Review: American Veda by Philip Goldberg

While I was traveling over the last few days, Religion Dispatches published a review I wrote of Philp Goldberg's American Veda: From Emerson and the Beatles to Yoga and Meditation, How Indian Spirituality Changed the West. Here's a bit of it: A Methodist church near my house advertises for “Gentle Yoga Classes” on one of those … Continue reading Review: American Veda by Philip Goldberg

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I Got a (Kinda) New Blogging Gig

I'm taking a small step up as a blogger. I've been blogging as a guest blogger over at Religion Dispatches for a while now. I've been writing a weekly review of religion in the news and I've also done some other posts here and there. I usually post a portion of these peices here and … Continue reading I Got a (Kinda) New Blogging Gig

Tim Pawlenty, Bad Fundamentalist

After producing a truly epic book advertisement, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty sat down for an interview with Christianity Today. Two of his answers early in the interview jumped out at me:   Your book encourages Christians to be involved in public issues. At what point might Christians rely too much on political solutions to current problems? I … Continue reading Tim Pawlenty, Bad Fundamentalist

Pawlenty stars in American Civil Religion: The Movie

Tim Pawlenty, the former governor of Minnesota and an unofficial candidate for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination, has released one heck of a political ad that masquerades as a book ad that looks like a movie trailer. The ad runs only a minute and fifteen seconds but it packs in a flurry of American religious and civic … Continue reading Pawlenty stars in American Civil Religion: The Movie

GOP Hopeful Herman Cain: Jesus was “The Perfect Conservative”

There's now officially a hat in the ring—or is it a pizza? Herman Cain, the man who saved Godfather's Pizza and argued against Bill Clinton's attempt at health care reform, has started a presidential exploratory committee. In a profile on Cain at Slate, David Weigel describes Cain's popularity among the Tea Party folk: When Cain speaks at conservative … Continue reading GOP Hopeful Herman Cain: Jesus was “The Perfect Conservative”

Religion Dispatches: Zeitgeist A Blend Of Skepticism, Metaphysical Spirituality, and Conspiracy

As Sarah noted, Good Morning America reported last week that Jared Loughner had been influenced by the documentary Zeitgeist, a film that depicts Christianity, 9/11, and federal banking as conspiracies meant for social control. Since that report, the internet has been abuzz with attempts to locate Zeitgeist—and Loughner—on either the right or the left. Much of the analysis of Zeitgeist … Continue reading Religion Dispatches: Zeitgeist A Blend Of Skepticism, Metaphysical Spirituality, and Conspiracy

Religion Dispatches: TV’s 9 Best Christmas (and 1 Festivus) Clips

Christmas is a time for television—at least it has been my whole life. Television is a cherished part of America's Christmas celebrations. A couple of weeks ago I confessed that everything I knew about Hanukkah I learned on TV. Now, with Christmas drawing near it is time to take a look at the odd genre of … Continue reading Religion Dispatches: TV’s 9 Best Christmas (and 1 Festivus) Clips

Religion Dispatches: WikiLeaks Strikes the Vatican, a Camel in the Pews, and Luke Skywalker Tolerance

A Catholic nun with a gambling habit (no pun intended) pled not guilty to accusations that she embezzled over $850,000 from New York’s Iona College. She worked in the school’s finance office. In West Palm Beach, Florida, a camel fell into pews full of spectators during a church nativity play. No people or animals were injured, though … Continue reading Religion Dispatches: WikiLeaks Strikes the Vatican, a Camel in the Pews, and Luke Skywalker Tolerance

Religion Dispatches: Julian Assange Nativity, Castro’s Hanukkah, & a Burger Blessing

Jesus will return on May 21, according to a billboard in Omaha. He really can’t get here before tax day? The Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights sent nativity scenes to all 50 state governors. WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange is represented in nativity scenes in Naples, Italy. A Dallas, Texas megachurch pastor is compiling a list of business that … Continue reading Religion Dispatches: Julian Assange Nativity, Castro’s Hanukkah, & a Burger Blessing

The Art of Mary, Assange in a Manger, and sacrilege at the Smithsonian

One of my favorite religious historians, Robert Orsi, has gotten into some hot water with R. R. Reno over at First Things. Orsi wrote this brief statement regarding the "Contending Modernities" project at Notre Dame University. Reno responded here and then again here. It seems to me Reno is questioning who gets to decided what … Continue reading The Art of Mary, Assange in a Manger, and sacrilege at the Smithsonian