Advisory Board

Professor Loyal D. Rue

Loyal D. Rue, Ph.D. is Professor of Religion and Philosophy at Luther College of Decorah, Iowa, and focuses on naturalistic theories of religion.
Two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction, Edward O. Wilson writes about Loyal’s Religion is Not About God — “This book is an important step towards the naturalistic, hence truly general theory of religion. It harmonizes contemporary scientific understanding of the origin of human nature with a positive view of the centrality of religious culture.”
Loyal has in his writings and teaching been a leading proponent of Religious Naturalism and its environmentalism — “Religious Naturalists will be known for their reverence and awe before Nature, their love for Nature and natural forms, their sympathy for all living things, their guilt for enlarging the ecological footprints, their pride in reducing them, their sense of gratitude directed towards the matrix of life, their contempt for those who abstract themselves from natural values, and their solidarity with those who link their self-esteem to sustainable living.”
In the epilogue of Everybody’s Story, Loyal writes, “There is nothing in the substance of everybody’s story to rule out belief in the reality of a personal deity. At the same time, such a belief is not an essential part of everybody’s story. There will be theistic versions of the story, and there will be non-theistic versions as well. Those who take the theistic option will have at their disposal a range of images that may be used to arouse motivational systems. But I have confidence that everybody’s story, unadorned by theological imagery, has the potential to arouse us to serve its imperatives. Let us see.”
Loyal earned his B.A. at the University of Minnesota, his M.Div. at Luther Theological Seminary, and his Ph.D. at Hartford Seminary. He has been awarded two John Templeton Foundation fellowships. He also authored By the Grace of Guile: The Role of Deception in Natural History and Human Affairs and Amythia: Crisis in the Natural History of Western Culture.
Watch Loyal Rue: Religion Is Not About God, Loyal Rue (1 of 2) – Beyond Belief 2006, and Loyal Rue (2 of 2) – Beyond Belief 2006.