Posts Tagged ‘Death’

Dark_and_dismal_valley

The Valley of the Shadow of Death – Seeking a Jewish Afterlife

A month ago, my mother-in-law’s brother passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. Tom (may his memory be for a blessing), was far too young, too healthy, and too committed to his family for anyone to accept his sudden death as anything but a shock. When leaving the funeral, my mother-in-law, Linda — who is a catholic […]

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Taken by Jenn Lindsay in Rome on July 17, 2014.

The Roman Jewish Vigil for Israel

In the Piazza della Rotunda of the Pantheon, at the heart of Rome, there was a rally in support of Israel held by the historic Roman Jewish community. Traces of trauma from World War II are here, scattered throughout the cobblestone streets in gold plaques marking former homes of Jews murdered over the tortuous last years […]

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Death and Rebirth

The following story, regardless of how bizarre and strange it may sound, is entirely true. No part of it is made up. Once upon a time, I lived in a castle. The castle was made of pride, arrogance, and disbelief. The castle had high walls not allowing anyone else entrance into it unless they first […]

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What is darkness? What is light?

Last Sunday, March 30, Dean of Duke Chapel Luke Powery preached a sermon titled “Seeing in the Dark.” In it he described the way Christian scriptures tend to associate darkness with struggle, blindness, and unbelief, while they associate light with beauty, vision, and righteousness. Readers can walk away with the simple idea that light is […]

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Fred_Phelps_on_his_pulpit

How do you solve a problem like Fred?

Reportedly, the Rev. Fred Phelps, the longtime head of the Topeka, Kan.-based hate group the Westboro Baptist Church, is in hospice care [Phelps passed away on Mar. 19th ed.]. His son Nathan Phelps, one of several Phelps children and grandchildren to escape the controversial group best known for its offensively named website and its picketing […]

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Flossenbürg by A. Kryszczak - Przed blokiem XXIII (crop).jpg. "In front of block 23" Drawing by Stefan Kryszczak survivor of Flossenbürg concentration camp. Drawing done in ink on tracing paper. The heirs of this work's copyright holder (usually the creator) have released it into the public domain. This applies worldwide.

Unrateable Terrors

I help teach a university course on The Holocaust in Historical Context. It is, it should be, impossible to remain unaffected by immersive study of Western Antisemitism and how religious, economic, political, racial, nationalistic, and cultural trends intersected to culminate in the ghastly monstrosity of the Third Reich and its horrorhouse of moral inversions. The […]

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A good death

It was like one of those political rallies. You know, when one person yells “What do we want?” followed by an uncoordinated chant that should probably be narrowed down to one key idea. What works is when the crowd responds with something like “Peace!” When it really breaks down is when that key idea is […]

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Jesus Scrovegni Chapel

Jesus and the Moneychangers in the Scrovegni Chapel

In the summertime I visited Padua and went to the Scrovegni Chapel, dated 1305. In the past 40 years the frescos have begun to crumble, and curators have researched atmospheric problems in order to counteract the decay. Long story short: this chapel is OLD. The air on the globe has totally changed since 1305 and […]

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Non-violence sculpture by Carl Fredrik Reuters

Loving Courage to Worship the Gungod No More

I am calling for us to end our perverse worship of the Gungod. I am calling for us to end the daily slaughter which is the perverse liturgy that drenches our communities with the gore of human blood sacrifice; a sacrifice that is somehow never sufficient to appease the idol, the Gungod.

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Jon Kabat-Zinn and Kierkegaard walk into an ICU

Jon: Let’s breath in, acknowledge our emotions, and observe. Soren: Yes, let’s do that. But what is the question you are willing to live for? I am a medical resident working in an ICU in Boston. Most of the day, I try to embody the principles of mindfulness. I breathe deeply to myself, try to […]

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