Ok. Semester is almost done. It is all over but the exam marking. Yikes. At least now I know what I am in for.
Needless to say I learned a lot this semester.
There are things I'm going to do differently if I run Intro to Theology again (which I hope I get that opportunity to do). For one thing I'd add a textbook. Yup, you heard right. I'd add a textbook that covered the historical stuff I want to cover. My brief romp through the history of Christian thought was all too quick and if I was supplementing a text reading then I could be more focused on a few key thinkers instead of a broad swathe.
What I wouldn't change much is my Christian Spirituality course. I really liked the way it came together and the way the students engaged with the lectures. Sure I'd tune it a bit here and there, but I think it is a good solid foundation to the study of spiritualities and Christian spiritualities in particular. Those students have a take home exam which comes in Friday after next. Hopefully I'll have all the Intro exams marked so I can focus on those at that time.
I've already started my course prep for next semester. I'm doing Religion, Culture and Diversity which is a second year course. This one is going to be challenging as it is not a course on a specific religion, in fact it is a religion studies course at heart. I will focus on North American religions and in particular those that are purposeful in spreading their ideas/beliefs beyond their cultural settings (Islam, Christianity, and Buddhism) but more because I need to set some limits on the material. The course will be broken into three parts:
1) Theory of Religion - this will have lots of case studies and class discussions.
2) Culture - this will be a brief section on cultural anthropology with a focus on the role of religious imagination in culture.
3) Diversity - this last section will focus on the diverse ways that religions speak into issues of contemporary importance, primarily ecological issues but I'm going to branch out from there. Again, lots of case studies and class discussions.
It should be a fun course.
OK, in the meanwhile I am around. But this time I won't promise to be back blogging. I'm behind still on lots of life stuff. But I'm confident that I'll find a rhythm soon.