Christmas, more than any other holiday in the Christian calendar, seems to spark the poetic impulse -- an impulse that began, as the Episcopal priest, professor, and poet Chad Walsh remarked some years ago, with the heavenly host and their proclamation: "Glory to God in the highest, And on earth, peace, good will to men."
A new report says this year Americans gave record amounts of private charitable donations. Another report says Americans donated nearly $3 billion to post-hurricane relief efforts. Yet nearly four months after Hurricane Katrina, the magnitude of the destruction is still difficult to comprehend. In the midst of it, many people here say the themes of Christmas are echoing in new and poignant ways.
As the U.S. Senate prepared for hearings on President George W. Bush’s nomination of Judge Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court, the court heard arguments on a major religious freedom case. At issue is whether the União do Vegetal Church should be able to import a hallucinogenic tea it uses for worship, or whether the government should be able to prevent that as a danger to public health. More
In Israel, there is a new flap about what's kosher -- in this case, whether hummus, the popular chickpea spread, conforms to Jewish law as set forth in the Torah.
Transcendental Meditation was widely popular 40 years ago: a technique for relaxation and awareness using certain sounds and ways of breathing, 20 minutes, twice a day. Now, it is flourishing in Fairfield, Iowa, the home of what is now the Maharishi University of Management. More
There is an old but persistent stereotype that some religious believers are so strict and stern they have no time or taste for laughter. Brad Stine is a successful performer who thinks evangelical Christianity and standup comedy can go together, and that humor can help spread faith. More