Since the 1960s, many Americans embraced the personal and experiential aspect of religion, even as their allegiance to religious institutions and particular doctrines lessened. This enthusiasm for spirituality involved openness to a variety of different religious traditions, and interest in mining other traditions for their spiritual insight. However, while certain aspects of this enthusiasm for spirituality were unprecedented, it was not an entirely new phenomenon. As this introduction explains, some of the roots of this awakening to spirituality can be traced to the New England Puritans, and especially to those like Anne Hutchinson, whose experience of the Holy Spirit challenged ministerial and governmental authority.
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