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American Poet Says ‘All My Friends Are Finding New Beliefs’

The American poet, Christian Wiman, recently wrote a poem about how all of his friends are finding new beliefs. One turns to Catholicism while another turns to pantheism. A Jewish friend now worships the pantheon of “Paleo, Keto, Zone, South Beach,” and “Bourbon.” Meanwhile, her “Exercise regimens [are] so extreme [that] she merges with machine.” A male friend turns to the god of sex by marrying someone twenty years younger. All of these friends use these gods to cope with the age-old challenges that we all must face: dementia, doubt, despair, and death.

Wiman writes that, “All my friends are finding new beliefs, and I am finding it harder and harder to keep track, of the new gods and the new loves, and the old gods and the old loves.”

Possible Preaching Angle:

Wiman describes our changing religious world. While our culture may be less religious in the traditional sense of Christianity and Judaism, we are no less religious when it comes to the gods of dieting, fitness, and sex. Look beneath the advertising and you’ll see that all of these gods promise immortality in their own way. Age-old needs are being met by new-age beliefs.


Christian Wiman, “All My Friends Are Finding New Beliefs” Poetry Foundation (January, 2020)

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