Tackling the elephant in the room of doctrinal exclusivism: Thoughts from a Muslim on Brian D. McLaren’s “Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road”

This post is part of an inter-faith discussion on Brian McLaren’s new book Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed Cross the Road?, hosted at the Patheos Book Club.Reading Brian D. McLaren's Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road: Christian Identity in a Multi-Faith World--which I was invited to review as part of its Patheos Book Club discussion-- has been an enriching experience for me. I found it a profound, thought-provoking and unexpectedly creative m … [Read more...]

Hussein Rashid on LGBT Muslims

Hussein Rashid has a thoughtful piece in Religion Dispatches on the need for the American Muslim community to begin a rather overdue dialogue with its gay members. This is a topic I've often considered trying to gingerly broach, myself. I say "gingerly" because it's a complex topic, and one where it's easy to get co-opted by zealots on one side or another.Taking as his point of departure a controversy over an ad promoting tolerance towards gays that was rejected by a progressive Christian … [Read more...]

Are modern wars really worse, and what does it mean if they’re not?

Below is a very interesting short lecture by a scholar who argues that, contrary to the conventional wisdom, war and violence are in dramatic decline in modern times. He contends that the historical evidence is overwhelmingly against the axiomatic notion that modern wars are worse in quality or frequency than those of premodern times. From the website:Steven Pinker charts the decline of violence from Biblical times to the present, and argues that, though it may seem illogical … [Read more...]