Moralistic Therapeutic Deism
Created by on 6/27/2016 8:47:27 PM

Christian Smith Sociologist Notre Dame University: Souls in Transition

Current generation heavily influenced by a new religion which he labels Moralistic Therapeutic Deism

Christian Smith exposed the sub-cultural ethos of Moralistic Therapeutic Deism (MTD) which he considers a new religion in America (exploitive of Christianity and Judaism). This outlook rules the minds and hearts of teens and young people 18-23 in huge numbers. This online article below is quite revealing and offers a serious concern for church and campus workers alike.

Something heretical lies at the level of deep structure in people’s thinking. It contains a defeater belief for orthodox Christian faith as we preach. Some think that it could be part of the explanation for the exodus (see the EFC report Hemorrhaging Faith pdf) of many teens (3/5) from the church after age fifteen. This is something to ponder and discuss: adolescents may have bought into a different religion ( a therapeutic mythology) while sitting in our pews and Christian education classes! Here’s a link. Christian Smith is a reputable scholar and expert on teen and young adult culture in North America, so he is worth attending to.

http://www.christianpost.com/news/moralistic-therapeutic-deism-the-new-american-religion-6266/

Moralistic Therapeutic Deism

  1.  A god exists who created and ordered the world and watches over human life on earth.
  2.  God wants people to be good, nice, and fair to each other, as taught in the Bible and by most world religions.
  3.  The central goal of life is to be happy and to feel good about oneself.

4.  God does not need to be particularly involved in one's life except when God is needed to   resolve a problem.

5. Good people go to heaven when they die.

MTD is a revisionist faith, which colonizes established religious traditions like Christianity; it is parasitic on orthodoxy. It offers a divinely underwritten personal happiness and interpersonal niceness. Smith writes, “We have come with some confidence to believe that a significant part of “Christiainty” in the United States is actually only tenuously connected to the actual historical Christian tradition, but has rather substantially morphed into Christianity’s misbegotten cousin Moralistic Therapeutic Deism.” I’m going to look into it in more detail.

General American 18-23 Values from Souls in Transiition 

  • soft ontological antirealists
  • epistemological skeptics
  • perspectivalists (various ways to see this; mine is only one)
  • in subjective isolation (my path)
  • constructivists
  • moral intuitionists (feel about a situation or decision)
  • Lots to think about here. See also the Joel Osteen trend towards feel good religion that promises success--recent Christian Research Journal. ~Gord Carkner

print
Campus Ministry Articles

Dec04 Pastor's Library Infrastructure
Created by on 12/4/2015 12:00:00 AM

Libraries offer us many mentors to help us think more deeply and preach more powerfully. We want to...
Read More..

Nov25 Mary's Epiphany of Transcendence
Created by on 11/25/2015 12:00:00 AM

Epiphanies come in various forms, a great work of art, a full moon, or a beautiful sunset. But ther...
Read More..

Nov13 Panel on Future of Higher Educati
Created by on 11/13/2015 12:00:00 AM

Will the humanities survive the pressure of the current job market? Some say that we ignore the lib...
Read More..

Jul21 Twin Heritages: Christ and University
Created by on 7/21/2015 12:00:00 AM

Two Heritages: Christ and University a. What if we could harness the power, resources and cr...
Read More..

Apr08 Summary of Tribes by Seth Godin
Created by on 4/8/2015 12:00:00 AM

This is my summary of insights on leadership by Seth Godin, one of America's super-bloggers. He has...
Read More..

Feb26 Dialogue on Jesus
Created by on 2/26/2015 12:00:00 AM

There exist today in the minds of people many different versions of Jesus. Cultural interpretation...
Read More..

Feb14 Dialogue in Language of the Good
Created by on 2/14/2015 12:00:00 AM

How can we talk about morality these days in a civil, rational manner? Opinions can be strong and ...
Read More..

Feb12 Dialogue on Worldviews
Created by on 2/12/2015 12:00:00 AM

The ability to think, dialogue and examine arguments and evidence within the context of worldview ...
Read More..

Feb08 Robust Evidence and Argument Have Currency
Created by on 2/8/2015 12:00:00 AM

There is a strong heritage of evidence and good argument, a multivalent discourse, to establish th...
Read More..

Feb06 Ben Perrin on Human Slavery
Created by on 2/6/2015 12:00:00 AM

UBC Law Professor Benjamin Perrin on Human Trafficking in Canada: The shocking revelations. 
Read More..

Feb06 Building Bridges to Faith
Created by on 2/6/2015 12:00:00 AM

Building Bridges : This is the beginning of a series on stimulating dialogue with friends and clle...
Read More..

Nov15 Mapping the Arenas of Discipleship in the 21st Century
Created by on 11/15/2014 12:00:00 AM

This is part of the Discipleship Project within Outreach Canada, a think tank on future possibiliti...
Read More..

Oct21 Jesus is the Yes and Amen
Created by on 10/21/2014 12:00:00 AM

In II Corinthians 1, the Apostle Paul writes that Jesus is the  Yes  and the  Amen  to it all. Wha...
Read More..

Oct02 Climate Specialist Katharine Hayhoe October 8 TWU
Created by on 10/2/2014 12:00:00 AM

Top Climate Change Specialist Katharine Hayhoe speaks at TWU in their  Distinguished Lecture Series...
Read More..

Sep16 God Delusion Debate September 22 UB
Created by on 9/16/2014 12:00:00 AM

Read More..

Aug22 Moralistic Therapeutic Deism
Created by on 8/22/2014 12:00:00 AM

Commentary by a top sociologist on today's Young adult culture in the USA.
Read More..

Jul19 Nihilism and the Incarnation
Created by Outreach Tech Services on 7/19/2014 12:00:00 AM

This article is the concluding section of a 70 page article on Recovery from the Slumber of Nihilis...
Read More..

Jul08 Summer Reading for the Curious Cranium
Created by on 7/8/2014 12:00:00 AM

Here are some suggested titles for summer reading which include devotional, sharp theology, and worl...
Read More..

Apr29 Mission Statement: the Power of Focus
Created by on 4/29/2014 12:00:00 AM

This article focuses on the importance of developing a Personal Mission Statement. This concept w...
Read More..

Apr12 Where Are the Prophets in 2014?
Created by on 4/12/2014 12:00:00 AM

Do we still have prophets in the twenty-first century? What do they look like? What are they saying...
Read More..