What Winter Solstice Rituals Tell Us About Indigenous People

What Winter Solstice Rituals Tell Us About Indigenous PeopleOn the day of winter solstice, many Native American communities will hold religious ceremonies or community events.The winter solstice is the day of the year when the Northern Hemisphere has the fewest hours of sunlight and the Southern Hemisphere has the most.

A Dangerous Prayer: "Show Me TheTruth"

A Dangerous Prayer: "Show Me TheTruth"A woman told me that gratitude was her constant prayer, and I was impressed. But, I realized that her gratitude was actually a defense against life. 'I am so grateful for sunshine, health, my wonderful family'. 'Do you express gratitude for the storms, for the illness, for the down times too?'...

What Einstein Meant By God Does Not Play Dice

What Einstein Meant By God Does Not Play Dice‘The theory produces a good deal but hardly brings us closer to the secret of the Old One,’ wrote Albert Einstein in December 1926. ‘I am at all events convinced that He does not play dice.’

What Is The Buddha? Who Is The Buddha?

What Is The Buddha?  Who Is The Buddha?The Buddha is a documentary by David Grubin and narrated by Richard Gere that tells the story of the Buddha's life, and attempts to answer the questions Who is the Buddha. What is the Buddha. It also features the work of some of the world's greatest artists and sculptors

Why Hanukkah's True Meaning Is About Survival

Why Hanukkah's True Meaning Is About Jewish SurvivalBeginning on the evening of Dec. 2, 2018, Jews are celebrating the eight-day festival of Hanukkah, perhaps the best-known and certainly the most visible Jewish holiday.

Control Your Attention and Empower Your Mind

Control Your Attention and Empower Your MindIt is possible for the mind to become disempowered. It feels then as if reality is just a given, and all we can do is try to deal with it. The disempowered mind feels it has no choice about what it attends to. Training the attention is definitely one way to begin empowering the mind.

Why The History Of Messianic Judaism Is So Fraught And Complicated

Why The History Of Messianic Judaism Is So Fraught And Complicated

When Loren Jacobs, member of the Shma Yisrael Congregation, offered a prayer for the victims of the Tree of Life congregation at a campaign rally attended by Mike Pence, it left many Jews feeling very upset. The vice president’s office later denied inviting Jacobs to the event.

Every Wish Is Like A Prayer: Is Anyone Listening?

Every Wish Is Like A Prayer: Is Anyone Listening?Prayer can be a most difficult and trying task. The experiences of our century with its massive blind destruction, suffering, and carnage cast doubt on the concept of a God involved in the welfare of the created universe.

Overcoming Adversities Is Part Of The Spiritual Path

Overcoming Adversities Is Part Of The Spiritual PathIt's very easy for you to be wholesome and virtuous and spiritual when things are going right. But as soon as a little bit of adversity arises, then the real test begins, especially when you look at how you deal with your family life..

Religion Is About Emotion Regulation, And It’s Very Good At It

Religion Is About Emotion Regulation, And It’s Very Good At It
Religion does not help us to explain nature. It did what it could in pre-scientific times, but that job was properly unseated by science. Most religious laypeople and even clergy agree: Pope John Paul II declared in 1996 that evolution is a fact and Catholics should get over it. No doubt some extreme anti-scientific thinking lives on, but it has become a fringe position.

How To Connect with The Powerful Healing Life-Force Within You

In Partnership with the Divine: Being One with GodAll disease, illness, unhappiness, misery, and self-punishment could be healed if we apply two principles of truth into our daily consciousness. The first is that there is a single, divine God that is All in all; and the second, that the Divinity which we call God lives inside of each and every one of us. Knowing deeply and believing completely at every level of our being that we are not separate from God, that we are one with the Divine, will heal us.

Why Did The Pope Phone The Renowned Gay, Communist Philosopher?

Why Did The Pope Phone The Philosopher?
This summer, during the FIFA World Cup, I went with some friends to watch a soccer game at the house in Turin of the Italian philosopher and former member of the EU parliament Gianni Vattimo. As soon as our team began to lose, Vattimo said: ‘Oh, by the way, I forgot to tell you, the pope called me yesterday.’

The Trump Prophecy And Other Christian Movements

The Trump Prophecy And Other Christian Movements

A new film, “Trump Prophecy,” will be shown in some limited theaters on Oct. 2 and 4. The film is an adaptation of a book, co-authored by Mark Taylor, a retired firefighter, who claimed he received a message from God in 2011 that the Trump presidency is divinely ordained.

Why Atheists Are Not As Rational As Some Like To Think

Why Atheists Are Not As Rational As Some Like To Think

Many atheists think that their atheism is the product of rational thinking. They use arguments such as “I don’t believe in God, I believe in science” to explain that evidence and logic, rather than supernatural belief and dogma, underpin their thinking. But just because you believe in evidence-based, scientific research – which is subject to strict checks and procedures – doesn’t mean that your mind works in the same way.

The Rainbow: Symbol of the Seven Paths to God

The Rainbow: Symbol of the Seven Paths to God
The seven directions and the seven chakras reveal seven paths to God. Although we will discuss these paths in a sequence that may seem linear, one path is no more "advanced" than another. They are simply different expressions, distinct rays of energy that each of us embody.

How An Ancient Islamic Holiday Became Uniquely Caribbean

A throng of Trinidadians line up along the streets of St. James and Cedros to admire the vibrant floats with beautifully bedecked models of mausoleums. Their destination is the waters of the Caribbean, where the crowds will push them out to float.

Healing The World: Beyond Science, Religion, and Materialism

Healing The World: Moving Beyond Science, Religion, and Materialism
As an academic - a researcher and senior lecturer at a university in the UK - people are often surprised by my unorthodox views on the nature of life, and of the world. For example, when I mention to colleagues that I’m open-minded about the possibility of some form of life after death, or that I believe in the possibility of paranormal phenomena such as telepathy or pre-cognition, they look at me as if I’ve told them I’m going to give up academia and become a truck driver.

What's the Goal? Being A Buddhist, or Being A Buddha?

What's the Goal? Being A Buddhist, or Being A Buddha?
Buddhism explains the profound truths of life. But it also provides an immensely practical method for overcoming obstacles and transforming oneself. It can be applied to every area of your existence: family, work, relationships, health. And it can be applied by anyone. Each and every human being contains the inherent capacity to be a Buddha

What The First Bible Was Like?

What The First Bible Was Like?
In the years after Jesus was crucified at Calvary, the story of his life, death and resurrection was not immediately written down. The experiences of disciples like Matthew and John would have been told and retold at many dinner tables and firesides, perhaps for decades, before anyone recorded them for posterity.

Is Religion A Universal In Human Culture Or An Academic Invention?

Is Religion A Universal In Human Culture Or An Academic Invention?
If anything seems self-evident in human culture, it’s the widespread presence of religion. People do ‘religious’ stuff all the time; a commitment to gods, myths and rituals has been present in all societies. These practices and beliefs are diverse, to be sure, from Aztec human sacrifice to Christian baptism, but they appear to share a common essence. So what could compel the late Jonathan Zittell Smith, arguably the most influential scholar of religion of the past half-century, to declare in his bookImagining Religion: From Babylon to Jonestown (1982) that ‘religion is solely the creation of the scholar’s study’, and that it has ‘no independent existence apart from the academy’?

Increasing the Light and Co-Creating Peace

Increasing the Light and Co-Creating Peace
Spiritual creativity is a way of life, a way of wholeness. It is a path of integrity. Integrity entails not just a few beliefs or specific acts, but an attitude that we adopt and practice in our everyday lives...an ongoing process that can bring you much joy.

Compassion is a Verb, Not A Feeling

compassion
Compassion is not a thought or a sentimental feeling, but is rather a movement of the heart. Compassion is born out of lovingkindness. But we may get distracted, we forget, we get caught up in something else, or we confuse another feeling for the state of compassion.

What Is The Christian Idea Of “Heaven”?

What Is Heaven? Illustration of Dante’s Paradiso
When a family member or a friend passes away, we often find ourselves reflecting on the question “where are they now?” As mortal beings, it is a question of ultimate significance to each of us.

What It Means To Be A Christian In America Today

What It Means To Be A Christian In America Today
Americans have debated what it means to be religious in politics throughout American history. Because a wide majority of Americans have claimed some form of Christian belief, these debates focused on Christianity. And they continue today.

Why Being A Progressive Christian Shouldn't Be An Oxymoron

Why Being A Progressive Christian Shouldn't Be An Oxymoron
The kind of Christianity that makes headlines today is the Mike Pence brand – conservative and aligned with the United States Republican party – leaving many people to believe, including progressive Christians, the religion is politically irredeemable.

Walking the Mystical Path of Oneness

Walking the Mystical Path of Oneness
It is fair to say that many folks today are abandoning tra­ditional religion in favor of a deeper, more contemplative spiritual life. Mysticism is becoming more mainstream, and religious dogma is less likely to be accepted without ques­tion.

The Power of I Am: Let the Weak Say "I Am Strong"

The Power of I Am: Let the Weak Say "I Am Strong"
Run through as large an inventory as you can of the things that you would like to define your life. Then make the shift in your imagination from an "I am not" or "I am hoping to become" to "I am". Beginning with your inner dialogue, simply change the words that define your concept of yourself.

How To Transform Lives by Dealing with Our Emotions and Feelings

Transforming Lives: Dealing with Emotions and Feelings
When I came to the United States, people did not seem to know very much about Buddhism. We Tibetans realized that it would be beneficial to teach and explain the dharma. We began to talk to people about how to create peace within their heart and peace within the world. We taught how to move beyond suffering.

Jesus Was A Brown-Skinned, Middle Eastern Jew And Why That Matters

jeseus 4 1I grew up in a Christian home, where a photo of Jesus hung on my bedroom wall. I still have it. It is schmaltzy and rather tacky in that 1970s kind of way, but as a little girl I loved it. In this picture, Jesus looks kind and gentle, he gazes down at me lovingly. He is also light-haired, blue-eyed, and very white.

10 Things To Know About The Real St. Patrick

10 Things To Know About The Real St. PatrickOn March 17, people around the world will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by parading in green hats, sporting images of shamrocks and leprechauns

The Greatest Moral Challenge Of Our Time Is How We Think About Morality Itself

The Greatest Moral Challenge Of Our Time Is How We Think About Morality Itself
It would be easy to conclude that there’s a deficit of morality in the world today. That if only people were more motivated to behave ethically, if only they made morality more prominent in their thinking, then the world would be a better place. But, I’d argue that there’s not a lack of morality in the world; there’s too much.

Everything You Think, See, And Do Is A Prayer

Life Is Your Prayer and A Continuous Request to the Universe
Life is a prayer in the sense that it is a continuous request to the universe. God understands our desires not just through the occasional utterances that we call "prayers" in the traditional sense, but through every thought we think, every word we speak, and everything we do.

Opening the Door of Communication to the Voice of Our Spiritual Power

Opening the Door of Communication to the Voice of Our Spiritual Power
Although the Voice for God is always present and available, God will not speak to us until we have invited Him/Her to enter our awareness. This is the first step in aligning ourselves with our spiritual power. It is the only step that we must take on our own, in that it is the step of inviting and calling upon the Holy Spirit, Voice for God, or Universal Mind.

Finding Peace and Happiness: Three Aspects of the Buddhist Path

Finding Peace and Happiness: Aspects of the Buddhist Path
Buddhist teachings are often summarized in terms of the "three principle aspects of the path": renunciation, compassion, and the wisdom realizing emptiness. The first step on the path of renunciation is to begin searching for happiness within. Renouncing the world does not mean rejecting the world...

Britannia, Druids And The Surprisingly Modern Origins Of Myths

Britannia, Druids And The Surprisingly Modern Origins Of Myths
The new TV series Britannia, which has won plaudits as heralding a new generation of British folk-horror, is clearly not intended to be strictly historical. Instead director Jez Butterworth gives us a graphic re-imagining of Britain on the eve of the Roman conquest.

How To Become A Magnet For "Luck" and Success

How To Become A Magnet For "Luck" and SuccessCertain attitudes are automatically more magnetic than others. Willingness, cheerfulness, kindness—all wholesome, spiritual attitudes are magnetic. Unwillingness, discouragement, and similar negative attitudes, on the other hand, impair the free flow of energy.

Archetypes of the Divine Human and our Hidden Potential

Archetypes of the Divine Human and our Hidden PotentialSavior archetypal figures reflect a common longing for a new Divine Human. Rather than being copycat myths, they represent allegories of humanity’s universal mystical potential for divine incarnation and the restoration of a sacred universe. The Divine Human comes to heal the culture’s abandonment of the realized divine.

Do You Believe in Miracles? I Don't, But...

Do You Believe in Miracles? I Don't, But...The perfect parking place shows up every time. Teeth with cavities grow new gold fillings seconds after a healer prays. The perfect house becomes available, a job opens, money multiplies, the right people appear... I don’t “believe” in miracles like these; I see them in my daily life...

A Short Course in Manifestation: The First Step in Spiritual Mastery

A Short Course in Manifestation: The First Step in Spiritual Mastery
Realizing that we create everything we experience - no matter how positive or negative it may seem - is the first step in spiritual mastery. But it's only the beginning. Trying to satisfy the endless needs of the ego leads to complete disillusionment. I'm a strong proponent of viewing acts of service as a...

What History Really Tells Us About The Birth Of Jesus

What History Really Tells Us About The Birth Of Jesus

I might be about to ruin your Christmas. Sorry. But the reality is those nativity plays in which your adorable children wear tinsel and angel wings bear little resemblance to what actually happened.

How Some Interfaith Families Solve The December Dilemma

How Some Interfaith Families Solve The December DilemmaAmerican families blend a mix of religious identities and traditions today more than ever. These interfaith dynamics appear in day-to-day life, but the holidays can add extra emphasis.

How Cult Leaders Exploit A Basic Psychological Need

How Cult Leaders Exploit A Basic Psychological NeedCharles Manson, who died Nov. 19, famously attracted a coterie of men and women to do his bidding, which included committing a string of murders in the late-1960s.

Prayer Works With or Without Religion: Try It

Prayer Works: Try It and Persist!There is a large billboard sign along the Saw Mill River Parkway north of New York City that reads in big bold letters, “Prayer Works.” There are no other words on the sign. A man named Tom rode by that sign every single day on his way to work. He did not believe in prayer and he scoffed at the sign each day.

Do You Really Ask for Help When You Need It?

Do You Really Ask for Help When You Need It?I ask you to think about this question: do you really ask for help when you need it? If the answer is yes, do you ask for assistance with the little things in your life or only the big-ticket items? And who or what defines little...

What is Karma And What Are Its Effects?

What is Karma And What Are Its Effects?Each of us creates our own karma. Our past thoughts, speech and behavior have shaped our present reality, and our actions (and thoughts and speech) in the present will in turn affect our future. The Buddhist doctrine of karma is not fatalistic. Karma is...

You Are A Miracle! The Mysticism and Mystery of Life

You Are A Miracle! The Mysticism and Mystery of LifeThe deepest mystery, and perhaps the one for which there will never be an answer that will completely satisfy the itch of the intellect, is the miracle of Life itself. In his book The Living Universe, Duane Elgin writes, “American Indian lore speaks of three miracles. The first miracle is that...

8 Things You Need To Know About Poltergeists

8 Things You Need To Know About PoltergeistsHalloween is the time of year when interest in the paranormal peaks and people celebrate all things supernatural. Of particular fascination are stories and tales of ghosts and ghouls and poltergeists.

On Science and Faith and Healing

On Science and Faith and HealingFor every study that suggests a research link between prayer and healing, there are countless counter-arguments, rejoinders, rebuttals, and denials from legions of well-meaning “authorities,” whose principal motivation seems to be to save people from their own faith.

Are Religious People More Moral?

Are Religious People More Moral?A recent study we conducted, led by psychologist Will Gervais, found widespread and extreme moral prejudice against atheists around the world.

How A Growing Christian Movement Is Seeking To Change America

How A Growing Christian Movement Is Seeking To Change AmericaFrom Oct. 6 to 9, 2017, the National Mall in Washington, D.C. was filled with tents, worship music and prayer for the “Awaken the Dawn” rally. The purpose of the event, according to organizer Lou Engle, was to “gather around Jesus,” to pray for the nation and its government. It ended with a day of prayer by Christian women.

What Business Can Learn From Buddhism

What Business Can Learn From BuddhismMillennials, we are told, have a different attitude to work than their elders. They want to work for organisations committed to values and ethics, where there is a higher purpose than simply making a profit.

How to Reconnect with Oneness and Rediscover the Garden of Eden

Oneness: Rediscovering the Garden of EdenSome religious teachings may start out as lessons in Oneness but, over time, they become distorted, reinterpreted to be a lesson that justifies duality. The ancient story of Adam and Eve is one example. A common version of the story explains that humankind is doomed to live in misery because...

Sex And Spirit: The Many Faces Of Ecstasy

Sex And Spirit: The Many Faces Of EcstasyThe Ecstasy of St Teresa of Avila (1647-52) by 17th-century Italian sculptor Gian Lorenzo Bernini is one of the most famous images of the Baroque period. Located in the Cornaro Chapel, Church of Santa Maria della Vittoria, Rome, the marble sculpture represents Saint Teresa of Ávila, a Spanish nun canonised in 1622, sprawled on a cloud with an angel.

The Zen of Listening: Why Mindful Listening Makes a Difference

The Zen of Listening: Why Mindful Listening Makes a DifferenceMisunderstanding, not being heard, and missing key information due to poor listening are at the crux of societal ills. One of the main reasons we listen poorly is because our internal noise levels are so turbulent and obtrusive that they mask most of what others are saying. Only bits and pieces of their message survive the...

Acceptance Is Seeing the Heart of Others

The New Spirituality: Love and TogethernessReligion has been a divisive force for thousands of years. Yet religions have done much good. They have offered comfort and hope to the masses at a time when their consciousness was closed to true spirituality.

The Law of Your Life: Looking Into The Present With Joy

The Law of Your Life: Looking Into The Present With JoyWe do live in a spiritual universe, a universe that is intelligent and creative, and it is a thing of law and order. The universal Mind contains all knowledge. It is the potential ultimate of all things. To It all things are possible...

Does Being Religious Or Spiritual Make You More Ethical At Work?

Does Being Religious Or Spiritual Make You More Ethical At Work?Can religion and spirituality promote ethical behaviour in the workplace? It’s a contentious issue, but our research comprising interviews with forty Indian top level executives suggests it might.

Why The Catholic Church Bans Gluten-free Communion Wafers

Why The Catholic Church Bans Gluten-free Communion WafersA 2017 letter from the Vatican reminded the world’s Catholic bishops of a rule mandating the use of wheat gluten for the celebration of the Eucharist, a Christian liturgical service called the Mass by Catholics.

Are Natural Disasters Part Of God's Retribution?

Are Natural Disasters Part Of God's Retribution?Conservative Christian pastor John McTernan argued recently that “God is systematically destroying America” out of anger over “the homosexual agenda.” There were others who disagreed over the reasons for God’s anger, but not necessarily with the assumption that God can be wrathful.

A Shamanic Journey To Heal Asthma

A Shamanic Journey To Heal AsthmaSoul retrieval is one of the most effective and well-known practices to restore lost life force. The loss of life force is known as soul loss, and this can take place when we suffer a trauma—an accident, separation from a partner, the death of a loved one--or go through a pervasive period of difficult circumstances.

Discovering the True Sources of Happiness and Unhappiness

source of happinessThe fact that we do not have a well-developed science of happiness today is really quite bizarre. We have an embryonic start in positive psychology, but why weren’t scientists studying happiness from the beginning, when Copernicus was studying the stars? This lack was demonstrated vividly in 1989, when the Dalai Lama...

Is God a Terrorist or Is the Absence of Love the Terrorist?

Is God a Terrorist? Is God a terrorist? No, obviously not. God is love. But not everyone agrees with that. “God is on our side” has been a rallying battle cry since religion was invented. But it’s inaccurate to blame religious differences for our bloody history of killing each other.

How To Lift The Seven Veils of Illusion on the Path to Enlightenment

How To Lift The Seven Veils of Illusion on the Path to EnlightenmentThe journey to enlightenment is the removal of the seven veils of illusion. They can more easily be removed during moments of cosmic light or in special meditations. Alternatively you may wake up one morning feeling that things are different. A veil may have been released during your spiritual journey of the night...

Why We All Need To Walk a Mile in Someone Else's Religion

Walking a Mile in Someone Else's Religion by Steven GreenebaumI was for a number of years the choir director of a First United Methodist choir while all the while remaining, in my own offbeat way, a practicing Jew. Some may see my actions as hypocritical, but I do not. I learned a lot by becoming involved in the music and ritual of another religion.

How to Heal Your Fear-Based Thoughts and Discover Peace

How to Heal Our Fear-Based ThoughtsI realized that peace was the complete absence of fear. It was the feeling of true, pure, untarnished love, the light that shines in all of us, free of any fear-based thoughts or beliefs.So I ask the question: Is it possible to experience that peace on earth? I’m not sure, but I think it’s worth asking for.

A Profound Truth, Not A Cliché: We Are All In This Together

A Profound Truth, Not A Cliché: We Are All In This TogetherThe words 'We are ALL One' have reverberated through the hearts and minds of Humanity in one form or another since the beginning of time. They do not express a lofty platitude or a sweet cliché even though our lower human egos have often perceived them as such. They profess a profound Truth.

What Sharia Law Really Means

Sharia in Arabic means “the way,” and does not refer to a body of law. Sharia in Arabic means “the way,” and does not refer to a body of law.

Just What Is The Shia-Sunni Religious Divide?

Just What Is The Shia-Sunni Religious Divide?The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for two attacks that claimed at least 12 lives in Iran on Wednesday. With this, the flaring tensions between Sunnis and Shias are once again in the news.

The Nature Of Evil: Is Evil A Concept, An Entity or A Behavior?

The Nature Of Evil: Is Evil A Concept, An Entity or A Behavior?Every culture has had its own concept of evil or the devil. In Genesis, there is the famous temptation of Adam and Eve by evil—personified by the snake. While the Hebrew Bible mentions Satan by name only in the book of Job, the idea of evil permeates Jewish mystical and religious thought.

Hag, Temptress Or Feminist Icon? The Witch In Popular Culture

Hag, Temptress Or Feminist Icon? The Witch In Popular CultureYou would have thought that Western society might have grown out of the habit of portraying powerful women as witches, but a trope that usually ended badly for women in the Middle Ages is still being used in the 21st century.

5 Rational Arguments Why God Probably Exists

einstein 5 12The question of whether a God exists is heating up in the 21st century. According to a Pew survey, the percentage of Americans having no religious affiliation reached 23 percent in 2014. Among such “nones,” 33 percent said that they do not believe in God – an 11 percent increase since only 2007. The Conversation

Every Footstep Is The Journey On Our Sacred Trail

Every Footstep Is The Journey On The Sacred TrailThe first time I actually saw a rainbow, its quiet beauty struck my heart with such awe that it touched something deep within me. Just seeing a rainbow catches you quite off guard and somehow just makes you stop and look ... and wonder.

Is The Death Penalty Un-Christian?

death penalty 4 30

Arkansas executed a fourth prisoner on death row last night. Three days prior to that, the state had done two back-to-back executions by lethal injections in Lincoln County, Arkansas.

Can A Community Be Built On Diversity? The Mormon Church Provides Its Answer

Why It's Time For The Mormon Church To Revisit Its Diverse PastIn an era where traditional church attendance has declined and the fastest-growing religious affiliation in America is the “nones” – those who claim no affiliation with an organized faith – The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has continued to expand. The Conversation

How To Gain Inner Strength and Empowerment

How To Gain Inner Strength and EmpowermentMany people are weakened by the influences of others. Negative messages from parents, teachers, clergy, peers, the media, and other manipulative powers hold sway and weigh them down. In a web of confusion and fear, they...

Who Are The Coptic Christians?

Who Are The Coptic Christians?On Palm Sunday, April 9, the Islamic State targeted two Coptic churches in coordinated bombings in the Egyptian cities of Tanta and Alexandria.

Is Temptation Such A Bad Thing?

The Washington Post recently published a profile on Karen Pence, the “prayer-warrior wife” of Vice President Mike Pence.

The Washington Post recently published a profile on Karen Pence, the “prayer-warrior wife” of Vice President Mike Pence.

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