Fellowship: Biola University’s Center for Christian Thought

Biola University’s Center for Christian Thought, through the help of a generous grant from the John Templeton Foundation, invites applications for multiple semester- and year-long residential research fellowships for the 2013–2014 academic year. Fellowship recipients will comprise an interdisciplinary group of approximately eight researchers per semester focused on the theme “Psychology and Spiritual Formation.”

This RFP is focused on what light contemporary psychology sheds on the processes of spiritual formation as understood by the Christian tradition. The aim of this theme is to bring relevant psychological research into meaningful conversation with theological research concerning Christian spiritual formation. Particular focus will be given to recent work in the cognitive science of religion, positive psychology, and mindfulness research. The questions to be pursued include:

  • How do deliverances of contemporary cognitive psychology, positive psychology, mindfulness research, and other relevant areas of psychology shed light on the processes underlying spiritual formation?
  • Can we distinguish, either theologically and/or psychologically, character formation brought about by the Holy Spirit from character formation apart from the Holy Spirit?
  • What activities seem best suited to cultivate spiritual formation?
  • What sort of barriers impede spiritual formation and what sort of developmental process might one expect when it comes to spiritual formation?

Proposal requests will be for $70,000 to $90,000 (plus a housing stipend and relocation expenses for those relocating) for projects lasting the full academic year and $35,000 to $45,000 (plus a housing stipend and relocation expenses for those relocating) for projects lasting one semester that academic year. Fellows will be in residence at Biola University for either the fall term (August 23, 2013 to December 20, 2013) or the spring term (January 27, 2014, to May 24, 2014) or both.

During the course of the year, fellows will have the opportunity to interact with visiting scholars at the Center’s roundtable meetings. Visitors this year will include:

  • Justin Barrett, School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary
  • John Coe, Institute for Spiritual Formation, Talbot School of Theology
  • Siang-Yang Tan, School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary
  • Dallas Willard, Department of Philosophy, University of Southern California
  • Everett Worthington, Department of Psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University

Application deadline: November 1, 2012. For more information, visit our website at cct.biola.edu

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