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Religion, Lately: Doing Halloween Biblically, Ghosts v. Religion,  and Cannabis for Shiva

Religion, Lately: Doing Halloween Biblically, Ghosts v. Religion, and Cannabis for Shiva

By Kenny Smith…This year’s Halloween’s top-ten Biblically themed costumes? Pharaoh, Naughty Nun, Priest with Enormous Erection (cleverly packaged as “Keeping Up The Faith”), and of course Zombie Nuns (said to be marked down 20%!). What do practicing witches actually think about Halloween? Some hate it. Some love it. In Mumbai, Wiccans used the holiday Samhain (also on October 31) as an occasion for casting protective spells for the benefit of women in India. And while many continue to lump Wiccans. Pagans, and Satanists together, Real Housewives of Beverley Hills’ Carlton Gebbia stakes out a religious identity not reducible to any of these exactly: “I’m Celtic, which is my ancestry. And I practice witchcraft. My grandmother was a Pagan… There’s no one defined answer.”

The Religious Theft of Sacred Culture?

The Religious Theft of Sacred Culture?

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By Kenny Smith…..
In the case of both Jediism and Dudeism, entirely new religious traditions have been created wholesale from the cloth of popular culture. In other cases, key elements are borrowed from popular culture and grafted onto pre-existing religious traditions, resulting in equally innovative and to some degree “new” versions of these traditions, which their critics typically regard as humorous or horrifying.

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.