Posts tagged "religion and culture"

Say Little Prayers

News of the Silly: England’s General Register Office has revised rules that banned all religious references from civil marriage ceremonies to now allow the incidentally religious references to God, prayer, or grace that tend to appear in popular wedding songs like Aretha Franklin’s “I Say a Little Prayer.”

Playing for Him

So much for love of the game. Nicole Greenfield Baseball is a religious sport, there’s no doubt about it. During the course of a game, we see players mutter prayers before stepping into the batter’s box, point up to God after hitting one out of the park, or cross themselves after sliding safely into second....

We Are the Others

The generalizations used in the new “Religion is bad for society” study are a step backwards for social science. By Hally Hall-I Chu In the most recent issue of The Journal of Religion and Society, social scientist Gregory Paul published a study on the correlation between religiosity and societal problems in developed countries of the...

How the New Yorker Makes Rick Warren Safe for Secular Consumption

By J.J. Helland Too often, the media views the subject of religion in America as a strictly sociological study. Faith is to be interpreted on economic, political and cultural terms — anything other than as a significant set of religious beliefs that informs people’s lives. The most recent example of this approach is found in...

What’s So Secret About Islam?

By Vanessa Larson In August, U.S. News and World Report put out a “Collector’s Edition” called “Secrets of Islam: The essential guide to the world’s fastest growing religion.” While the endeavor seems eminently well-intentioned, the title is perhaps the magazine’s most problematic aspect. Why the need for the Orientalist-sounding word “secrets”? Does Islam really contain...

12 July 2005 Daily Links

Neil Young, Superstar: Doug LeBlanc at Get Religion is reporting that Neil Young and NPR are teaming up to kill God. That’s because Doug doesn’t know that Neil Young is God. Middle ground blahs: The NYT‘s Laurie Goodstein turns in an entirely servicable piece on the growing number of evangelical chaplains in the Air Force....

God Bless America — Or Else

Religious fascism at Yankee Stadium? Evangelical scholar and writer Randall Balmer says it’s so when singing “God Bless America” becomes a compulsory part of the ballgame. On the Christian site, The Matthew’s House Project.

Hey, Baby, You Wanna Check Out My Sword?

Reuters reports on the Christian “warrior” movement, inspired by author John Eldredge’s bestselling Wild At Heart and descended from poet Robert Bly’s Iron Johnmovement. Some members commission replicas of the sword wielded by Mel Gibson as William Wallace in Braveheart. Others simply recast their entire lives in military terms. Journalist Nigel Hunt reports with a gee-whiz-neato appreciation for the movement,...

23 September 2004 Daily Links

“‘If one’” — that’d be a gay person — “‘ever looks at me’” — and that would be Jimmy Swaggart — “‘like that, I’m going to kill him and tell God he died.’” GetReligion traces the history of Swaggart’s overheated “‘Louisiana mouth.’” Iraq’s most powerful Shiite leader, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Husseini al-Sistani, has threatened to withdraw his...

02 September 2004 Daily Links

From the Kerry war room, on the uses and abuses of scriptural metaphor. Melanie Hunter of CNSNews reports the story of a Reuters editor, Todd Eastham, who sent a critical email response to a press release issued by the National Right to Life Committee. The anti-abortion group questioned the editor’s “journalistic integrity,” and said “‘We can only wonder at how such...

30 August 2004 Daily Links

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, expressed frustration with “the rawness of the anger” which characterized the divisions in the Church of England and the worldwide Anglican communion, which has split over the issue of ordaining homosexual priests. “‘While we may disagree,’” said Williams, “‘we need to learn how to do it with a bit more...

26 August 2004 Daily Links

The Pope says “No” to cosmic energy and tragic spiritual vacuums. South Africa’s Inkatha Freedom Party — a long-time adversary of the African National Congress party, which assumed power after the end of apartheid — is emphasizing its “center-right” politics and hinting at an ANC defection to the IFP, reports The Mail and Guardian. The more...