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Josh Schrei

Entries by Josh Schrei

The Crucible Gone Cold: Modern Yoga, Christianity, and the Practice of Individual Transformation

(29) Comments | Posted October 28, 2010 | 8:40 PM

Christianity lost much of its alchemical fire centuries and centuries ago. Modern yoga teeters on the brink of suffering a similar fate for very different reasons.

Much ado has recently been made in religious circles of the potential spiritual hazards of the practice of yoga. Pat Robertson...

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The Ladakh Cloudburst: An Eyewitness Account

(7) Comments | Posted August 16, 2010 | 11:08 AM

I'm writing this from Leh, where a single night of mudslides and floods has caused untold devastation all across the land of Ladakh. While the media have reported fairly extensively on the situation, it is impossible to grasp the scale of the destruction, for this is a vast land, and...

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Buddhist Ethics for a Harm-Free Livelihood: An Open Letter to the CEO of BP

(203) Comments | Posted May 27, 2010 | 8:51 AM

"The way you support yourself can be an expression of your deepest self, or it can be a source of suffering for you and others. ... Our vocation can nourish our understanding and compassion, or erode them. We should be awake to the consequences, far and near, of the way...

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Upon Losing That Heavenly Glory: An Ode (and a Requiem) to Lost

(47) Comments | Posted May 23, 2010 | 4:03 PM

Part I : The Ode (posted 5 hours before the final episode)

Six years ago, a single frightened eye opened upon a world that grew wider and wider in progressive concentric circles until it blossomed from a small bamboo patch a few yards away from a white sandy beach to...

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To Die With Dignity in Your Own Land: Tibet, China, and the Politics of Disaster

(37) Comments | Posted April 15, 2010 | 11:08 AM

The Tibetans that died in Jyekundo had the right to die as Tibetans, not as Chinese.

The tragic 6.9 magnitude earthquake that struck Jyekundo yesterday has been consistently labeled the "China Quake" by the mainstream media. It is worth noting, for many reasons, that Jyekundo is...

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The Value Of Freedom, The Ugliness of Censorship: Google, the UFC, and China

(4) Comments | Posted March 26, 2010 | 4:06 PM

UFC President Dana White isn't exactly going to win any PC awards anytime soon. The notorious spokesman for the rapidly-growing full contact martial arts empire is known for his tendency to speak first and think later. In one famously public tirade, White went ballistic on journalist...

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The Burden of Proof: How Atheism Has Adopted a Worldview That Science Never Intended

(1497) Comments | Posted March 18, 2010 | 3:29 PM

"The human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe. We are like a little child entering a huge library. The walls are covered to the ceilings with books in many different tongues. The child knows that someone must have written these books. It does not know who or how....
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A Little Matter of Science, Superiority, and Racism: New Atheism's Dangerous Waters

(234) Comments | Posted March 5, 2010 | 10:14 AM

In a widely viewed article on CNN last week, Professor Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics announced the results of a study which he claims proves that atheists are smarter than believers.

Despite the obvious flaws of the study -- that the...

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The God Project: Hinduism as Open-Source Faith

(46) Comments | Posted March 4, 2010 | 1:59 PM

Trying to explain the core beliefs of "Hinduism" to an interested observer can be challenging to say the least. Its often stated that the word "Hinduism" itself is a total misnomer, as it basically refers to the sum total of spiritual and religious thought and practice that has taken place...

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Newsflash: Educated Liberals, Atheists More likely to Label Themselves Smart

(70) Comments | Posted February 28, 2010 | 7:58 AM

In my long running dialogue with atheists on belief, science, organized religion, and the nature of the universe, one theme recurs quite frequently. Avowed atheists almost always seem to overtly or subtly think that their worldview is "smarter" than that of those people who believe in a higher...

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What Good It Does: A Response to A. Tom Grunfeld on the Obama - Dalai Lama Meeting

(24) Comments | Posted February 27, 2010 | 9:14 AM

Like an aging quasi-rock star who can't help repeatedly playing that one hit that made him famous all those years ago, A. Tom Grunfeld always manages to revert to his perceived trump card on the issue of Tibet -- the fact that he knows a deep dark secret about Tibetan...

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The Jewel of the Antilles: Rebuild Port-au-Prince into the Green City of the Future

(19) Comments | Posted January 16, 2010 | 4:03 PM

In the 1800s, Haiti, or Saint-Domingue as it was called, was known as the Jewel of the Antilles. One of the world's most prosperous colonies, its lush terrain provided 80% of the world's sugar, and an equally impressive portion of its coffee, rum, indigo, molasses, and timber. Built on the...

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The War Over Words: Why Google's New Approach to China Should Be the Only Approach

(2) Comments | Posted January 13, 2010 | 5:37 PM

Yesterday, Google announced formally what many of us in the human rights world told them four years ago would happen if they stepped into the ring with the Chinese government.

It appears that our friends in Beijing, since striking a deal with the ubiquitous search engine in 2006...

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Avatar and the Vocabulary of Evildoers -- Or, Why James Cameron's Script Isn't as Bad as You Think

(20) Comments | Posted January 6, 2010 | 4:29 PM

While critics have unanimously agreed that the visual spectacle that is James Cameron's Avatar is beyond compare, there has been less enthusiasm for the plot line, which has been called out as flat and unoriginal.

It's quite true that the movie's script -- which centers on a tribe of indigenous...

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Waffle Wildly, and Carry A Big Speech: Obama's Meandering Nobel Road Trip

(2) Comments | Posted December 11, 2009 | 8:03 AM

Theodore Roosevelt, a magnanimous, larger-than-life President who won a Nobel Peace Prize during wartime and spoke eloquently -- though not necessarily cohesively -- on the relationship between peace and the use of force, coined the term: "Speak softly and carry a big stick."

Our current President's rudderless foreign policy, as...

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The Relative Importance of Being Able to Hit a Ball into a Hole

(40) Comments | Posted December 8, 2009 | 6:03 PM

Back before he was hit with a media muzzle, Tiger Woods' late father Earl used to make some pretty outlandish claims about the potential future accomplishments of his golf-prodigy son.

In one memorable interview in 1996, Earl indicated that -- in his humble opinion -- he had sired the messiah.

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Know When to Fold 'Em: How Obama's Move in Afghanistan is a Strategic Blunder that Plays Right into the Hands of China

(13) Comments | Posted December 4, 2009 | 3:09 PM

"You got to know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away, know when to run..."
-Kenny Rogers, The Gambler

When I voted for Barack Obama, I was fully aware of his intention to focus America's military efforts on Afghanistan rather than Iraq....

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