April 17, 2012

In his Time magazine article, “Heaven Can’t Wait,” Jon Meacham contrasts two seemingly competing visions of heaven in contemporary Christianity. One prominent view envisions heaven as the ethereal place one goes when one dies.

April 15, 2012

The ninth song in our Orthodox Easter Sunday soundtrack comes from the Hover Chamber Choir of Armenia, "The Healing Bird." This track comes to you from the On Being playlist for "Restoring the Senses: Gardening and Orthodox Easter" with Vigen Guroian. Happy Pascha!

April 15, 2012

Continuing our string of sacred choral music songs of Armenia, a prayer to the patriarch titled “Hayrapetakan Maghan.” This track comes to you from the On Being playlist for “Restoring the Senses: Gardening and Orthodox Easter” with Vigen Guroian. Happy Pascha!

April 15, 2012

Recently I spoke to a class of college students — by way of Skype — in southern Minnesota. We talked about how religion is portrayed through news media. As often in my experience, this was a critical discussion about the narrow and often inflammatory way religion comes up, and usually in the context of politics.

April 11, 2012

The poet Christian Wiman was on our list for many moons, but his interview with Bill Moyers prompted us to schedule him for this show. A must-watch.

April 09, 2012

"I think gardening is nearer to godliness than theology. True gardeners are both iconographers and theologians insofar as these activities are the fruit of prayer 'without ceasing.'"
—Vigen Guroian

April 08, 2012

An Orthodox theologian sees crosses in the bloom of a bloodroot.

April 06, 2012

Maundy Thursday in HyerabadA Christian worshipper at the St. Alphonsus Church in Hyderabad during a Maundy Thursday service. (Photo by Noah Seelam/AFP/Getty Images)

April 05, 2012

Jason Russell of Invisible Children

As a social media nerd and a nonprofit worker with a heart for Africa, the past month has been fascinating. In that time we have witnessed the rise of the “KONY 2012” campaign and the fall of the mastermind behind it, Jason Russell.

On March 5th, an organization named Invisible Children launched an online movement to make Joseph Kony, a Ugandan war criminal and rebel leader known for his use of child soldiers, famous. The goal was to bring so much attention to him that governments would work together to bring about his arrest. Invisible Children produced a sleek thirty-minute video presenting this idea. The video went viral, racking up more than 86 million views.

March 23, 2012

Hunger Games Mall Tour - may the odds be ever in your favorFans give the three-fingered salute of District 12. The gesture is one of admiration, meaning thanks or goodbye to one’s beloved. (photo: Doug Kline / © 2012

I was certain I was going to hate it. All of my four kids have been fans of the series of books by Suzanne Collins since before they were cool; therefore when the movie was announced, we all knew the midnight screening on the night of release was a must-do.

But in the run-up to last night’s trip to the IMAX theater, the reviews I read and heard helped confirm my feeling that this would be a disgusting movie: violent, gratuitous in every way, repulsive to my social conscience.

I was wrong. Very, very wrong.

March 23, 2012

Women Inside and Outside of ChurchA woman tends to a child during a Sacrament Meeting of the Washington DC 3rd Ward at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Chevy Chase, Maryland. (photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images)

March 21, 2012

A collection of live-tweet highlights from Krista's interview with the poet and editor.

March 16, 2012

Twitter is trending, dominated by the news of Rowan Williams’ retirement. At the end of December this year, Williams will exit his post as the Archbishop of Canterbury and become the 35th Master of Magdalene College at the University of Cambridge.

Archbishop Williams’ successor will take on some challenging issues as the Church of England and the wider Anglican Communion of 77 million faces internal struggles and debates about the ordination of gay clergy and shrinking attendance. But the Church needs to choose the 105th Archbishop of Canterbury first. How is a successor chosen and who chooses

March 14, 2012

“‘The reforming groups in the West,’ Muhammad Abduh says, ‘brought their doctrines to a point closely in line with the dogma of Islam, with the exception of belief in the prophetic mission of Muhammad. Their religion was in all but name the religion of Muhammad; it differed only in the form of worship, not in the meaning or anything else.’”

February 24, 2012

Acknowledging a spiritual dimension may have more positive effects on physical and mental health than most people realize.

February 22, 2012

Contemplating“Contemplation” (photo: Kasia/Flickr cc by-nc-sa 2.0)

Ash Wednesday is today, inaugurating this year’s season of Lent. Cultural customs dictate “giving something up” for Lent. Without any meaningful or theological reflection, it becomes “giving up for the sake of giving up,” as though the mere act is enough. Is there more to it than just giving us something to talk about and a way to feel good about ourselves?

February 08, 2012

Splashing water onto tombShia mourners splash water onto a tomb during a traditional burial ritual in Bahrain. (phoot: Al Jazeera English)

When a video of U.S. Marines urinating on the dead bodies of Taliban fighters became international headline news last month, national dialogue around the incident centered mostly on its impact on U.S.-brokered peace talks, the safety of military personnel in the region, and the military culture that some argue contributed to the dehumanizing act. Largely absent from mainstream news media coverage, however, was any meaningful attempt to understand how the global Muslim community viewed the desecration of the corpses.

January 30, 2012

Church of Kopimism

There’s a new flying spaghetti monster in the spiritual marketplace: the Church of Kopimism. The newly “established” religion has become the talk of the internet, in part because of its transparently “unreligious” outlook and in part because of the group’s social perspective. The Church of Kopimism, which received official recognition as a religious denomination in Sweden, objects to what it calls the Copyright Religion and advocates free sharing of information by and for all. Though it lacks any particular resemblance to established religions, Kopimism has “beliefs and rituals,” which are held sufficient to establish it as a legal religious organization.