Westernized Zen and the art of hiding sexual abuse

So many details will sound terribly familiar. At the heart of the news story is a powerful religious patriarch, surrounded by disciples who view him with a reverence that helps support an iron-clad climate of silence and secrecy. In this case, however, the leader is Joshu Sasaki Roshi, one of the most famous Zen Buddhist [Read More...]

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Water-sipping and pro-life activism. A tale of media coverage.

Last month, we covered the perennial problem of why the March for Life gets the coverage it does (or doesn’t get the coverage it doesn’t get). And various journalists responded that, well, the March for Life isn’t big news, particularly after 40 years, and that the crowds aren’t that big of a deal when compared [Read More...]

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Turkson wouldn’t be first African pope

Yesterday morning a Lutheran friend sent me an email joking that he was “off Team Turkson” on account of Turkson campaigning for the job of pope. That would be Ghana’s Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson. Now, I realize just how unseemly it is for a churchman to campaign for any job but this may be [Read More...]

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Palinphobia hurts journalism

The Washington Post published something yesterday that it shouldn’t have. Why? Because it was false, as in fake. Nevertheless, it’s worth highlighting here for the lessons we can learn from it. The piece was headlined: Sarah Palin’s Plan to Reach Millions of Devoutly Religious People Through al Jazeera It’s since been completely rewritten — because [Read More...]

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Cardinal Dolan dares to tweak the NYTimes

If you’ve paid attention to religion news at all in recent days, you probably know that the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has responded to the latest attempt by the White House (.pdf here) to draw a legal line between religious liberty in church pews and freedom of religious expression in the marketplace and the [Read More...]

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Covering opposition to syncretism in a syncretized world

There is nothing more fun about being a confessional Lutheran than explaining our position on syncretistic worship to those who aren’t. I kid, it’s not fun at all. See, the world embraces syncretism. The general idea is, it goes without saying, that all religions are good and valid and different paths to understanding the same [Read More...]

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GetReligion turns nine: Thoughts on comments and trolls

So, friends and neighbors, if we are going to do some intense navel-gazing here at GetReligion (nine years into this project), then I will assume that it’s fair game to briefly pay some attention to a different set of navels. So a blogger named Baldur Bjarnason decided to do a bit of reflecting on the [Read More...]

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SPLC to get Sarah Palin treatment any day now

I want to talk about media coverage of the man who was convicted today of shooting up the Family Research Council. But let’s first go back to the horrible story about the murderous rampage that one disturbed individual went on in Arizona. The mainstream media narrative, initially, was that a right wing Tea Party supporter [Read More...]

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