401 posts tagged with christianity.
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The shining

The Polyamorous Christian Socialist Utopia That Made Silverware for Proper Americans
posted by Joe in Australia on Jun 22, 2016 - 26 comments

The country is never as bad as conservatives think it is

"You probably haven’t heard of the Constitution Party. They have no seats in the House or the Senate, and probably never will. They don’t have any spokespeople telegenic enough for Fox News. They’ve only been around since 1991, and they’ve only been called the Constitution Party since 1999. (They were the Taxpayers’ Party before that.) Basically, it’s a party for conservatives who think Republicans are too secular." - GOD AND COUNTRY, Kaleb Horton spends 36 hours with the dying embers of The Consitution Party
posted by The Whelk on May 23, 2016 - 20 comments

50 shades of pray

Perhaps the only kink you might not find in San Francisco, Christian Domestic Discipline is a community of women looking for a theological reading of sex and submission. [more inside]
posted by Another Fine Product From The Nonsense Factory on Apr 14, 2016 - 46 comments

Smells like holy spirit.

How Christianity Infiltrated Seattle Music with a Little Help from Mars Hill Church and the City Council: Thanks to a restrictive zoning ordinance, for a number of years the only consistently open venue for all-ages music in the city of Seattle was owned and operated by the now-defunct Mars Hill Church, headed by now-disgraced pastor Mark Driscoll (previously). Consequently, "Christian imagery continues to permeate post–Mars Hill Seattle music, though its tone and reception has shifted. Songwriters still approach the subject of faith in allegorical, roundabout ways. This is both a reflection of the complex relationship to faith, and a perfectly understandable aversion to guilt by association."
posted by Cash4Lead on Jan 20, 2016 - 12 comments

Stuck on Eden

Matt Schneider, who writes for the Christian publication Mockingbird, achieved a bit of viral fame back in 2014 when he wrote a critical assessment of Thomas Kinkade's body of work. He received some passionate responses from Kinkade's fans, which prompted a followup. Now, a year after that first response, Google has seen fit to push his original article near the top of hits for Kinkade searches, so he decided to take one more look at the beloved Christian painter: "Critical Thoughts on the Evangelical Embrace of Thomas Kinkade’s Escapist Art".
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Jan 15, 2016 - 28 comments

Isa ibn-Maryam (Jesus, son of Mary)

Why more American Muslims are celebrating Christmas this year: For many Muslims, Christmas activates all kinds of anxieties. A religious holiday that challenges the Muslim interpretation of Jesus, it’s also a secular celebration—almost impossible to avoid—which is far more influential than any Muslim celebration in the West. See also: 6 things you didn’t know about Jesus in Islam.
posted by Cash4Lead on Dec 24, 2015 - 53 comments

Chrindie '95

Chrindie '95: A collection of essays about a seminal year in Christian indie rock. [via mefi projects].
1995 was also an incredibly important year for the scene we've come to call “Chrindie,” for Christian indie rock. Much has been written about the weird world of contemporary Christian music, but whatever you think it is ,  you’d be surprised by how many genuinely great Chrindie records were released twenty years ago. During the course of the year, we’ve been writing about brilliant, beautiful, challenging, difficult, weird albums that went mostly unnoticed by mainstream radio and the music press and MTV, in part because they were released on tiny labels with no budgets and marketed primarily to evangelical teenagers in the suburbs.
[more inside] posted by naju on Dec 23, 2015 - 28 comments

Family Secrets and Secret Families: the Hidden Jews of New Mexico

Following the Christian Reconquest and unification of Spain, concluded with the marriage of Ferdinand II of Aragon and Isabella I of Castile, the victorious Catholic sovereigns decreed on March 31, 1492 that all Jews convert to Christianity or leave Spain by the last day of July. Whether they stayed or left, many Jewish families continued to practice their faith in secret. Such crypto-Jews passed their traditions down the generations and around the world, some ending up in the Southwest. 500 years later, New Mexico's "hidden Jews" were found among strong Hispanic Catholic communities. Though some were skeptical about the origins of certain family practices, additional research and a pattern of breast cancer lead to genetic testing and confirmation of prior beliefs. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 21, 2015 - 14 comments

The underlying message of the Neighborhood

"I can still hear him signing off his show similar to the way he concluded his letter to Amy Melder: “You’ve made this day a special day by just your being you. There is no person in the whole world like you, and I like you just the way you are.” Some have suggested that this message sought to instill children with a sense of self-importance, but to believe that is to fundamentally misunderstand Fred Rogers. At the core of Rogers’ mission was the paradoxical Christian belief that the way to gain one’s life is to give it away." (SL Atlantic)
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Nov 23, 2015 - 36 comments

Greek New Testament Papyrus: $99 + shipping and handling. Buy it now!

Greek New Testament Papyrus discovered on eBay. (NY Times)
posted by colfax on Nov 22, 2015 - 13 comments

Are you a real pirate?

God is God, and I am not. A lovely, long form account of a life well-lived.
posted by hydropsyche on Nov 19, 2015 - 12 comments

Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World

René Girard, literary theorist and religious historian, has died at the age of 91. The French-born academic and Immortel of the Académie Française first became famous for developing the idea of mimetic rivalry as a predominant theme in modern literature. Later, and more controversially, he argued for the centrality of violence and scapegoating in ancient religions, by which the sacrifice of a chosen victim restores peace in society. Most controversially of all, he argued that the Judeo-Christian tradition is unique in exposing and refuting this scapegoating mechanism. (Previously, previously)
posted by Cash4Lead on Nov 5, 2015 - 8 comments

Obama and Marilynne Robinson

President Obama & Marilynne Robinson: A Conversation in Iowa. "It seems to me as if democracy is the logical, the inevitable consequence of this kind of religious humanism at its highest level. And it [applies] to everyone. It’s the human image. It’s not any loyalty or tradition or anything else; it’s being human that enlists the respect, the love of God being implied in it."
posted by leesh on Oct 13, 2015 - 30 comments

What Happens When the 'Moral Majority' Becomes a Minority?

Conservative Christian communities are split between doubling down on their advocacy, or walling themselves off from mainstream culture. - Laura Turner, Atlantic [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Sep 28, 2015 - 127 comments

The Gospel According to Some Guy with Adobe Reader

"For nearly three years, there has been considerable controversy and confusion about whether a business-card sized papyrus fragment dubbed the Gospel of Jesus' Wife is an authentic ancient artifact or not. The current scholarly consensus already holds that the fragment is forgery. In addition, a recent development has confirmed that the Gospel of Jesus' Wife is a forgery created using a specific internet edition of the Gospel of Thomas [pdf]. It seems that the Gospel of Jesus' Wife forgery debate has finally come to an end. " [Previously]
posted by Knappster on Sep 9, 2015 - 16 comments

“I defer to no one in my love for America and for Christianity.”

Fear by Marilynne Robinson [New York Review of Books]
“There is something I have felt the need to say, that I have spoken about in various settings, extemporaneously, because my thoughts on the subject have not been entirely formed, and because it is painful to me to have to express them. However, my thesis is always the same, and it is very simply stated, though it has two parts: first, contemporary America is full of fear. And second, fear is not a Christian habit of mind. As children we learn to say, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for Thou art with me.” We learn that, after his resurrection, Jesus told his disciples, “Lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” Christ is a gracious, abiding presence in all reality, and in him history will finally be resolved.”
posted by Fizz on Sep 9, 2015 - 23 comments

Un-beeeee-LIEVABLE!

In 1986, ABC executive SQuire (sic) Rushnell attempted to begin a Christian franchise on par with the Care Bears with a live-action/animated special: Kingdom Chums: Little David's Adventure (multi-video version) (also adapted as a book). Only one of several attempts to continue the series came to fruition: the initially direct-to-video Kingdom Chums: Original Top Ten (multi-video version).
posted by BiggerJ on Sep 5, 2015 - 10 comments

‘‘What we are living is anarchy, war, death...."

"Is This the End of Christianity in the Middle East? ISIS and other extremist movements across the region are enslaving, killing and uprooting Christians, with no aid in sight." --a comprehensive piece by Eliza Griswold (SLNYTMP.)
posted by resurrexit on Jul 23, 2015 - 38 comments

if it turns out that I’m wrong, I trust God will be faithful to catch me

An Update on the Gay Debate: evolving ideas, untidy stories, and hopes for the church
While I struggle to understand how to apply Scripture to the marriage debate today (just like we all struggle to know how to interpret Scripture on countless controversial topics), I’ve become increasingly troubled by the unintended consequences of messages that insist all LGBT people commit to lifelong celibacy. No matter how graciously it’s framed, that message tends to contribute to feelings of shame and alienation for gay Christians. It leaves folks feeling like love and acceptance are contingent upon them not-gay-marrying and not-falling-in-gay-love. When that’s the case—when communion is contingent upon gays holding very narrow beliefs and making extraordinary sacrifices to live up to a standard that demands everything from an individual with little help from the community—it’s hard to believe our bodies might be an occasion for joy. It’s hard to believe we’re actually wanted in our churches. It’s hard to believe the God who loves us actually likes us.
[more inside] posted by imnotasquirrel on Jul 15, 2015 - 140 comments

“You can ruin my life when this show is over.”

"He sent me long emails about how I was a tool of the devil. I pictured him with two computer screens open — one for looking up scripture, and another to Mapquest the location of his next bathroom rendezvous. We were never going to have the cool kind of gay dad." Why I Answered My Dad's Gay Sex Ad by Aussa Lorens
posted by The Whelk on Jun 20, 2015 - 85 comments

Meet self-proclaimed freedom fighter Matthew VanDyke.

This Guy From Baltimore Is Raising a Christian Army to Fight ISIS… What Could Go Wrong?
posted by brundlefly on May 28, 2015 - 41 comments

The 2014 U.S. Religious Landscape Study

America’s Changing Religious Landscape: The Pew Research Center on Religion and Public Life has published the results of a new study of the religious affiliations of Americans, and finds a precipitous drop in the share of Christians since the last such study in 2007, along with a massive increase in the share of "nones" (which includes atheists, agnostics, and believers with no religious affiliation) and a small increase in the share of non-Christian faiths. Highlights below the fold. [more inside]
posted by Cash4Lead on May 12, 2015 - 135 comments

“Freedom Under God”

For much of the 1930s, organizations such as the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) had been searching in vain for ways to rehabilitate a public image that had been destroyed in the Great Depression and defamed by the New Deal. In 1934, a new generation of conservative industrialists took over NAM with a promise to “serve the purposes of business salvation.” How Corporate America invented Christian America.
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon on Apr 18, 2015 - 22 comments

Anthropology, already read

Déjà Lu republishes locally-selected scholarly articles from journals connected to regional anthropological associations around the world. The result is a PDF-heavy but fascinating collection of long reads on obscure topics. Via. [more inside]
posted by Monsieur Caution on Apr 18, 2015 - 4 comments

A Girl’s Guide to Sexual Purity

My friend Karla and I bought a book called And the Bride Wore White, a guide to remaining sexually pure. Three chapters of And the Bride Wore White are titled as follows: “Satan’s Big Fat Sex Lies,” “Satan’s Second Big Fat Sex Lie,” and “Satan’s Biggest, Fattest Sex Lie.” The book explained to me why condoms don’t work, why everyone isn’t “doing it,” and that oral sex is just as bad as intercourse. The author painstakingly outlined her own sexual foibles and missteps, honesty that I appreciated. I was ready to learn. I read the book steadily — during study breaks, walking through the hallways, before I went to sleep. Karla and I met at her house and talked about the different chapters while her mother brought us garden-grown beefsteak tomatoes that looked like hearts. We swore to strive for purity in every way possible. No more touching. No more being touched
Carmen Maria Machado writes about growing up, sexual assault, Christianity, family, realising your own queerness and more.
posted by MartinWisse on Mar 12, 2015 - 35 comments

Chinese Christianity

Religion in China: Cracks in the atheist edifice - "Yang Fenggang of Purdue University, in Indiana, says the Christian church in China has grown by an average of 10% a year since 1980. He reckons that on current trends there will be 250m Christians by around 2030, making China's Christian population the largest in the world. Mr Yang says this speed of growth is similar to that seen in fourth-century Rome just before the conversion of Constantine, which paved the way for Christianity to become the religion of his empire." [more inside]
posted by kliuless on Feb 1, 2015 - 47 comments

"I don't want you to hate me, and I don't want you to disown me."

Oklahoma. This was a place where Kathryn's workplace had a cussing jar, a quarter per swear, and the words written on it, “Let Go and Let God.” Here, Christianity was the religion — Tracy and Kathryn were believers — and Oklahoma football was the religion — Tracy and Kathryn were believers — and people could be decent and kind and judgmental, sometimes all at once, which was why, when Tracy told some Rotary Club friends that she and Kathryn were getting married, she kept her eyes planted above their heads so she wouldn't have to look at their faces.
posted by Rhaomi on Jan 24, 2015 - 70 comments

"The Bible is true, and some of it actually happened."

Marcus Borg has died at age 72. The liberal Christian theologian was one of the leading figures in the modern-day "quest for the historical Jesus," participating in the Jesus Seminar and writing prolifically about how best to interpret the Bible. [more inside]
posted by Cash4Lead on Jan 23, 2015 - 8 comments

December 25: Holiday

Montgomery County, Maryland's Board of Education is coming under backlash after it voted 7 to 1 on Tuesday night to eliminate references to all religious holidays on the published calendar for 2015-2016. The decision followed a request from Muslim community leaders to give equal billing to the Muslim holy day of Eid al-Adha. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on Nov 13, 2014 - 128 comments

They look nothing alike but they love each other.

"2013. In my Medieval Literature class at the University of Pittsburgh, we’re talking about Margery Kempe, a 14th century English woman who wanted very, very much to be a saint, one of the few roles an ambitious woman of her time could aspire to achieve. She talked a monk into writing down her dictated autobiography, a sort of proto-memoir/self-hagiography that – along with a lengthy explanation of how she convinced God to make her a virgin again after having 14 children – includes visions of interacting with the Christ child. There’s one in which she explains to Mary, the mother of God, how to diaper the baby." [more inside]
posted by jetlagaddict on Nov 10, 2014 - 15 comments

"She's a little Jezebel, that one. Painted face little Jezebel..."

Jezebel. The Painted Face. She is, as we've defined her, a scheming and shamelessly evil woman. She's Lolita and Eve. A woman of easy virtue. A temptress, a mistress and a courtesan.

Call her a hussy, hootchie, hooker, whore. Harlot. Jade. Vamp. Vixen. Tart, tease, trollop, tramp. Siren, seductress, strumpet, skank. Coquette, floozy. Wench, hoe. Loose. Slut. Minx.

Find a male equivalent. Look up "gigolo" in your handy thesaurus. Find "playboy," "socialite," "pleasure-seeker," "ladies' man." A stud, a player. A father, an uncle. A boy toy. A bachelor. A groom.
Anna Vodicka: On Modesty. [more inside]
posted by divined by radio on Nov 5, 2014 - 25 comments

All in the Family

The World Religions Tree [more inside]
posted by overeducated_alligator on Oct 13, 2014 - 65 comments

Dumbing of Age

As a college student, cartoonist and then-Christian fundamentalist David Willis wrote a newspaper funny called Roomies!, which inadvertently documented the beginning of his departure from his faith. Roomies! segued abruptly into a sci-fi drama after two years, which then branched into two new comics — one about domestic married life, and one about employees at a toy store.

In 2010, however, Willis began writing a new strip set in Indiana University, the same setting as his original Roomies! With Dumbing of Age, Willis takes advantage of the decade-and-a-half he spent developing his characters and refining his craft — but just as importantly, he brings to this new strip the perspective and wisdom of his own experiences with faith. It is an explicitly autobiographical comic, at the heart of which is the relationship between homeschooled Christian Joyce Brown and her best friend, Dorothy Keener, who is ambitious, studious, and unabashedly atheist. It is marvelously well-made, and even if you are not usually a fan of webcomics (I'm decidedly not), Dumbing of Age is worth your giving a look.
posted by rorgy on Oct 12, 2014 - 53 comments

Long live Þórr

In recent days, news stories have emerged about a wilderness expedition company, Amaruk, rejecting an applicant due to her religious beliefs and affiliation with a restrictive Christian evangelical school. [more inside]
posted by Lemurrhea on Oct 10, 2014 - 83 comments

The American Dream has really good PR.

Guernica: In propagating a vision of life that's about wealth in the individual, perhaps the influence of these churches lies in what they obscure.

Anthony Pinn: Right. It hides the larger problem. The problem is poverty. And it hides the problem. We often associate black churches with a history of protest. But prosperity gospel and megachurches tend to be rather soft on political issues. T.D. Jakes doesn't take a major stand on political issues. Creflo Dollar certainly doesn't.

But it's the American way. So it seems to me that what they are doing is training black people to be even more American. To buy into this system rather than critique it. And if you're not gaining from it, to assume that the problem's with you. It provides a spiritual lesson that's very similar to the idea of "poor people want to be poor; if they just worked harder they could have more." Here, spiritual people could have more if they were just more spiritual and lived out scripture more authentically. So the prosperity preachers are training people to be better US citizens [laughs].
Meara Sharma at Guernica talks to Anthony Pinn about the ongoing embrace of prosperity gospel by preachers and parishioners at black megachurches across America: Divine Acquisition. [more inside]
posted by divined by radio on Oct 7, 2014 - 35 comments

"Where ignorant armies clash by night."

Sea of Faith: a six-part documentary television series, presented on BBC television in 1984 by Don Cupitt. [youtube]
"The programme dealt with the history of Christianity in the modern world, focussing especially on how Christianity has responded to challenges such as scientific advances, political atheism and secularisation in general"
[more inside] posted by Fizz on Oct 7, 2014 - 4 comments

The Abortion Ministry of Dr. Willie Parker

"The protesters say they're opposed to abortion because they're Christian," Parker says. "It's hard for them to accept that I *do* abortions because I'm a Christian."
posted by cybercoitus interruptus on Aug 1, 2014 - 48 comments

Love and Death In the House of Prayer

A former member of a tight-knit college prayer group describes his community's disintegration — and how one of its members ended up dead.
posted by SkylitDrawl on Jun 19, 2014 - 68 comments

Jedi is not the 2nd most popular religion in any state? How disapointing

The second-largest religion in each state
Christianity is by far the largest religion in the United States; more than three-quarters of Americans identify as Christians. A little more than half of us identify as Protestants, about 23 percent as Catholic and about 2 percent as Mormon. But what about the rest of us?
posted by davidstandaford on Jun 5, 2014 - 104 comments

Can the evangelical church embrace gay couples?

A small but significant number of theologians, psychologists, and other conservative Christians are beginning to develop moral arguments that it’s possible to affirm same-sex relationships not in spite of orthodox theology, but within it. In books, academic journals, magazines, blog posts, speeches, conferences, and campus clubs, they are steadily building a case that there is a place in the traditional evangelical church for sexually active gay people in committed, monogamous relationships. They argue that the Bible, read properly, doesn't condemn such relationships at all—and neither should committed Christians.
Can the evangelical church embrace gay couples? Here Matthew Vines speaks to each of the 'clobber' passages used to attack homosexuality in engaging detail and describes his vision for the role of gay Christians in the church. (1:07:18) [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb on May 13, 2014 - 154 comments

Prayers get a new blessing

The Supreme Court ruled (PDF) this morning that the town of Greece, New York did not violate the Constitution by starting its public meetings with a prayer from a “chaplain of the month." [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen on May 5, 2014 - 167 comments

Why and When is Easter?

Easter is the most famous movable feast in our calendar. Its date appears to change unpredictably from year to year, and different branches of Christianity disagree on when exactly it should be marked. In some years, like 2014, western Christians and the Eastern churches (such as the Greek and Russian communities) celebrate Easter on the same Sunday – but that is not always the case. [via BBC]
posted by marienbad on Apr 21, 2014 - 84 comments

That's right. Somebody called the cops on Jesus.

Statue Of A Homeless Jesus Startles A Wealthy Community
posted by flapjax at midnite on Apr 13, 2014 - 165 comments

Eppur si muove

The Great Ptolemaic Smackdown is a nine-part series posted by sci-fi author and statistician Michael F. Flynn to his blog last year, covering the historical conflict between heliocentrism and geocentrism, with a special focus on Galileo. They are based on an article (pdf) by Flynn which originally appeared in the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Analog. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 8, 2014 - 10 comments

Why are Christians so concerned about sex?

Why are Christians so concerned about sex? When English interpretations of the New Testament talk about ‘sexual immorality’ they are really translating the Greek word porneia (πορνεία), it’s used almost every time the topic of sex comes up and often when talking about the worst sins in general. If you can really grok what Paul was talking about as he uses the root for the word over and over again (it appears 32 times in the New Testament) then the rest falls into place. Now porneia has always been translated into Latin as fornication, while being understood by many conservatives to just be a 1:1 stand in for ‘any sexual expression not between husband and wife’. However, Porneia in post-classical Corinthian Greek did not mean generic sexual sin, or even sex outside of marriage, at all exactly and neither did fornication in actual Latin. The truth, like in many things, is a little bit more complicated and a lot more interesting. TRIGGER WARNINGS AHEAD FOR DEPICTIONS OF SEXUAL EXPLOITATION IN CLASSICAL GREECE, ALSO AN NSFW VASE. (SFW version) [via mefi projects]
posted by jaduncan on Mar 26, 2014 - 108 comments

Being Gay at Jerry Falwell's University

"Yes?" she asked me, and the tone of her voice calmed me down. It was as if she was saying, Brandon, I already know what you want to tell me. Please, just say it. Brandon Ambrosino writes about coming out as a student at Jerry Falwell's Liberty University. Recently Ambrosino was hired for Ezra Klein's new journalism venture, Vox, a decision that has bred controversy. Andrew Sullivan explains, and defends him.
posted by shivohum on Mar 14, 2014 - 182 comments

Forgive me for being longwinded, but I was speaking from the heart.

As Gawker has done for a couple years now, they sent letters to all the U.S. death row inmates who have execution dates in the upcoming year. Texas inmate Ray Jasper, who is set to be executed later this month, responded with an incredible letter on his thoughts about the US justice system, race, Christianity, and society as a whole.
posted by gman on Mar 5, 2014 - 84 comments

The Bushel Basket

W.H. Auden had a secret life that his closest friends knew little or nothing about. Everything about it was generous and honorable. He kept it secret because he would have been ashamed to have been praised for it. [more inside]
posted by Diablevert on Mar 4, 2014 - 55 comments

Trusting God

Patrick Henry College has been called "God's Harvard." The tiny, elite school is considered a safe haven for fundamentalist evangelical Christians. It teaches a dominionist "Biblical Worldview" and has a uniquely religious campus culture (pdf) that emphasizes evangelical moral values. Which leaves female students in a particular bind: How do you report sexual assault at a place where authorities seem skeptical that such a thing even exists?
posted by zarq on Feb 18, 2014 - 154 comments

Apartheid in South Africa (1957) Documentary

This film produced by the United States Federal Government in 1957 explores South Africa's apartheid policy, focusing on issues such as race relations, political practices, and segregated dwellings. The footage very radically contrasts the bleakness of black life with the privileges enjoyed by most whites as well as including several interviews with black leaders, while also giving the architects of Apartheid a platform to defend themselves and their policies. (34:11)
A fascinating snapshot of the time.
[more inside] posted by Blasdelb on Feb 12, 2014 - 4 comments

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