Worship, Pagan and Otherwise

A friend forwarded an excerpt of an e-mail Q&A; with Bishop John Shelby Spong. The excerpt dealt with worship – in particular, the questioner felt like the word “worship” was an inappropriate label for their church services. He recommended calling them “celebrations” instead.In his response, Bishop Spong pointed out that changing what you call the service won’t matter if you still approach God as some great disconnected Other out there. He said:If worship is to have meaning, it will be found … [Read more...]

Ecological Psychology

Here’s a rather long piece from the New York Times Magazine titled “Is There an Ecological Unconscious?” It deals with “the notion that evolution endowed humans with a craving for nature.” Apparently this concept is somewhat controversial among professional psychologists. It seems obvious to Pagans, and to most people who spend any time in the natural world.The article presents a related issue, “a fundamental problem of ecopsychology: even if we can establish that as we move further into an urban … [Read more...]

Anecdotal Evidence for Reincarnation

I was at Avebury in 2007. But before I went, I had memories of being there in the 1930s.Via WitchVox, here’s an article from Psychology Today on reincarnation – in particular the work of Professor Ian Stevenson, who catalogued “over 2,500 cases, from cultures around the world, where small children would describe previous lives and deaths they had experienced that turned out to correspond in detail with those of real people whose stories the children could not have known.”The writer, Michael Kapla … [Read more...]

Super Bowl Voodoo???

Via the Wild Hunt, here’s an article on Lisa Johnson, a “for-hire expert in all your voodoo needs” – who’s also the sister of former NFL (and Southern Methodist University) running back Eric Dickerson. Johnson says the Saints won yesterday’s Super Bowl because every “root doctor, voodoo priest, and conjurer” was working magic for New Orleans.I’ve never had much use for athletes who thank God for helping them beat their opponents to a bloody pulp in some athletic contest. They usually sound like t … [Read more...]

New Atheist vs. UU Minister

Here’s an interesting exchange: New Atheist Christopher Hitchens interviewed by UU minister Marilyn Sewell. I found the article via Religion Dispatches, where it was summarized / reviewed by Eric Reitan of Oklahoma State University.As I think I’ve made clear, I find it frustrating when Hitchens et al claim that fundamentalism is the only “real” religion. Sewell describes herself as a liberal Christian, Hitchens responds “you’re really not in any meaningful sense a Christian.” I don’t know how Hit … [Read more...]

Not Knowing

In my look at the argument between theists and atheists, one of my key points is that “not knowing” is OK. The big questions of Life are beyond our ability to know with any real certainty. We don’t know what existed before the Big Bang, we don’t know what happens to our individual consciousness after death, and we don’t know The Meaning Of Life. We have hints and intimations, bits and pieces that are meaningful and helpful to some of us though not to all of us, but ultimately, we don’t know.And t … [Read more...]

Ghost Story

I had a phone call from David in Tennessee tonight. David and I became good friends in 11th grade and have remained close ever since. What you need to know about David for this story is that while he's nominally a Methodist, he's more "spiritual but not religious"... except he's not very spiritual. But for someone who isn't spiritual, he seems to attract a lot of spirits. One of his encounters became a turning point for me, in 2001 when I finally decided to get serious about my own … [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X