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Don Lattin

Religion writer Don Lattin is the author of five books, including one on the Children of God titled, “Jesus Freaks -- A True Story of Murder and Madness on the Evangelical Edge.”

All Stories by Don Lattin

‘The Vietnam Years’: How the conflict ripped the nation’s religious fabric

By Don Lattin — September 8, 2017
(RNS) — America is about to relive the horror and deep divisions spawned by the U.S. war in Vietnam — convulsions that also tore apart the nation’s religious fabric and still echo across the political and cultural landscape.

How San Francisco’s Summer of Love sparked today’s religious movements

By Don Lattin — July 21, 2017
SAN FRANCISCO (RNS) — Anyone who has ever participated in yoga classes, practiced 'mindfulness' meditation, looked into alternative medicine, or referred to oneself as 'spiritual but not religious,' may want to find a 70-year-old hippie this summer and simply say, 'Thank you.'

Lessons learned from Huston Smith’s exploration of religious experience

By Don Lattin — January 6, 2017
(RNS) During his life, Smith came to believe that people turn to religion the way sunflowers bend in the direction of the light.

Study: Drug-induced spiritual experiences help cancer patients

By Don Lattin — December 1, 2016
(RNS) 'Many of the patients,' a researcher observed, 'would say something like, ‘Now I’ve experienced the death of the body, so I’m not so afraid.’ They get through it. They come out the other side.'

Calling all mystics: Clergy psychedelic study aims to awaken spiritual experiences

By Don Lattin — October 22, 2015
(RNS) Twelve subjects will receive psilocybin in living-room-like psychedelic session rooms at NYU in Manhattan and at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore.

Former ‘Jesus freak’ traces the evolution of Christian rock

By Don Lattin — April 17, 2013
(RNS) At age 65, Bob Gersztyn’s religious fervor has mellowed so much that he calls himself an ``allegorical Christian.'' But he has put together his love of pop music and photography to publish "Jesus Rocks the World -- The Definitive History of Contemporary Christian Music.''

Like countless spiritual pilgrims, Esalen Institute faces its own midlife crisis

By Don Lattin — May 29, 2012

(RNS) For 50 years, hundreds of thousands of seekers have come to the Esalen Institute, the incubator of East-meets-West spirituality, looking for news ways to bring together body and soul. Now, the spiritual mecca is facing a bitter dispute over its future, and like the countless pilgrims who have come here, Esalen now faces its own midlife crisis. By Don Lattin.

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