Buddhism dominates Western States behind Christianity

Largest non-Christian Religions in America by State

Last month the Washington Post published an article* illustrating religion in America today with maps like the one below. If you're interested in the composition of religion in America today, I highly recommend reading it. The data used to created them is from the ASARB, the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies. That site, which provides downloadable data going back to 1952, is also excellent. Those curious about obscure facts and figures will have a field day there. Just … [Read more...]

Happy World Teacher’s Day

It is hard to know where to begin when I think of all of the teachers who have made a positive impact on my life. I can still remember the names of all of my grade-school teachers: Ms. Sharp, Ms. Briggs, Mr. Rodriquez, Ms. Biggs, and Mr. Hanson, along with my music/windsurfing (windsurfing in Montana on a literal pond... not exotic. plus I got an ear infection that took me out for several days) teacher Darcy Schultz (I remember her first name because it was the same as the last name of my grade … [Read more...]

How Reza Aslan made a book about religion a best-seller and what we can learn from it

reza_aslan

As an educator in religious studies I was intrigued by Reza Aslan's book Zealot: the Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth when I first heard about it 2 or 3 weeks ago. I listened to a couple interviews (NPR and HuffPo) and thought, "this is interesting enough, but I don't know if a) this is really groundbreaking work, or b) this is sound scholarship." So I asked some scholars closer to the field and received at best lukewarm responses. I'm not an expert, I haven't read the book, and this is … [Read more...]

Tiptoeing into Ramadan: a Buddhist’s experience of Islam’s holy month

Jama Masjid_OldDelhi

As I mentioned in my last post, this Ramadan I will be joining in The Fasting Project, initiated by Dilshad Ali, the editor for the Muslim Channel here at Patheos and the writer of Muslimah Next Door. I have been paired up with (for support, advice, etc.) Hind Makki of Hindrospectives and she has kindly assembled a handful of informative links and resources to get me started: Last year, I blogged a "Ramadansies" version of my Linksies, with tips on staying healthy and hydrated, FAQs on … [Read more...]

What is Buddhism?

buddha-first-teachings

A friend and colleague in academia, David Webster, recently posted an interesting article on teaching Buddhism to college students. It's called, What Buddhism is Not: Presenting Buddhism to Students in the Twentyfirst Century, and it's short and readable and very much worth a look. He writes of doing a simple web search comparing Buddhism and Islam: I also ran, recently, a google-news search on UK media mentions on Buddhism—which resulted in stories about meditation, music, more meditation … [Read more...]


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