Can You Be Both a Religious Liberal and a Political Conservative?

Rasor

Religious Liberals (sometimes called "Religious Progressives") are open to growing, changing, and evolving based on new evidence, insights, and experiences. In contrast, Religious Conservatives tend to resist changing, growing, and evolving even when new facts come to light. Theological conservatives tend to preserve traditions, current social structures, and long-standing community ties that can be undermined if innovation comes too rapidly. But can you be a religious liberal and a political c … [Read more...]

The Future of Islam

SpeaksforIslam

In August, I blogged about “Tectonic Shifts in the Global Religious Landscape” on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the beginning of World World I. One hundred years later we see, in the words of historian Philip Jenkins, that the end of the Ottoman empire in the aftermath of World War I — and with it the “effective end of the Islamic caliphate” — radically affected Islam (26):As a political force, Islam in 1914 was inconceivably weaker than it is today. There were perhaps 240 millio … [Read more...]

Jewish Readings of Christian Scripture: Parables as Deeds Not Creeds

short

Yesterday I posted about "Reading the Same Text Differently with Jews & Christians Read" about the ways Christians have often appropriated Jewish scripture in a way that does not fully appreciate the ways that Jews understand their own texts in very differently. In this post, I am turning the tables to consider Jewish readings of Christian scripture — in particular, Jesus’ parables. The inspiration for this post is a new book, Short Stories by Jesus: The Enigmatic Parables of a Controv … [Read more...]

Reading the Same Text Differently with Jews & Christians

martin

This post is about the ways Christians have often appropriated Jewish scripture in a way that does not fully appreciate the ways that Jews understand their own texts in very differently. In my next post, I will turn the tables to consider Jewish readings of Christian scripture. Isaiah's Context (8th-century B.C.E.) Imagine that you are atttending a Jewish Saturday morning services. A young woman, who is becoming a bat mizvah (“a daughter of the covenant”), ascends the steps to the bimah (the el … [Read more...]

The Meaning of the Daodejing (Tao Te Ching) for Today

Palmer

Parker Palmer, in his modern spiritual classic A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey Toward an Undivided Life relates the classic Daoist tale known as “The Woodcarver”:A master carver, made a bell stand of precious wood. When it was finished, all who saw it were astounded. They said it must be the work of spirits. The Prince of Lu said to the master carver: “What is your secret?” He replied: “I am only a workman: I have no secret. There is only this: When I began to think about the work you co … [Read more...]

Eve Was Framed, the Serpent Was Right!

Eve Was Framed

On August 13, 1971, the cover of LIFE Magazine featured an image of two women standing side-by-side. On the right, an classical painted image of a tall naked woman stands head-and-shoulders above a modern woman, who is fully dressed. The figure on the right is clearly the biblical figure of Eve, as she is covered only by a strategically-placed fig leaf and is holding an apple. The modern feminist beside her holds a sign that says, “EVE WAS FRAMED.” Eve was framed. But in this post, I would like t … [Read more...]


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