Christian Scientists think of angels as bright ideas. Angels are moments of clarity and expanded consciousness, moments of fresh vision and creativity, broadened perspective, and infusions of loving inspiration. Christian Scientists, who think of God as pure Mind, a divine principle of loving consciousness, see the intellect as a portal of revelation. I come from [...]
(This is Part 3 of a 3-part series. See Part 1 and Part 2) OFFENSE Jesus was most recently portrayed in celluloid form by a Portuguese model with great hair. I’m talking about The Bible, a miniseries broadcast on The History Channel. In it we learn that Jesus was gentle and strong; that Jews really [...]
During Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur we cast our sins in to the desert, freeing ourselves from their oppressive burden, unshackling our hearts and minds so that we can begin the year anew. Six months later another new year arrives (Exodus 12:12). After a period of enslavement we find ourselves once again loosening our chains and opening our souls, ready to reencounter that which we cast away.
Humor; humor is difficult. Religion; religion is difficult. They can both be reassuring, and discomfiting. They can affix labels, or they can liberate. They can be subversive, or they can uplift the dominant paradigm. Both can be thrilling and boring. They can be unifying, or alienating. Religion and humor both aspire to help us live [...]
Wm. Curtis Holtzen and Roberto Sirvent have done a great service for those searching for a succinct compilation of theologian-philosopher Keith Ward’s voluminous work. In By Faith and Reason: The Essential Keith Ward, we now have a text which displays the depth and breadth of Ward’s momentous thinking. The compilation is appropriately arranged into five parts, each of which offer relevant [...]
After Auschwitz, no theology: From the chimneys of the Vatican, white smoke rises — a sign the cardinals have chosen themselves a Pope. From the crematoria of Auschwitz, black smoke rises — a sign the conclave of Gods hasn’t yet chosen the Chosen People.1 –Yehuda Amichai On Yom HaShoah, the Jewish day to mourn [...]
While the sums are larger and the stakes are higher in recent times, the fear that money corrupts those in power is an age-old issue. As far back as the Hebrew Bible those concerned with justice warned against the powerful and dangerous effects of money in politics.
I attended the 2009 Parliament of the World’s Religions in Melbourne, Australia. I was amazed by the preponderance of sacred fashion statements (the hats!), the number of New Age practitioners from the North American West Coast, and the ubiquity of the phrase “interfaith dialogue.” As former chair of the Union Theological Seminary Interfaith Caucus, a [...]
I recently received an email from the fine editorial staff at State of Formation informing me that I am officially a lapsed contributor and my posting account might be deleted. This is very true. I have lapsed in my public reflections about all things religious. When I ask myself why I lapsed, my answers are [...]
“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” – quote used by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. I don’t often write about classes I take at rabbinical school. But every so often I am touched enough by some experience to share it publicly. This fall I studied the work of [...]