part of this is platforms for discussion. The RNA Facebook site has been excellent. It’s generated conversation and has pointed people to interesting books, videos, news, and other resources. But several people have said that, for in-depth or ongoing discussions, they prefer platforms where postings can be read in full (without clicking “See More”) and where the newest memos go to the top and remain visible long-term. RNAnet was set up a few months ago to enable this sort of thing. It had been fairly quiet for a while, but has become more active lately (including a “Whither RNA?” post by Michael Cavanaugh). So, alongside RNA Facebook, we’ll encourage you to also become familiar with RNAnet and to read or join in discussions whenever you like. (As with RNA Facebook, access requires signing up so, if you haven’t done so already, you can sign up by sending a memo to RNAsecretary@aol.com.)
Some members have asked about having online discussions of books that look at religious naturalism and related topics. Since this seems wholly worth doing, and also seems easy and enjoyable, we thought we’d get the ball rolling by suggesting that we might start by discussing a book that looks closely at some central concepts:
     Loyal Rue’s ”Nature is Enough: Religious Naturalism and the Meaning of Life” (with focus on Part 2: Religious Naturalism).
To give people time to read the book, the thought is to wait a month. Then, in the next newsletter, we’ll announce the start of an online discussion (at RNAnet), and everyone who’s interested can join in – to give comments or to just observe where the conversation goes. Future discussion will be based on books or articles that members suggest. So, if you’d like to make a nomination, go to RNAnet (once you join), label your post “Book Selections,” propose your suggestion(s), and see if gets some resonance from the other RNAnet participants.
A final idea (for now) is that, with a number of creative members and as a way of aiding in explorations of RN, we’d like to expand what we started in setting up a Member’s Projects page. Entries, so far, have been occasional. So, now, for those who would like to let other members know what you’re interested in and up to, we urge you to send a brief description, perhaps with links or graphics, to RNAcomments@gmail.com, and we’ll add this to the site.
To conclude, I’ll share a link to a song, with lyrics that echo a theme we’ve been discussing:
“I wouldn’t have noticed if it wasn’t for you . . .”
Todd Macalister
Religious Naturalist Association