As we celebrate the independence of our nation this week, I am comforted to believe, to hope and to pray that, in time, we might reflect on this heartbreaking event as a harbinger not of hate and division, but of a new era of unity and peace in our nation for all its people.
I knew, even as a small child, how meaningful it was that my mother insisted on a life of truth, beauty, love and justice. Her courageous choices were about her, and they were also very much about us, her kids. She knew she had to live a life that would show her children how to fully live.
In the last week, after Pope Francis's recent encyclical on the environment Laudato Si', the media reacted as if Christians had never seen environmental problems...
Due to Pope Francis' encyclical, what had been a fringe and at times a lonely voice, has suddenly become mainstream. It is our sense of being separate from the Earth that has allowed us to abuse it. If we held the Earth as sacred, as part of the living oneness to which we belong, could we treat it in this way -- would we pollute its rivers, kill off its species?
When the chips are down and the going gets rough, and people are claiming that we need to protect ourselves from a dangerous wave of tolerance, and openness, and acceptance, I think I'm going with Jesus.
Dr. Tahir-ul-Qadri, Pakistan's renowned Islamic scholar and author of the 600-page Fatwa on Terrorism and Suicide Bombings, launched a comprehensive 12-volume counter-terrorism curriculum in Britain recently. Sudheendra Kulkarni spoke to him, ahead of the curriculum's upcoming launch in Pakistan and India.
Gandharva vivah is a form of marriage that was practiced by third-gender or queer individuals in antiquity. It is especially beautiful because of the prayers that transcend the patriarchal structures of traditional marriage. Love is the giver, love is the receiver.
Many of us have accepted such patriarchal theology because it feels familiar. But that doesn't make it right.
When I first heard they forgave him, I flinched. Why should they have to do that? So quickly? My visceral response gave way to self-examination. Maybe the family members of those who died at Mother Emanuel are better Christians than I am, with a deeper faith.
Why is this important to emphasize? Simply put, many Hindus -- regardless of their background -- are put in positions of trying to explain India, even if they have minimal connection to or interest in the country. They are also wrongly assumed to be the spokespeople for India, particularly its social and economic issues.
I believe that hope isn't a feeling, a mood or a personality type. Rather, hope is a decision, a choice we make because of this thing we call faith.
The personality of Bilal captures the American black experience, as I understand it, in a nutshell. His story is a narrative from slavery to freedom, from darkness to faith, from obscurity to historic centrality.
Is it too much to expect Republican presidential candidates to speak about their faith in the same optimistic way -- or at least temper their scare claims with some sense of proportion? No, it's not. After all, they tell us over and over how seriously they take their Christianity.
Struggling with my own limited capacity of faith, I nonetheless cling to the hope that Christ understands all pain, even this one. He was not a woman, but in the Garden of Gethsemane, part of the Atonement was his experiencing every kind of human suffering.
Food makes me smile. Whether it be a toasty chocolate croissant, a steaming cup of coffee or a bowl of fruit salad, I almost never turn down an opportunity to excite my taste buds.
We are not flawless and the Hindu past is not unblemished. The future of our tradition, however, is not contingent on a perfect past or on immunity to criticism in the present. It depends on its ability to address human problems and to promote the flourishing of all human beings.
Empathetic listening pushed me into a gay affirming stance. But coming to that conclusion hasn't stopped me from continuing to listen.
1400 years ago, the Prophet Muhammad prophesized that a time would come when nothing would remain of Islam but its name, nothing of the Quran but its word, and that many "Mosques would be splendidly furnished but destitute of guidance" (Mishkatul Masabih).
As I argued recently, Pope Francis' climate encyclical, Laudato Si, shows powerful resources in Catholic and other faith traditions for addressing the challenge of climate change. But in immediate terms, it does little to affect the pessimistic public mood.