Posts Tagged ‘Christianity’

Postscript to “The Danger in Being Ministerial”

When I wrote my recent post, “The Danger in Being Ministerial,” I omitted a couple of points. For one thing, the priest/ess vs. pastor — or cultus vs. social ministry — distinction is largely rhetorical. I do not mean to say that they cannot overlap, only that often they do not. Also, I am surprised […]

Marion Zimmer Bradley, Greenpeace, and the Donatists

Back in the 4th century CE, Western Christianity had a problem. During the Emperor Diocletian’s persecution of Christians, which began in 303 and was severe in some areas, some Christian clergy in the Berber communities of North Africa had surrendered copies of Scripture and otherwise complied with the emperor’s edicts. When Diocletian was replaced by […]

‘Cosmos’ Misrepresents Giordano Bruno

Neil Degrasse Tyson’s remake of Cosmos tries to remake Giordano Bruno as a martyr of modern science, but he was nothing of the kind. He was a lot more of an occultist. Even The Daily Beast gets it. As Discover magazine’s Corey Powell pointed out, the philosophers of the 16th century weren’t anything like scientists […]

The ‘Pentecostal Drift’ and Modern Paganism

Religion blogger Peter Berger, melding articles from  The Tablet (Roman Catholic) and The Christian Century (mainline Protestant) notes “the major demographic shift in world Christianity—the fact that more Christians now live in the Global South: Asia, Africa, Latin America—than in the old Christian homelands of Europe and North America.” With this shift goes huge growth […]

What Did Jesus Know about Rome?

An interesting short essay in which a historian conjectures just how much Jesus of Nazareth would have known about the Roman Empire, in which he lived. The assumption is that he spoke Greek as a second language; otherwise, how did he communicate with Pontius Pilate, not to mention the centurion of the miracle?

Heathenry and the Politics of Postcolonialism

Thad Horrell, Heathen and graduate student, hurls himself against the issue of post-colonialism and reconstructed Northern religion in this article, “Heathenry as a Postcolonial Movement,” published in the online Journal of Religion, Identity and Politics, written by students in his PhD program. His thesis is “that Heathenry is ‘postcolonial’  in complex and contradictory senses of the […]

Is the Church of England Desperate or Just Confused about Paganism?

With the obvious news peg of summer solstice celebrations at Stonehenge, the Telegraph reports on a rather odd initiative from the Church of England. The article begins, The church is training ministers to create “a pagan church where Christianity [is] very much in the centre” to attract spiritual believers. Ministers are being trained to create […]

A Country “Under Christian Occupation”

The BBC profiles some Hellenes — modern Greek Pagans — with minimal snark. [The summer solstice is] the most important annual festival for followers of The Return of the Hellenes – a movement trying to bring back the religion, values, philosophy and way of life of ancient Greece, more than 16 centuries after it was […]

‘Non-Christian’ License Plate Prompts Oklahoma Lawsuit

An Oklahoma court has cleared the way for Methodist clergyman Keith Cressman to sue the state over his objection to  imagery on that state’s license plate. The new license plates carry a photo of a statue called “Prayer for Rain,” of an Apache man shooting an arrow into the sky. His 2011 lawsuit in U.S. […]

Holy Jumpin’ Jehoshaphat

I knew that “St. Jehoshaphat” (or “Josaphat” of “Baarlam and Josaphat”) came from bodhisattva, but here is more about the Norse tale of the Buddha. The comments are interesting too.