Yoga- a beneficial practice or the work of the devil? The increasing popularity of yoga in the United States has sparked controversy among evangelical Christians and fundamentalist Hindus. In this article, Jain reports the view points of several Christian and Hindu figures, who criticize the practice of yoga in America, and provides counter arguments to the monolithic views on the ancient practice.
An Adventure Novel of the Spirit that Reveals the Lost Message of the Hidden Apostle. This is the story of one man’s search beyond religious fundamentalism to discover the real meaning of Christ’s message.read more
In this impassioned and eye-opening book, Gordon takes us through all the fundamental stories—the Prodigal Son, the Temptation in the Desert, the parable of Lazarus, the Agony in the Garden—pondering the intense strangeness of a deity in human form, the unresolved more ambiguities, the problem posed to her as an enlightened reader by the miracle of the Resurrection. What she rediscovers—and reinterprets with her signature candor, intelligence, and straightforwardness—is a rich store of overlapping, sometimes conflicting teachings that feel both familiar and tantalizingly elusive. It is this unsolvable conundrum that rests at the heart of Reading Jesus and with which Gordon keeps us in thrall on every page.read more
Is it ever too late to say thank you? Yes, and no. Here’s an idea for observing the Thanksgiving holiday in a less traditional way this year.read more
1. Eternal Love, your grace we praise Which shapes and comforts all our days, Evolves the world we know. Let worship, symbols come of age To help us read beneath the page And test the status quo! …read more
Americans United for Separation of Church and State have together drafted a point-by-point rebuttal to The Manhattan Declaration, a right-wing Christian manifesto published (with 200+ prominent signatories) last November. Our MANHATTAN COUNTER-DECLARATION aims at providing clarity on the issues they address, and defending the values they profess to (but fail) protect by means of their document. We want to launch our Counter-Declaration so that the religious right can get busy responding to good arguments for a change, instead of spending all of their time composing bad ones of their own. Progressives, moderate Christians, humanists, atheists, and other religious leaders are tired of being on the defensive and are putting forward our own agenda for the future.read more
Frequently, after a lecture or seminar, someone will ask me: “Why do you have to call it Progressive Christianity? Aren’t we all Christians?” These were usually people who seemed to be a little on edge, and sometimes even angry, but their questions were sincere and frankly, they are good ones.read more
From the Introduction to A Master Level Thesis: For the impatient, the world is a frustrating place. We see, with the clarity of youth, what is needed in a given situation and we express this need many …read more
A poem written by Luis G. Collazo, From Puerto Rico.
A critical presentation on American way of life
from a theological -ethical perspective
What should thoughtful Christians do with texts that propose God is pleased by human sacrifice or that God commanded Israel to commit acts of genocide? What about texts that contain historical errors or predictions that have gone unfulfilled long beyond their expiration dates? In The Human Faces of God Thom Stark moves beyond notions of inerrancy in order to confront such problematic texts and open up a conversation about new ways they can be used in service of the church and its moral witness today. Readers looking for an academically informed yet accessible discussion of the Bible’s thorniest texts wil find it a thought-provoking and indispensable resource.read more
Tune: In Dulci Jubilo
1. Our world cries out to be reborn:
a world of pain, all tossed and torn.
Babies born to mothers
scarce old enough to yet conceive,
like Jesus born to Mary,
so young, so fearful, so naive;
he was there before us,
Jesus born that way.
2. Our world cries out to be reborn:
where power abused is now the norm.
Leaders lead with violence
where life and innocence are slain,
as Herod murdered children
through fear of challenge in his reign;
Christ was there before us,
Jesus lived that day.
3. Our world of greed must free itself
from worship of material wealth.
Kings brought gifts to Jesus
and laid their treasure at his feet;
but he grew rich in spirit,
in poverty he was complete.
He was there before us,
there to show the Way.
4. Our world saw light on Christmas Day
when love drew breath amid the hay.
In the Bible pages
full of long-remembered tales,
through metaphor and story
the truth of Christmas still prevails:
Jesus is before us,
here to show the Way.
Jesus is before us,
he is here to stay!
Chris Avis Nov 2010
Notes and suggestions
The tempo should be a little slower than for ‘Good Christian men rejoice’, to suit the reflective nature of the words.
In some verses, lines 4 and/or 5 have an extra syllable compared to the usual length, requiring the original first note of affected lines to be sung as two crotchets instead of a single minim. This is a simple modification musically and should pose no problem.
The extra two lines at the end of verse 4 repeat the tune of the previous two lines, perhaps with a suitable rallentando.
If this is sung by a choir, the following suggestions might be useful, though probably inadvisable for congregational singing!
1. It could be effective to sing verse 2 a semitone lower, returning to ‘normal’ for verse 3.
2. Similarly, the more upbeat feel of the last verse might be enhanced by singing it in a higher key.
Is “progressive” the new liberal? The word progressive is frequently used these days referring to “non-fundamentalist” churches. I used it as a theme for our Lenten sermon series: Progressive Christianity takes a fresh look at traditions and rituals. You may see the word used in newspaper and magazine articles. What does it mean? Is progressive simply the “new liberal”? My perspective is yes and no. “Progressive Christianity” does not lend itself easily to definition. It is more of a movement; a path; an approach than a belief system. It is often more interested in spirituality than religion. Unlike the “liberal churches” of the 1960’s and later, it is not necessarily closely aligned with one political perspective. So how might we describe “progressive” Christianity?read more
This month I write with a sad and heavy heart. Five young men have died due to suicide. The common thread between them is that they were young, Gay and experiencing harsh harassment and devastating discrimination from their peers. Current statistics inform us that 9 out of 10 Gay/Lesbian/Bi-Sexual and Transgendered Young People experience such dehumanizing and demoralizing treatment every day. We are informed, also, that they are 30% more likely to commit suicide than their peers.read more
This coming weekend will be marked by a 25th anniversary gathering and celebration for the important scholarly enterprise known as the Jesus Seminar. A good time to ask what difference it makes when the Jesus of history turns out to be considerably more interesting than the myth-encrusted Christ created by the church over the centuries. Or does it make any difference at all?read more
A debate has raged over the last 18 months as to whether the tea party movement is racist…I propose to put this debate to rest. The tea party is racist. Its followers have deployed a brilliant strategy to deflect charges of racism by using a form of the legislative provision known as…read more
There’s no shortage of political blather in this year’s mid-term election campaigns, but most of us yearn for substantive discussion of the serious problems we face. What should the politicians be discussing? The University of Texas at Austin asked faculty members who teach about politics “to analyze, examine and provide their perspectives” on key political issues for the university’s web site, with new essays posted each weekday throughout the campaign season.read more