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Religion in America

'Distilled Spirits' Traces Birth Of New Age Spirituality

Religion News Service | Kimberly Winston | Posted 10.21.2012 | Religion

BERKELEY, Calif. (RNS) Gerald Heard is the most influential religious thinker you've never heard of. Without Heard, some of the major spiritual dev...

Reflection On The Rise Of The 'Nones' From Someone Who Should Probably Be One

Cameron Nations | Posted 12.18.2012 | Religion
Cameron Nations

I'm 23, recite the Creed without crossing my fingers, and think seriously and critically about my faith. Furthermore, not only am I in seminary to be an ordained minister, but -- GASP! -- I'm also doing so in a mainline denomination. How can this be? It defies all logic!

The Shoot-Out Election: How To Vote?

Alan Jones | Posted 12.18.2012 | Religion
Alan Jones

Given the extremes of our political discourse, where does a "progressive traditionalist" like me find solace and encouragement?

Dressing Up For Prayer And For God

Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie | Posted 12.18.2012 | Religion
Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie

There are times and places when our worship requires a sense of awe and dignity. There are times when we need less "here and now" and more transcendence and beauty. There are times when our prayer must be marked by reverence and earnestness.

Judge Rules Couple Cannot Change Their Last Name To 'ChristIsKing'

Associated Press | Posted 10.17.2012 | Religion

NEW YORK (AP) – A judge has told a Staten Island pastor and his wife that they cannot take the Lord's name in vain. Civil Court Judge Philip Stra...

Facts, Fear And Fundamentalism

Michael D'Antonio | Posted 12.13.2012 | Religion
Michael D'Antonio

In his new book, "500 Days: Secrets and Lies in the Terror Wars," Kurt Eichenwald revives the story of George W. Bush, Bible prophecy and the Iraq war. He also gives us the opportunity to reflect on the dangers of fundamentalism.

Don't Vote For The 'Better Catholic'

Rev. James Martin, S.J. | Posted 12.12.2012 | Religion
Rev. James Martin, S.J.

When a Catholic candidate speaks about his or her faith, it's more important for voters to concentrate on their policies, rather than trying to worm their way into the person's soul.

The Bible And Congressman Broun

Adam Hamilton | Posted 12.11.2012 | Religion
Adam Hamilton

I love the Bible. I read it every day. It has affected my life in profound ways. I am a pastor and I teach and preach the Bible to my congregation every week. But the Bible is not a manufacturer's handbook, a science textbook or a guidebook for public policy.

What Faith Communities Can Offer The 'Nones'

Phil Haslanger | Posted 12.10.2012 | Religion
Phil Haslanger

OK, church folks. Fasten your seatbelts. But don't hunker down. There's a new study out that shows that one in five Americans has no religious affiliation. Not Baptist, not Catholic, not Lutheran, not Jewish, not Muslim.

Why Christianity Is Dying While Spirituality Is Thriving

Steve McSwain | Posted 12.10.2012 | Religion
Steve McSwain

There is within this new emergence an affinity for those matters of social and personal justice, compassion, spiritual wholeness and unity within and among all people and faiths. These were the obsessions of Jesus while here on earth.

America's Perception Of Muslims Needs To Change

Dr. Zahid Bukhari | Posted 12.10.2012 | Religion
Dr. Zahid Bukhari

As violence proliferates abroad we must ask ourselves a question: How is this affecting the image of millions of Muslim Americans who live here in the U.S.?

It's Time To Get To Know The 'Nones'

Chris Stedman | Posted 12.10.2012 | Religion
Chris Stedman

In a time when debates about same-sex marriage, reproductive rights, capital punishment, epidemic hunger and even Big Bird dominate American discourse, it is of paramount importance that we understand the values held by the religiously unaffiliated.

Meet John Q. Nones: A Profile Of The Fast-Growing Religiously Unaffiliated

Religion News Service | Lauren Markoe | Posted 10.10.2012 | Religion

(RNS) Meet John Q. Nones, a young, white male who is making a big impression on the American religious landscape for something he doesn't do: align wi...

Let's Stop Our Unchristian Politics

Greg Garrett | Posted 12.08.2012 | Religion
Greg Garrett

Our process of making decisions that involve our faith and our civic life is flawed almost beyond repair, and our focus on what we consider Christian issues instead of on doing politics in a Christian fashion has brought us to this point of division.

Sexual Misconduct And The American Prosperity Gospel

Kate Bowler | Posted 12.08.2012 | Religion
Kate Bowler

Every Sunday, millions of American Christians attend a megachurch that preaches a "prosperity gospel" of health, wealth and happiness. But in this era of supersized banks and corporations, prosperity megachurches have become just another organization that assumes it is too big to fail.

Open Mosque Day 2012

Megan Sweas | Posted 12.08.2012 | Religion
Megan Sweas

Eleven years after 9/11, bigots continue to promote the idea that American Muslims plan to convert us all by sword and impose sharia, Islamic law, on America. But the Muslim American community has opened its doors. It's up to us to see where they may lead.

'One Film 9/11' Can Make A Difference

Craig Considine | Posted 12.08.2012 | Religion
Craig Considine

We learned through "Innocence of Muslims" that one film can make a difference in the way Americans and Muslims perceive each other. Now is the time for another film to make a difference -- for the better.

Hundreds Of U.S. Pastors Back Political Candidates, Defy Tax Rules

Reuters | Nanette Byrnes | Posted 12.08.2012 | Religion

CHARLOTTE, N.C. Oct 7 (Reuters) - Baptist Pastor Mark Harris stood before his flock in North Carolina on Sunday and joined hundreds of other U.S. re...

Fighting False Balance In The Media

Sister Mary Ann Walsh | Posted 12.05.2012 | Religion
Sister Mary Ann Walsh

Reports on Catholicism are especially vulnerable to false balance, and often it is achieved through manipulation of the name "Catholic" and religious symbols such as veils and Roman collars.

Attack Of The Spiritual But Not Religious

Kate Blanchard | Posted 12.05.2012 | Religion
Kate Blanchard

Alan Miller hopes for a humanist culture full of "inspiring alternatives" that "inspire and engage," and in which people's ethics and behaviors are built on, as he puts it, "something beyond themselves." It seems to me that this will require making room for SBNRs.

What Are The Religious Issues To Watch For In The Debates?

Lee Jefferson | Posted 12.02.2012 | Religion
Lee Jefferson

The two candidates, Obama and Romney, both claim to be committed Christians. With Romney's Mormonism, observers of the election are wondering, "When will the Mormon card be played, or will it be played before November?"

BibliFact Roundup: Conventional Snippets Of Uplift And Hope

Timothy Beal | Posted 12.02.2012 | Religion
Timothy Beal

The Bible possesses a kind of iconic power in American culture that has little to do with its contents. Indeed, sometimes its contents and its iconicity clash.

Spiritual But Not Religious: The Worst of All Worlds

Alan Miller | Posted 12.02.2012 | Religion
Alan Miller

Selecting a superficial mixture of "nice-feeling" items from Yoga to a slice of Zen and a moment of Tao is hardly progressive as far as options for humanity is concerned. They have jettisoned the hard work, diligence and observation of organized religion for a me-me-me what-ever kind of lifestyle

Most Americans Doubt Scientology Is A 'Real' Religion

Reuters | Chris Michaud | Posted 10.03.2012 | Religion

(Reuters) - Most Americans do not think Scientology is a true religion, more people would prefer to win an Olympic gold medal than a Pulitzer prize an...

Wisconsin Killings: Threatening Clouds, Silver Linings

I.J. Singh | Posted 11.28.2012 | Religion
I.J. Singh

I look at the Wisconsin killings and their price and value to Sikhs. At a personal human level the price of each life is awesome; it can never be met. But the greater national sensitivity and awareness that has resulted is of inestimable value