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4 big myths of Book of Revelation

4 big myths of Book of Revelation

By John Blake, CNN Belief Blog….
You don’t have to be a student of religion to recognize references from the Book of Revelation. The last book in the Bible has fascinated readers for centuries. People who don’t even follow religion are nonetheless familiar with figures and images from Revelation. And why not? No other New Testament book reads like Revelation. The book virtually drips with blood and reeks of sulfur. Elaine Pagels, one of the world’s leading biblical scholars, first read Revelation as a teenager. She read it again in writing her latest book, “Revelations: Visions, Prophecy & Politics in the Book of Revelation.”

The Real, Dark, Doomsday Which Happens With Every Apocalypse…

The Real, Dark, Doomsday Which Happens With Every Apocalypse…

By Hannah Spadafora…..
Saturday, May 21st was set to be judgment day, the beginning of the end of the world. Harold Camping said so, and many people, upon hearing his prophecy through his unique Christian program on FamilyRadio.com, felt it deeply rang of truth. This left believers with many decisions to make on how to prepare for the end—or, more precisely, how to stop preparing for a future in a world which was nearly finished. It was posted on billboards, bellowing from bullhorns of trailer preachers, and eventually covered extensively, as a strange thing, on the news. And, according to followers, to have kept on living as if the world wasn’t about to be cast into judgment or rocked to its end would have been to show distrust in God’s plan. So, as the question of what one would do before they die merged with the question of what one would do to avoid hellish torture, some believers just stopped.

Religion, Lately: The Summer Solstice, Wildfire Meditation, and Cannabis Crackdowns

Religion, Lately: The Summer Solstice, Wildfire Meditation, and Cannabis Crackdowns

By Kenny Smith….
Despite heavy rain, 18,000 Neo-Pagans and New Agers gathered at Stonehenge, England, to welcome to Summer Solstice. With blazing wildfires just four miles away, Buddhist meditators in Arizona continue their three-year silent retreat, seeking inner as well as outer peace. In Seattle, “Christian Fightclub” minister Marc Driscoll and Mars Hill Church congregants greet Westboro Baptist protestors with love, handshakes, and a verbal smack-down: “This False Prophet and His Blind Lemmings Welcome You to Our Whore House for God’s Grace and Free Donuts.” Progressive “Emergent Church” Christians gather in North Carolina for “old time religion” summer revival. Want to smell like the Pope, with subtle hints of frankincense, bergamot, and citrus? Try the new pontifically-inspired fragrance, Benedictus.

The Good News of Star Visitors, Part II

The Good News of Star Visitors, Part II

By Kenny Smith…..
The similarities linking Camping and Boylan are likewise intriguing. Both offer dramatic, magical worldviews envisioning a new and improved human condition, whether in heaven (far from the screams of the damned) or upon a renewed earth and a galactic civilization. As such, both instantiate a stream of millennial thinking with a long history in American culture and by no means limited to institutional religion. Americans have been eager to export their styles of government, economics, science, technology, language, philosophy, medicine, entertainment, and social customs of all kinds, as well as religion, in an effort to lead the world into a new and better age. More personally, both Camping and Boylan are highly educated and experienced professionals, and their skill sets have helped to constitute their worldviews. Camping, a Berkeley-trained civil engineer, has spent decades studying the Bible and crunching the biblical numbers to arrive at his various predictions.

Prophets of the Environmental Apocalypse

Prophets of the Environmental Apocalypse

By Peter Laarman, Religion Dispatches…..
Twilight wars in the Middle East, Japan’s nuclear catastrophe, Deepwater Horizon, worldwide crop failures, massive die-offs of long-established species: it’s all so very scary. Looming over all of it is the idea that we foolish humans have triggered some deep-level physical processes (methane gas release, ocean acidification, etc.) that now possess an ominous life of their own. In these circumstances the word that slides naturally from the tongues of pundits is “apocalyptic.” It strikes many that we are now entering an apocalyptic scenario without precedent in recorded history.

Most U.S. Protestant Pastors Doubt Beck, Obama are Christians-Poll

Most U.S. Protestant Pastors Doubt Beck, Obama are Christians-Poll

By Ed Stoddard, Reuters FaithWorld…
Let’s start with Beck, who often speaks the political and even spiritual language of conservative evangelical Christians– and counts many as his fans – but cannot score theological points with them because of his Mormon faith. Many evangelicals regard The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as an oddball cult and the survey’s results show it may be as much a political liability for Beck the activist as it is for Mitt Romney the candidate, the former and perhaps future Republican presidential contender.