Party Faithful. Can the Democrats get a foothold on the religious vote?
Shari'a law vs. the US Constitution. In the matter of the establishing in the US Muslim enclaves practicing, imposing, and enforcing Islamic law, Shari'a.
In the meantime back at the ranch. Afghan man faces death for abandoning Islam for Christianity.
Newsfilter: Indian temple city hit by blasts.
THE SAINTLY SINNER. “Maudlin,” a derivative of Magdalene, in the English language, with the meaning of “mawkishly lachrymose.”
Newsfilter: PBS Station Nixes Show On Terrorism. Following last-minute cries of protest from Muslim leaders last week, a Public Broadcasting Service affiliate in Dallas canceled the premiere of a documentary on the roots of Islamic terrorism.
The Vatican's university in Rome is starting a seminar on satanism and exorcism. "The seminar will conclude with the testimony of two exorcists who will explain how to distinguish between someone who is ill and requiring medical care, and one is 'possessed by demons.'"
Redemption and the Power of Man. In Christianity, redemption is essentially an act of divine grace, the salvation of a sinful humanity that is incapable of saving itself. In Judaism redemption depends entirely on man, who is responsible for his own fate. To what extent did Judaism influence the development of progressive, pluralistic democracy?
Alternative Considerations of Jonestown & Peoples Temple. Was it a religion, a revolutionary social movement, a cult, or a combination of them all?
If you missed the very powerful Frontline "Faith and Doubt" on the spiritual implications of 9/11, check out the PBS site with the full script and interviews with priests, rabbis, an Islamic scholar, a professor of Middle East studies, an English professor, a British novelist, a psychoanalyst, and the photographer who documented Ground Zero for the City of New York..
"Nothing so sharply distinguishes philosophers and Kabbalists as their attitude toward the problem of evil and the demonic."
"Nothing so sharply distinguishes philosophers and Kabbalists as their attitude toward the problem of evil and the demonic." A widely informative study of the historical background and on the mythic passions of the great Kabbalah scholar Gershom Scholen by a writer I much enjoy, Cynthia Ozick. (zip up Miguel, my uncle Zen sent this as a contribution to your Sacks)
The good news is that there is no religious war, the bad news is that a time bomb blast killed 7 in a Russian market; 14 Christians were killed in Indonesia; a 5 year old killed and three other under 15 injured in Israel. All in one day.
An Algerian defendant tells a court of his transformation from an irreligious drug dealer on the streets of Germany to an Afghanistan-trained militant, and the psychic journey of some young Muslim slackers in England to become fighters for Al-Qaeda (NYT).
A family of six was found dead in a case of murder-suicide, authorities in Oregon said Friday. Bryant, the father, became estranged from several branches of his family, including his parents, three brothers and a sister. The other family members were Jehovah's Witnesses and the split appeared to involve differences over religious beliefs. In other news, An angry, mysterious preacher told Andrea Yates that she was evil, that her children were damned, and that only death could save her. Mr. Yates testified that the preacher had taught him and his wife that children are lost forever to God, and therefore damned to eternal hellfire, if they are not "saved" by the time they are 13 or 14. Are we regressing to the religions produced nightmares of the Middle Ages?
"He considers religion as the scourge of humanity, which dampens down our fantasies and our lust to think and experiment.'' Academy board member Per Wastberg, about Nobel Prize winner for Literature V. S. Naipul (NYT-register, etc.)
"We wish to dissent against the using of the Capitol rotunda and other governmental buildings for prayer meetings that focus on Christian or monotheistic ceremonies." Comments?