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Jews and Turks: Centuries of Goodwill

Jews and Turks: Centuries of Goodwill

Although our culture is well versed on the horrifying events of World War II, the story of the Turkish Jews is one that has unfortunately slipped into obscurity. In this time of religious discord, I believe it is important to remember that it has not always been so and that, contrary to popular media portrayals, religious differences do not, for the vast majority, signify hatred, distrust, or the negation of humanity.

Europe's Battle of the Burqa

Europe’s Battle of the Burqa

The veil, Islam’s most controversial symbol, is not the primary issue but has come to symbolize the clash between western secular society and the determined attempt of Muslims to push back against secular cultures that are uncomfortable with public and political displays of religious devotion. Let’s face it, the veil makes many of us uncomfortable; especially for those from secular societies.

What Do Americans Really Know About Islam?

What Do Americans Really Know About Islam?

Let’s face it; Americans know more about the sex lives of Tiger Woods and Jesse James than they do about Islam. If Arabs do not make up the majority of Muslims—who does? According to the Pew Research Center’s informative report, Mapping the Muslim World, “more than 60% of the global Muslim population is in Asia and about 20% in the Middle East and Northern Africa.”

Rise of the Jedi Religion

Rise of the Jedi Religion

Followers of the Jedi religion/philosophy follow the way of the Jedi and live by the Jedi Code. Like all other religions, established or new, Jediism is complex and extremely diverse. Having no central authority, each Jedi organization is independent and therefore has differing philosophical and theological beliefs. For the most part, Jedi organizations are democratic in nature and majority vote is necessary to implement any changes in church structure or doctrine.

Remembering The Holocaust

Remembering The Holocaust

“How does the Jewish world community deal with this inevitable and pressing challenge to remember after there are no more survivors of the actual events but only eyewitnesses to the eyewitnesses?” Berenbaum spoke of how Jewish communities were “obligated to remember and had an obligation to remember how to remember.”

Scientology: Religion or Space Opera?

Scientology: Religion or Space Opera?

These body-thetans are said to have been ‘killed’ in a vast explosion instigated by the galactic tyrant Xenu many millions of years ago. In New Religions: A Guide, Andreas Grunschloss classifies Scientology as a “non apocalyptic Ufology” movement based on the teachings of L. Ron Hubbard. Religious ufology movements are religions that incorporate

Westboro Baptist Church: Religion Gone Wrong

Westboro Baptist Church: Religion Gone Wrong

Westboro “demonstrations” are in reality acts of emotional and religious terrorism cloaked in the guise of a distorted Christian worldview and protected by the first amendment. Religion Nerd is adding a new category called Hall of Shame which is reserved for those who use/manipulate religion for their own benefit regardless of the cost to others. Fred Phelps is the first inductee.

To Veil or Not to Veil?

To Veil or Not to Veil?

Approximately what percentage of Muslims wear the full burka? The Quran does not prescribe the covering or “veiling” of women. In attempting to answer this challenging and complex question I will first give a brief historical overview on the practice of hijab or “veiling” in Islam.

Easter – Christian, Jewish, Pagan?

Easter – Christian, Jewish, Pagan?

Easter (Pascha in Greek and Latin) is arguably the most important feast in the Christian liturgical year yet the modern Easter celebration is often associated with Jewish Passover as well as pagan imagery and deities. Is the modern Easter feast a purely Christian one or is there legitimacy in viewing Easter as a product of religious syncretism?