From the article:
"What, exactly, is open source religion? It's the cutting edge of individual spirituality that's thriving outside the walls of organized religion. It's a historic shift in power and authority from religious leadership to the consumer-oriented adherents of religious movements."The group consisted of Jews, Muslims, Methodists, Agnostics, even Atheists. And they spent a lot of time talking about their deepest religious experiences. As I read the article, I kept thinking, "Judges." Everyone doing what is right in their own eyes. And I thought: "Where did all those people go who had some emotional or intellectual connection to their, um, faith tradition, but rejected the organized version of it?" And here is part of the answer. They are out there, and out there eager to explore Something that is calling to them. And here the language of religion asserts itself:
This is cooking without a recipe. This is reinventing the wheel, except the wheel is not round and doesn't work very well. And there are problems that are gong to smack these people upside the head. The biggest problem is Certainty, the claim to which may have driven them from their religious traditions to begin with.
"...So, faith matters deeply to us -- but the reality of open source religion is that we, as Americans, expect to be able to crack open the doors of religion and chart our own individual meaningful journeys through the resources and traditions we find there."
The article is honest enough to admit as much:
The truth is, many--even most--Christians indulge in open source religion to some extent. It may not extend to heresy, and it may be born simply of ignorance. But how many of us "tinker" with our faith, adding, subtracting, and editing like some theological Thomas Jefferson until we come up with a designer religion of our own? Yet part of the long , satisfying journey for me has been coming to understand and appreciate what Scripture and the Confessions are actually saying. But to do that took a rather severe humbling of attitude and spirit before I had ears to hear.
"Team members did point out real dangers in throwing open the doors of religious tradition. For instance, more than a few people asked: If our Ultimate Source is open to everyone's interpretation, then how can we trust that the timeless tradition won't change?"
It is a thrill for me to meet a faithful Lutheran who knows her catechism, Large and Small. It is a delight to have a conversation with someone I share a Faith Tradition with (I smirk just a little. Ok. I smirk a LOT.) about the Divine Service, the Confessions, or even that day's lectionary readings. It is good that it is a thrill, but it shouldn't be a thrill simply because it is so rare.
HT to dpulliam of GetReligion