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Tag Archives: Judaism
What’s Good About Monotheism, Again? What Part Of It Is Worth Treasuring And Rooting For? And Why, Exactly, Is God Always Gendered Male?
Robbed, killed, raped, enslaved–all in the name of God. Ain’t monotheism grand? 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 … Continue reading
THE RELIGION TREE I. The leaf doesn’t fall far from the tree, and we are all leaves on the same tree, and will take our leave from here. II. The yellow leaf signals fall, the green leaf, pride before the fall. … Continue reading
This looks good and has gotten a lot of recent attention and critical acclaim. It has also generated controversy. It opens in New York and Los Angeles May 24, 2013. Directed by Rasha Burshtein, an Orthodox Jewish woman who lives … Continue reading
There are five major world religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. They can be judged by any number of criteria. Which one has the most admirable superhero? There are certainly compelling characters in four of the five: Jesus is awesome … Continue reading
Jews have been a part of Egypt and its history for over three thousand years, but Islamic fundamentalism’s steady rise in the country has absurdly driven their numbers literally into the dozens. A new documentary, made by an Egyptian and … Continue reading
John Corvino provides some pushback to biblical literalists on the subject of homosexuality: __________ And Marc Ambinder recently wrote a moving reflection on how difficult it still is for young gay teens: Since moving to Los Angeles, I’ve met a lot … Continue reading
In the 1930s and 40s, a great many Jews in Europe would have exercised their free will in the direction of Adolf Hitler’s head by putting a bullet in it, but God (if He exists) did not give a single Jew … Continue reading
Um, those allies would include those of us in the United States. __________ And we give them money. (Or, more accurately, we borrow money from the Chinese and then pass it on to the Egyptians.) Especially galling is when the cleric … Continue reading
In a recent interview, science writer Philip Ball talks about his new book on curiosity, and implicates religion in stifling it: It’s certainly true that the instinct to know more about our environment must go back as far as humanity … Continue reading
How does one extract God from the mob? The Catholic contemplative Thomas Merton, in his book New Seeds of Contemplation (originally published in 1962), made the following startling observations about strong hate: Strong hate, the hate that takes joy in hating, is … Continue reading
NYC Seeks Ban on “Dinosaur” and “Evolution” in Standardized Tests. Sam Wineburg Has a Wonderful Retort.
When CNN reported last week on the fifty words that the New York City Department of Education seeks to ban from its standardized tests, the list was discovered to include “dinosaur” and “evolution.” Fundamentalist Christian, Orthodox Jewish, Mormon, Jehovah Witness, … Continue reading
Leon Wieseltier, annoyed by what he regards as a dreadful translation of the Haggadah, offers an important distinction for would-be translators to consider: All translation is interpretation, since it is a choice among meanings; but translation is not the same … Continue reading
It certainly appears that Sheldon Adelson would have more than a little bit of responsibility for America’s war with Iran, should it occur. Here’s an alarming bit of background on Sheldon Adelson in the Financial Times on Sunday: Then there is Sheldon Adelson, … Continue reading
Arnaud De Borchgrave is a realpolitik conservative who’s 85 years-old, but he’s still in the game. Of Iran he recently wrote the following for the Washington Times: What former CENTCOM commanders and Israeli intelligence chiefs have in common is intimate knowledge of Iran’s formidable … Continue reading
This curious ad comes from the Israeli government. Its purpose is to discourage Israelis from marrying American Jews or moving to America (as either of these might lead to such horrors as Christmas-celebrating grandchildren). Andrew Sullivan sees the ad as … Continue reading
The intellectual and cultural rot of religious fundamentalism continues its 21st century spread. This is in Haaretz today: Secular and religious cabinet members engaged in a heated discussion over the issue of women’s rights in Israel on Sunday, forcing Prime … Continue reading
The Jerusalem Post today quotes Wim Kortenoeven expressing concern over Israel’s ongoing existence should Iran acquire nuclear weapons. Kortenoeven, described by the Post as “a leading expert on the Middle East” and an official of Holland’s Party of Freedom, is … Continue reading
The Jerusalem Post today quotes Ayatollah Mahmoud Alavi, a senior cleric in Iran, as saying that Israel (which he calls “the Zionist regime” and “a cornered cat”) “will receive a crushing response from the Islamic Republic” if it tries to take out Iran’s … Continue reading
Maybe. The Jerusalem Post reported yesterday that Israel’s president, Shimon Peres, . . . believes Israel is closer to utilizing the military option in dealing with Iran’s nuclear program than it is to finding a diplomatic solution to the threat. . … Continue reading