Upcoming Events

Jesus Seminar on the Road
Feb 8-9, 2019
Jesus Seminar on the Road
Feb 22-23, 2019
Jesus Seminar on the Road
Mar 8-9, 2019
Jesus Seminar on the Road
Mar 15-16, 2019
National Meeting
Mar 20-23, 2019

Begun in 2013, the Christianity Seminar aims to rewrite the history of early Christianity. The scholars of the seminar have broken through to new understandings of many disparate movements in the first four centuries of the Common Era, and are working on their first major book.

The academic Seminar on God and the Human Future began its work in 2013. Inspired by the pioneering research and public notice of the Jesus Seminar, it has attracted over thirty participating Research Fellows who are exploring new ways for thinking about God in a post-theistic context.

Welcome to Westar Institute

Westar Institute — home of the Jesus Seminar — is dedicated to fostering and communicating the results of cutting-edge scholarship on the history and evolution of the Christian tradition, thereby raising the level of public discourse about questions that matter in society and culture.


On Saturday morning the Sabbath peace (Shabbat Shalom) was shattered in the Tree of Life Synagogue in the Squirrel Hill area of Pittsburgh. The first reports were gruesome: at least 11 people were dead, several police officers wounded. A morning celebration of a bris with 60 to 100 people was devastated by gunfire. Some hours [...]

Preface: The Displacement of Theology

/in Forum (Academic Journal) 

The articles included in this issue of Forum are among the first to come from Westar’s academic seminar on “God and the Human Future.” The seminar began its work in 2013, and in what should be clear by what follows, represents something of a departure for Westar. Whereas previous academic seminars were concerned primarily with the ancient world and rooted in historical scholarship (though always with the mission of communicating to the public very much in mind), the God Seminar is much more philosophical [...]


/in The Fourth R (Magazine) /by 

Lacunae, or gaps, in extra-canonical texts are frustrating — not just because reconstruction can be difficult if not impossible, but also because of the way they leave the message of the text hanging in places where further exposition would be helpful! Contrast this to some of the canonical Biblical books which often have multiple copies of the same text. Yet canonical texts have their holes too, and lacunae can serve as visual reminders of the holes we cannot see.

Love Beyond Belief

/Polebridge Press/in  /by 

Book cover for Love Beyond Belief by Thandeka


Finding the Access Point to Spiritual Awareness

Using insights from the brain science of emotions, Love Beyond Belief: Finding the Access Point to Spiritual Awareness narrates two millennia of lost-and-found stories about love beyond belief as the access point to the heart and soul of spiritual life.