Leo Tolstoy is remembered as both a towering pinnacle of Russian literature and a fascinating example of Christian anarchism, a mystical version of which the aristocratic author pioneered in the last quarter century of his life.[...]
Organized religion got you down? Feel like giving up on it altogether? You are not by any stretch alone. Religiosity is in grave decline in Europe and the U.S., prompting panic in some quarters and satisfaction in others (that young adults, for example, agree more with Karl Marx than with the Bible).[...]
Image by Jules Jacot Guillarmod, via Wikimedia Commons
Last week, we brought you a rather strange story about the rivalry between poet William Butler Yeats and magician Aleister Crowley. Theirs was a feud over the practices of occult society the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn; but it was also—at least for Crowley—over poetry.
Aleister Crowley—English magician and founder of the religion of Thelema—has been admired as a powerful theorist and practitioner of what he called “Magick,” and reviled as a spoiled, abusive buffoon.[...]
Images via Wikimedia Commons
In a 1997 essay in Natural History, Stephen Jay Gould (in)famously called the realms of religion and science “Nonoverlapping Magisteria”—a phrase that acknowledges both endeavors as equally powerful and important to human life.
Jazz has inspired a great many things, and a great many things have inspired jazz, and more than a few of the music’s masters have found their aspiration by looking — or listening — to the divine. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they subscribe to traditional religion.[...]
If you’ve dipped even a toe into the yoga world lately, you’ve perhaps noticed controversies raging from East to West about the Hindu practice of meditative postures (āsanas).[...]
Orthodox thinkers have not often found the answers to suffering in the Book of Job particularly comforting—an early scribe likely going so far as interpolating the speech of one of Job’s more Pollyannaish friends.[...]
Just when you thought you’ve seen it all, we give you this: Aryeh and Gil Gat, two once fairly-secular brothers-turned-ultra orthodox rabbis, playing Pink Floyd’s “Wish You Were Here” on the streets of Jerusalem.[...]
Krishna teaching Arjuna, from the Bhagavata Gita, by Arnab Dutta, via Wikimedia Commons
Opening with 19th century British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli’s quote, “The East is a career,” Edward Said’s Orientalism traced the lineage of “the Orient” as “almost a European invention.