Here I Stand!

I think most of us start out in our interfaith work with the expectation that our work will proceed smoothly and that we will find tolerance and acceptance in our relations with those of other faiths.  And for the most part that is probably the case.  At least those with whom we work are willing to respect those of other faiths than their own, and even offer their cooperation and support in projects that are aimed at improving their communities. But sometimes our best intentions go awry and we f … [Read more...]

The Hobby Lobby Chills

a male sillouhette with a flag standing in front of the words "Religious Freedom, Hobby Lobby."

It's been a little over a week since the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) made its decision in the so-called Hobby Lobby case which determined that closely-held corporations shall be afforded similar accommodations as religious non-profits with respect to the contraceptive mandate in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare).  It should be stated that I disagree fully with this ruling but I sympathize with the basis of the argument,  that the Green family, the o … [Read more...]

What About the Children?

Patheos issued a great writing prompt last year; how do we pass on our faith to our children? As half of an interfaith marriage, both members of minority religious communities, let me take this opportunity to express how insanely LOADED this question usually is. I have heard this question a hundred times, each colored with its own preexisting assumptions. More often than not when somebody close to me asks this question, it's more important to address the question they're NOT asking.When my … [Read more...]

Distributed Ceremonies Successful Online

Shea Morgan sitting behind an altar.

It’s undeniable that the Internet has been instrumental in the growth of Paganism.  It provides the isolated access to the information they crave whether it be about Paganism or anything else.  Granted, it can be difficult to sift the good from the bad, but as time marches on, I think that we have found ways to share information about our traditions and practices that has had, for the most part, a positive influence on our community.  Similarly, we have had great success with podcasts and audio r … [Read more...]

Greece v. Galloway: An Interfaith Opportunity

SCOTUS-Seal

In the town of Greece, NY, sectarian prayer has been opening monthly municipal meetings since 1999.  Members of that town sued it because those prayers were overwhelmingly Christian.  On May 5th, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decided that case determining that sectarian prayer held prior to such meetings was not prohibited by the Constitution of the United States.Before I continue, let me be clear:  I am not a lawyer, constitutional or otherwise.  But I do like lemonade, and … [Read more...]

Three Things I Think

A surprised baby with mouth open

With a tip of the hat to John Beckett over at Under the Ancient Oaks here on the Pagan channel, I thought I'd share three somewhat disconnected things that happened to me recently. You mean sex is okay? Recently, an influential teacher in my life retired.  Actually, he had retired last year, but he was the drama teach for my high school and he remained for one more musical production.  To honor him, a whole bunch of us who had been in shows he put together over the last few decades traveled b … [Read more...]

The Value of Sacred Language

codex regius

I've been married now for almost a year, and my wife and I have been together for nearly three. During that time I've gotten to know the local Jewish community fairly well, and (being the Rabbi's son-in-law) I've gotten a unique kind of “behind the scenes” look at how Synagogues and the general community function. One of the biggest internal cultural movements I've noticed in modern Judaism is this drive to reclaim Hebrew as a sacred language and encourage everyone in the community to learn it. T … [Read more...]

Speaking for Others: Part Two

Used via creative commons license.

In Part One of this series, I talked about the difficulties and dilemmas in being asked to talk about a tradition or faith that is not your own.  This week in Part Two, I'd like to offer some suggestions to those who find themselves in this situation.I must imagine that the monists or soft polytheists who attend interfaith events and work with those of other faiths want to accurately convey the great diversity within Paganism.  I don't believe that anyone is out there honestly trying to m … [Read more...]


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