Democracy and the Soul of America (Walking with God: The Sermon Series of Howard Thurman, Volume 3)
By: Walter Earl Fluker
Howard Thurman (1899-1981) was one of the leading religious thinkers of 20th century America, a mentor to Martin Luther King, Jr., and other leaders of the civil rights movement, and a mystic who pioneered influential innovations in liturgy, worship, and spirituality.
Thurman’s interest in politics was always, in the words of Vincent Harding, a quest for “a liberating spirituality, a way of exploring and experiencing those crucial life points where personal and societal transformation are creatively joined.”
Here, for the first time in print, are Thurman’s sermon series on the nature of democracy, and American democracy in particular, in which he explores such topics as the meaning of human property in the Declaration of Independence, loyalty oaths and the execution of the Rosenbergs for treason during the Cold War, and the Black Power movement.
Throughout these reflections Thurman explores the strivings of the disinherited, how democratic ideals can enhance individual personhood, and how, as individuals and as citizens, we can deal with the conflicts and inherent contradictions of the democratic common ground.
Walter Earl Fluker, senior editor of The Papers of Howard Washington Thurman and director of the Howard Thurman Papers Project, is Professor Emeritus of Ethical Leadership at Boston University and Dean’s Professor of Spirituality, Ethics, and Leadership at Candler School of Theology.
Peter Eisenstadt, associate editor of The Papers of Howard Washington Thurman, is author of Against the Hounds of Hell: A Life of Howard Thurman.