A funny thing happened while recently flipping channels and tuning in to the middle of Stephen Colbert's Late Show interview with guest Bill Maher. ...
"Crisis-talk," including talk about religious crises, dominates media and discourse currently. Terrorism. Migration. Economies. Morality. These and others are big-screen topics, but they reflect the small accumulating evidences.
he way I see it, human beings are fleeing oppression and we have a secular moral obligation to help. America is a nation of immigrants -- many of which came here fleeing oppression. We should be able to empathize with these Syrian refugees.
To be sure, there are deep divisions related to some moral and political issues in our time, but if we think of ourselves as allies of the Good, rather than enemies of one another, perhaps we can then carve out enough common ground to work together for the common good.
If we really want to help people, there are tangible things we can do. Does your friend have cancer? Offer to hire a cleaning service for her, or take her a meal. Buy her some warm pajamas. Do something real to help.
Indiscriminate evil ought to shut down theology, but instead it drives many us real-world Leftovers into more serious religious belief.
We must remember that religion is not merely about making my life better. Religion at its best is about making me better, and a better contributor to the common good.
I believe its because being openly spiritual is The Last Great Social Taboo, judged as shameful, embarrassing or stupid in our technocratic, über-rationalist culture. Why do we continue to allow our friends, communities, workplaces and ecological systems to suffer when self-love, brother-love and planet-love can transform all suffering in its path?
Several years ago I met up with fellow writer, Ramachandra Guha. When I told him I was going to write a book about climbing a mountain, he insisted that it would be a much better story if I didn't make it to the top.
The election loss in the heartland state came after a period of intense debate over tolerance and India's national identity. Attacks on minorities and rationalists, combined with communalist rhetoric and religion-based policies aggravated India's long simmering 'culture-wars.'
Bias means limitation. It means finitude. It means non-omnipresence: that this is only happening here, not anywhere else; only going in this direction, not any other direction; only serving this use, not any other use.
Nanda Devi is known as the "bliss-giving goddess," though the Sanskrit word "ananda," at the root of her name, is better understood as "contentment." Being an atheist, I seek the mountain more than the goddess, though the two are inseparable. Despite my disbelief, I have always appreciated the spiritual resonance of the Himalayas.
At first glance, the idea of having an interreligious prayer might seem disingenuous and perhaps even insulting; one might ask whether or not the prayer is truly "meaningful": does the language used reflect how one understands their idea and conceptualization of the divine?
If only the religious right's influence were limited to "Pastors of LA." Unfortunately, religion still causes harm in real life. And that is what has always given atheists their sharp edge.
Why am I doing this? What purpose does it serve? Where on earth am I going? These are questions I ask myself more than once in the course of my journeys to Bandarpunch, Nanda Devi and Kailash.
To say that religion is divisive is to attempt no analysis of the problems at hand. It is to stop at the surface making no effort to dig deeper for the underlying problems seething underneath.