Blame Religion for Its Own Defeats

“It is customary to blame secular science and anti-religious philosophy for the eclipse of religion in modern society. It would be more honest to blame religion for its own defeats. Religion declined not because it was refuted, but because it became irrelevant, dull, oppressive, insipid. When faith is completely replaced by creed, worship by discipline, [Read More...]

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Depicting Jesus and Buddha

Today’s Bizarro cartoon takes a look at how we depict important figures. What do you think about this topic when considered in a more serious way? How has the openness of Buddhists and Christians to depicting the key figures in their traditions impacted the way people think about them? Has the prohibition against depicting Muhammad helped safeguard his [Read More...]

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Christian Diversity and Love of Enemies

“Christianity has always been diverse, and has long been plagued by a tendency toward reciprocal condemnation and exclusion of others who have different opinions than our own, as we have proved time and again to be unable to apply the demand of Jesus that we love our enemies to those who are ‘enemies’ only of [Read More...]

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What the Bible Says

One of my first posts on this blog, after it moved from its original self-hosted location to Blogger back in 2007, was on this topic. Here is what I wrote: This is just a short entry, just to share a further illustration of how the Bible is mythologized, personalized and in some cases deified by well-meaning but [Read More...]

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Left Behind and Right Wing Conspiracy Theories

Fred Clark recently posted on the connection between the Left Behind series and Right Wing conspiracy theories. The two overlap extensively, with the non-religious leaving out the Rapture, but overlap in many other particulars, such as that the United Nations is a bad thing, and so too would world peace be. This while various news [Read More...]

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Anti-Evolutionism as Stumbling Block

This came to my attention via the Facebook page Science Meets Faith, and I thought it worth sharing here. “I am a Christian and recognize that the evidence for evolution is overwhelming. It is a discovery, much like Copernicus’ theory of heliocentricity, Newton’s theory of gravity and Einstein’s theories of relativity, and definitely not a [Read More...]

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Ten Commandments to Avoid Extinction

A provocative video by Michael Dowd. Don’t just fast forward to the commandments, as interesting and as important as they are. The introduction is also full of great insights and memorable quotes. [Read more...]

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Sarcasm is my Spiritual Gift

The title of this post comes from something that a church member said in a discussion of spiritual gifts in Sunday school a while back. I think it would make a great t-shirt. While acknowledging that the phrase “spiritual gifts” adds things not present in the Greek used by Paul, we still explored what the [Read More...]

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Jewish Christianity and the Origins of Islam #CFP

I had the above video of a roundtable discussion of “Jewish Christianity and the Origins of Islam” drawn to my attention. It took place at last year’s ASMEA conference. Apparently the topic will be a focus again next year, and so there is a call for papers that is currently open that some of you may [Read More...]

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Global Intersections of Religion Race and Culture

The video above is from the latest in this year’s Religion Seminar public lecture series, co-sponsored by Butler University, Christian Theological Seminary, and the Desmond Tutu Center. It features Elizabeth Shakman Hurd, with Edwin Curtis and Frank Thomas as respondents. [Read more...]

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The Marrakesh Declaration: Religious Minorities in Muslim Lands

If you haven’t heard yet, a statement has been issued by a group of hundreds of Muslim scholars, called the Marrakesh Declaration, on the subject of religious minorities in predominantly Muslim countries. After an extensive preamble explaining the context and background, the group does the following: Call upon Muslim scholars and intellectuals around the world to [Read More...]

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