You do not love your neighbors as yourself when you deny them equal dignity, equal access or equal protection. And you do not love your neighbors as yourself when you use language, take actions or support policies that offend or disadvantage them.
Does Islam sanction slavery? Until recently, this question would have been seen as somewhat outlandish or else academic. Aside from the odd right-wing talk show host in the US, the latter question does not generally arise these days except in academic and theological discussions.
Besides food and family gatherings, Jewish festivals have profound meanings. Rosh Hashanah is not just the beginning of the Hebrew calendar, but is a symbol of renewal. It is when we begin to scrutinize ourselves and determine how we want to improve ourselves.
All it takes is to accept the life you're living. To receive, with the same spirit, both pleasure and displeasure. To be with, rather than against. And to realize with time that, in the coinciding of things, the stream and the leaf are completely emancipated and free!
Here, little kids are taught to hold incense and kneel and bow at ancestor tablets and a variety of gods. Do you know how cute it is to see a little kid praying with pure devotion to a Buddhist god? It is JUST AS CUTE as the blonde headed little girl singing "Jesus Loves Me."
In response to this unfolding scandal, I submit to you that joining the shame parade is an unhelpful response that misses an important opportunity. The opportunity for the church, for followers of Jesus, for all of us, is to divorce this Monster God once and for all.
The real war on religion is being waged by those on the Right who read the Bible not as the story of God's saving interaction with the world through the unfolding of God's reign, but either as foundational for a conservative politics of self-interest or as a blueprint for a post-Enlightenment cult of individual piety.
Since the Third Century, Christians have primarily buried their dead in churchyards and cemeteries owned by the parish or church that they attended. The Roman Catholic Church has therefore been in the "cemetery business" for over 1,700 years. I
Surveys reveal a disturbingly large number of American Jews who feel disconnected from their Jewish identity. How painfully sad! In response, and with the High Holy Days just around the corner, let me share what being Jewish means to me.
Selfish and harmful acts result in feelings of lack of trust and connectedness with others, which is truly a dire state to find oneself in. I don't know how much misery Dick Chaney or Henry Kissinger experience, but I'm sure their internal realms would feel like hell to me.
The one finding I would most like to share after more than a quarter-century of traveling throughout this country reporting on issues of faith is how similar people are in their basic desires and ambitions.
As Jimmy Carter faces cancer, many of the people who were influenced by this gracious, thoughtful man are brought to sadness. I am one of them. President Carter told me what I needed to hear -- that I was not doing enough in service to the world.
This #blacklivesmatter movement may not be our parent's or grandparent's political modus operandi. It is not far from it. It has benefited from it. No, the #blacklivesmatter movement may not be our momma's or daddy's movement, but it is on the same civil rights movement continuum.
It's dispiriting to note how few of childhoods' freewheeling exercises--the entertainments that were once synonymous with youthful delight--survive the journey with us into adult life.
Disunity has infected every corner of the Jewish world, and is the venom that lurks behind every slanted look we give one another, behind every bad word we say about each other (and there are plenty), and behind our indecision as to how we should respond to social and political events.
I wonder about your response because I know myself. I know by experience how close I can walk myself to disaster while whispering the word "harmless" under my breath. How many of us live this way?
Archbishop Desmond Tutu called the HIV/AIDS pandemic a "new apartheid" on a global scale. The virus works in a close alliance with poverty, ignorance, complacency, discrimination, and inequity. Its devastating impact is felt in every country--but especially in areas where inequality rules.
I find there is a Jesus who everybody loves, the Jesus who modeled what it means to show compassion to the stranger, care for the widow, bind up the wounds of the hurting, and heal the sick. This Jesus continues to attract admirers and followers.
The world's 1.7 billion Muslims do not recognize a unifying religious authority like the Pope. Nevertheless, three Grand Muftis, clerics from Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, and Indonesia endorsed the Islamic Declaration on Climate Change and spoke at the Symposium.