God Realization (Sincere Non-Religious Spiritual Literature) discussion

Role of Fiction in Spirituality

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message 1: by Jesse (new)

Jesse Hanson (jesseshanson) | 13 comments Mod
What are your feelings about the potential of Fiction as a credible medium for expressing bona fide Spirituality

message 2: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Bowen (andrew_bowen) | 2 comments Fiction plays a central role in religion/spirituality due to its use as a teaching/learning tool for the devotee. In virtually every text, metaphor and parable are utilized in this way. This is the primary method by which my fiction is written; not by way of preaching some subjective truth, but by presenting spritual matters as they truly exist in the gritty reality we call "life."

message 3: by Judy (new)

Judy Croome (judycroome) Jesse, I've just seen this thread. I'm so glad to hear your and Andrew's thoughts on this. I too believe that fiction can be central to learning about faith/spirituality. It's a difficult path, because it's so easy to slip into "preaching" rather than story-telling. I also think there is a huge need "out there"; readers who want to explore spirituality and faith (and religion) but not in a formal way. Fiction is the ideal vehicle for this.
Judy Croome
South Africa

message 4: by Jesse (new)

Jesse Hanson (jesseshanson) | 13 comments Mod
Andrew and Judy, I appreciate both of your comments very much. I really look forward to finding the time to look into your work. It's so encouraging when I learn of new people with a vision about spiritual fiction. I especially enjoyed both of your comments regarding preaching.

message 5: by James (new)

James Rourke | 2 comments As a teacher I have, for a number of years, asked students to define the word myth. Their answers tend to fall into tw categories (1) stories that aren't real designed to entertain or (2) attempts to explain the physical world by people who did not have modern science. When offered with the idea that myths don't contain facts but may contain truths they are often perplexed. After some discussion they see that myths were and can still be used to wrestle with aching questions pertaining to meaning, purpose, relationships, ect. In this regard, to use Judy's words, myths allow for the exploration of big questions that, in fact, the kids want to discuss but often can find no place to have the discussion. Spiritual or visionary fiction can be used to, very effectively, fill that void.

message 6: by Judy (new)

Judy Croome (judycroome) @Jesse: Yes, it is encouraging to know others are walking the same path! :)

@James: it's good to know that young minds - the minds that will shape the future - are actively seeking to find answers to the big questions. Although I don't write YA fiction, this encourages me to persevere in my writing because those young seekers will, one day, become adult seekers.
Judy Croome, South Africa

message 7: by Nakh (new)

Nakh | 1 comments This is a great discussion - I like the idea of narrative - in fact it triggered me thinking of another book to add to the group list.

message 8: by Tracey-anne (new)

Tracey-anne McCartney It is quite baffling how spiritual fiction hasn't been recognised as a genre - hopefully that will change :o) Wouldn't it be wonderful to read all the amazing stories that uplift in a small way.

I have completed my first manuscript, and to be honest, I would class it more as - a spiritual romance / new adult fiction, but it slots (as with most I guess) into Urban Fantasy/Paranormal Romance.

I think initially, the idea puts people/Agents/Publishers off, perhaps believing they will be preached to/that the writer is exercising some religious dogma. That isn't the case, it is actually about growth, which characters in all genres go through.

It's wonderful to have found a group on Goodreads.
Lovely to connect with you all.
Love and light, Trace

message 9: by James (new)

James Rourke | 2 comments @ Tracey-anne

Your comments mirror my own experiences. I have a work of spiritual fiction that was published when we switched our pitch to publishers from spiritual fiction to YA Adventure. I also think you hit the proverbial nail on the head when you said, "...it is actually about growth,...." Absolutely correct!

Be Well,


message 10: by Stefan (new)

Stefan Emunds (stefanemunds) The fiction part of spiritual fiction is a catalyst to promote spiritual wisdom. It's like a gift wrap.

message 11: by Stefan (new)

Stefan Emunds (stefanemunds) After reading a 'mechanical' translation of the Genesis I concluded that the Bible is highly allegorical and belongs to the genre spiritual fiction as well. I give you an example: Moses leading Israel out of Egypt towards the Promised Land is the allegory of our awakened spiritual consciousness leading our personality out of a materialistic state-of-mind to a spiritual one. The pharaoh is our ego, the usurper of personality who tries everything to hold us back.

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