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Greece’s Eastern Orthodox Fortresses of Mt. Athos

A closely guarded spiritual center of Eastern Orthodoxy, Mount Athos is the only place in Greece totally dedicated to prayer and worship of God. Known also as the “Holy Mountain,” it has enjoyed political self-rule since the time of the Byzantine Empire with the first constitution of Athos signed by Emperor John I Tzimiskes in […]

December 30th

Increase Your Holiday Spirit With These 3 Tips

This post is part of Important Media’s More Love, Less Stuff holiday event. We’re sharing ideas to redefine holiday traditions to be less about stuff and more about gratitude, compassion, and love. While it may be the season for holiday cheer, it’s also the season for traveling, buying gifts, attending holiday parties, dealing with difficult […]

December 18th

How Religious Inequality Can Harm Health and Environment

Religious inequality has been inflicted upon African Indigenous Religion (AIR) faith members in Kenya’s Sacred Kaya Forests. These communities still suffer today as a result of the early Christian missionaries’ doctrine of religious exclusivity. Because of religious discrimination, non-Christian members were appallingly ostracized and economically penalized. Also as a direct result, the sacred forest groves […]

October 16th

The San Francisco Diggers and the Garbage

The original Diggers first appeared during the 17th-century English Civil War, a time of great social and political instability. In 1649, Gerrard Winstanley, “moved by supernatural illuminations,” organized the Diggers. Winstanley and company also took some influence from Acts 4:32: “The group of believers was one in mind and heart. No one said that any […]

October 11th

Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove

In an essay that I’ve mentioned once or twice before, “Fourier! – Or, the Utopian Poetics,” Peter Lamborn Wilson situates Fourier, the utopian visionary, in the Taoist tradition, specifically, “the Taoist emphasis on spontaneity, work-as-play, wealth, health, longevity, sexual ‘alchemy,’ complex cuisine, and even sensual pleasure.” Here, he uses an important footnote: “Taoism is not […]

September 27th

History of the People Through Nature

In a previous post on Norman Cohn’s The Pursuit of the Millennium, I discussed the theme of pursuing a better future. I’d like to return to it to voice my concern with the book’s focus on leaders to define history. Should we let individuals tell our story, or the people? Cohn writes the history of millennial […]

September 12th

Global Warming – Part II: Mitigating the Damage

Mitigating the damage of global warming is a moral responsibility requiring global cooperation. Members of religious faiths are ideally poised to lead cooperative efforts because of our great respect for faithfully carrying out our moral obligations. Our future carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, as well as our future mitigating actions, will determine the degree to which humans […]

September 4th

The Possibilities and Dangers of Pursuing a Better Future

Norman Cohn’s The Pursuit of the Millennium provides a detailed look at millennial groups in the Middle Ages. He variously uses the terms eschatology, chiliasm, and heresy to describe the binding beliefs of each of these groups, mostly based on literal readings of the Book of Revelations. In general, they believed that following a period […]

August 12th