The totality of pressures and responses is pushing religious people into controversial forms. As religion takes on new forms, balances between individual and community are disrupted and reconfigured. Religions often lose the capacity to recall their ultimate purpose or to lead their adherents towards it. This is why we call this complex situation “the crisis of the holy.” This crisis is a confluence of threats, challenges, and opportunities for all religions. The present volume explores the contours of pressures, changes, and transformations, and reflects on how all our religions are changing under the common pressures of recent decades. By identifying commonalities across religions as they respond to these pressures, it suggests how religious traditions might cope with these changes and how they might join forces in doing so.
Chapters examine the nature of religious leadership in each tradition in relation to the goals of the tradition. They then present a typology of leadership in each of the traditions. These provide the background to a review of both systemic and contemporary challenges to religious leadership, and allow us to consider points of connection and intersection between the different faith traditions. This leads us to a reflection on religious leadership for the future, including the role of interfaith engagement in the profile of the ideal future religious leader.
At the end of the conceptual pole of this project is the notion of hope. If memory informs our past, hope sets the horizons for our future. How does the healing of memory open new horizons for the future? And what is the notion of hope in each of our traditions, so that it might be receptive to opening up to a common vision of good for all?
Between memory and hope, the project seeks to offer a vision of healing and hope that can serve as a resource in contemporary interfaith relations.
A clear-sighted revelation, a deep penetration into the world of Scientology by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Looming Tower, the now-classic study of al-Qaeda’s 9/11 attack. Based on more than two hundred personal interviews with current and former Scientologists—both famous and less well known—and years of archival research, Lawrence Wright uses his extraordinary investigative ability to uncover for us the inner workings of the Church of Scientology.
At the book’s center, two men whom Wright brings vividly to life, showing how they have made Scientology what it is today: The darkly brilliant science-fiction writer L. Ron Hubbard, whose restless, expansive mind invented a new religion. And his successor, David Miscavige—tough and driven, with the unenviable task of preserving the church after the death of Hubbard.
We learn about Scientology’s complicated cosmology and special language. We see the ways in which the church pursues celebrities, such as Tom Cruise and John Travolta, and how such stars are used to advance the church’s goals. And we meet the young idealists who have joined the Sea Org, the church’s clergy, signing up with a billion-year contract.
In Going Clear, Wright examines what fundamentally makes a religion a religion, and whether Scientology is, in fact, deserving of this constitutional protection. Employing all his exceptional journalistic skills of observation, understanding, and shaping a story into a compelling narrative, Lawrence Wright has given us an evenhanded yet keenly incisive book that reveals the very essence of what makes Scientology the institution it is.
From the Hardcover edition.
While imprisoned in a Nazi concentration camp, Simon Wiesenthal was taken one day from his work detail to the bedside of a dying member of the SS. Haunted by the crimes in which he had participated, the soldier wanted to confess to--and obtain absolution from--a Jew. Faced with the choice between compassion and justice, silence and truth, Wiesenthal said nothing. But even years after the way had ended, he wondered: Had he done the right thing? What would you have done in his place?
In this important book, fifty-three distinguished men and women respond to Wiesenthal's questions. They are theologians, political leaders, writers, jurists, psychiatrists, human rights activists, Holocaust survivors, and victims of attempted genocides in Bosnia, Cambodia, China and Tibet. Their responses, as varied as their experiences of the world, remind us that Wiesenthal's questions are not limited to events of the past.
From Sam Harris, neuroscientist and author of numerous New York Times bestselling books, Waking Up is for the twenty percent of Americans who follow no religion but who suspect that important truths can be found in the experiences of such figures as Jesus, the Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history. Throughout this book, Harris argues that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow, and that how we pay attention to the present moment largely determines the quality of our lives.
Waking Up is part memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris—a scientist, philosopher, and famous skeptic—could write it.
In this enlightening book, Sam Harris argues that this truth about the human mind does not undermine morality or diminish the importance of social and political freedom, but it can and should change the way we think about some of the most important questions in life.
Providing an intimate window into a loving Muslim home, Qureshi shares how he developed a passion for Islam before discovering, almost against his will, evidence that Jesus rose from the dead and claimed to be God. Unable to deny the arguments but not wanting to deny his family, Qureshi struggled with an inner turmoil that will challenge Christians, Muslims, and all those who are interested in the world’s greatest religions.
Engaging and thought-provoking, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus tells a powerful story of the clash between Islam and Christianity in one man’s heart?and of the peace he eventually found in Jesus.
"I have seldom seen such genuine intellect combined with passion to match ... truly a 'must-read' book."—Ravi Zacharias
This concise guide is filled with illustrations, sidebars, and memorizable steps to help Christians stand their ground and defend their faith with reason and precision. In his engaging style, Dr. Craig offers four arguments for God’s existence, defends the historicity of Jesus’ personal claims and resurrection, addresses the problem of suffering, and shows why religious relativism doesn’t work. Along the way, he shares his story of following God’s call in his own life.
This one-stop, how-to-defend-your-faith manual will equip Christians to advance faith conversations deliberately, applying straightforward, cool-headed arguments. They will discover not just what they believe, but why they believe—and how being on guard with the truth has the power to change lives forever.
Sam Harris’s first book, The End of Faith, ignited a worldwide debate about the validity of religion. In the aftermath, Harris discovered that most people—from religious fundamentalists to nonbelieving scientists—agree on one point: science has nothing to say on the subject of human values. Indeed, our failure to address questions of meaning and morality through science has now become the most common justification for religious faith. It is also the primary reason why so many secularists and religious moderates feel obligated to "respect" the hardened superstitions of their more devout neighbors.
In this explosive new book, Sam Harris tears down the wall between scientific facts and human values, arguing that most people are simply mistaken about the relationship between morality and the rest of human knowledge. Harris urges us to think about morality in terms of human and animal well-being, viewing the experiences of conscious creatures as peaks and valleys on a "moral landscape." Because there are definite facts to be known about where we fall on this landscape, Harris foresees a time when science will no longer limit itself to merely describing what people do in the name of "morality"; in principle, science should be able to tell us what we ought to do to live the best lives possible.
Bringing a fresh perspective to age-old questions of right and wrong and good and evil, Harris demonstrates that we already know enough about the human brain and its relationship to events in the world to say that there are right and wrong answers to the most pressing questions of human life. Because such answers exist, moral relativism is simply false—and comes at increasing cost to humanity. And the intrusions of religion into the sphere of human values can be finally repelled: for just as there is no such thing as Christian physics or Muslim algebra, there can be no Christian or Muslim morality.
Using his expertise in philosophy and neuroscience, along with his experience on the front lines of our "culture wars," Harris delivers a game-changing book about the future of science and about the real basis of human cooperation.
The Inner Temple of Witchcraft is a thorough course of education, introspection, meditation, and the development of the magickal and psychic abilities that are the birthright of the witch. Four introductory chapters present the history, traditions, and principles of witchcraft, followed by thirteen lessons that start with basic meditation techniques and culminate in a self-initiation ceremony equivalent to the first-degree level of traditional coven-based witchcraft.
As you progress through this year-and-a-day course of study, you will explore a wide range of topics that support and inform the dedicated witch:Ancient and modern magickal philosophy Modern scientific theories supporting a new definition of reality "Instant" magick techniques for protection, healing, and serenity Energy work and anatomy, including chakras and auras Astral travel, dreams, and spirit guides Healing techniques for body, mind, and spirit
This book's non-dogmatic presentation encourages an eclectic, personal approach while providing a strong foundation for the practice of witchcraft and magick. Develop your psychic abilities and practice potent magickal techniques as you explore the source of every witch's power--the temple within.
Winner of the 2003 Coalition of Visionary Resources (COVR) Award for Best Magic Book
From as early as three years old, Juliana, Celeste and Kristina were treated as sexual beings by their 'guardians' in the infamous religious cult known as the Children of God. They were made to watch and mimic orgies, received love letters and sexual advances from men old enough to be their grandfather, and were forced into abusive relationships. They were denied access to formal schooling, had to wander the streets begging for money, and were mercilessly beaten for 'crimes' as unpredictable as reading an encyclopaedia.
Finally, unable to live with the guilt of what had happened to her children, their mother escaped with Kristina, cutting herself off from her remaining children in a bid to save at least one child. Desperate to save her sisters, Kristina eventually returned to the place of her torture to free Celeste. Years later, Juliana found the courage to escape, knowing that the child she was carrying would be subjected to the same fate if she did not.
Now the three sisters have finally come together to reveal in full and horrific detail their existence within the Children of God cult. Their stories reveal a community spread throughout the world and its legacy of anorexia, depression, drug abuse, suicide and even murder. Lives are ripped apart and painstakingly mended with a shared strength that finally enabled the sisters to free themselves from the shadows of their past.
Living Wicca takes a philosophical look at the questions, practices, and differences within Witchcraft. You'll learn how to create your own rituals and symbols, develop a book of shadows, and even become a high priest or priestess. Also covered in this Scott Cunningham classic are tools, magical names, initiation, the Mysteries, 120 Wiccan symbols, and the importance of secrecy in your practice.New edit New interior design
For the first time, religious self-identification is on the decline in American. Some analysts have cited as cause a post-9/11perception: that faith in general is a source of aggression, intolerance, and divisiveness—something bad for society. But how accurate is that view? With deep learning and sympathetic understanding, Karen Armstrong sets out to discover the truth about religion and violence in each of the world’s great traditions, taking us on an astonishing journey from prehistoric times to the present.
While many historians have looked at violence in connection with particular religious manifestations (jihad in Islam or Christianity’s Crusades), Armstrong looks at each faith—not only Christianity and Islam, but also Buddhism, Hinduism, Confucianism, Daoism, and Judaism—in its totality over time. As she describes, each arose in an agrarian society with plenty powerful landowners brutalizing peasants while also warring among themselves over land, then the only real source of wealth. In this world, religion was not the discrete and personal matter it would become for us but rather something that permeated all aspects of society. And so it was that agrarian aggression, and the warrior ethos it begot, became bound up with observances of the sacred.
In each tradition, however, a counterbalance to the warrior code also developed. Around sages, prophets, and mystics there grew up communities protesting the injustice and bloodshed endemic to agrarian society, the violence to which religion had become heir. And so by the time the great confessional faiths came of age, all understood themselves as ultimately devoted to peace, equality, and reconciliation, whatever the acts of violence perpetrated in their name.
Industrialization and modernity have ushered in an epoch of spectacular and unexampled violence, although, as Armstrong explains, relatively little of it can be ascribed directly to religion. Nevertheless, she shows us how and in what measure religions, in their relative maturity, came to absorb modern belligerence—and what hope there might be for peace among believers of different creeds in our time.
At a moment of rising geopolitical chaos, the imperative of mutual understanding between nations and faith communities has never been more urgent, the dangers of action based on misunderstanding never greater. Informed by Armstrong’s sweeping erudition and personal commitment to the promotion of compassion, Fields of Blood makes vividly clear that religion is not the problem.
Scriptures, he saw that Catholicism couldn't save. This is the emotional story
of a Jesuit priest who left the Catholic Church and found salvation through
faith in Jesus Christ alone. He became a hunted man, because he knew the
carefully guarded secrets of the Vatican.
In a difficult, uncertain time, it takes a person of great courage, such as the Dalai Lama, to give us hope. Regardless of the violence and cynicism we see on television and read about in the news, there is an argument to be made for basic human goodness. The number of people who spend their lives engaged in violence and dishonesty is tiny compared to the vast majority who would wish others only well. According to the Dalai Lama, our survival has depended and will continue to depend on our basic goodness. Ethics for the New Millennium presents a moral system based on universal rather than religious principles. Its ultimate goal is happiness for every individual, irrespective of religious beliefs. Though he himself a practicing Buddhist, the Dalai Lama's teachings and the moral compass that guides him can lead each and every one of us—Muslim, Christian, Jew, Buddhist, or atheist—to a happier, more fulfilling life.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
McCarthy and Lysaught have crafted a distinctively unified collection. Gathered for the Journeyrepresents a common project among Catholic scholars who are struggling with similar questions about living faithfully.
Frederick Christian Bauerschmidt
William T. Cavanaugh
David M. Cloutier
James M. Donohue
Jeanne Heffernan Schindler
Kelly S. Johnson
M. Therese Lysaught
William C. Mattison III
David M. McCarthy
Michael R. Miller
Julie Hanlon Rubio
Grimoire for the Green Witch offers a treasury of magical information- rituals for Esbats and Sabbats, correspondences, circle-casting techniques, sigils, symbols, recitations, spells, teas, oils, baths, and divinations. Every aspect of Craft practice is addressed, from the purely magical to the personally spiritual. It is a distillation of Green practice, with room for growth and new inspiration.
2004 COVR AWARD 1ST RUNNER-UP
While agreeing with the claim that to remember a wrongdoing is to struggle against it, Volf notes that there are too many ways to remember wrongly, perpetuating the evil committed rather than guarding against it. In this way, the just sword of memory often severs the very good it seeks to defend. He argues that remembering rightly has implications not only for the individual but also for the wrongdoer and for the larger community.
Volfs personal stories of persecution offer a compelling backdrop for his search for theological resources to make memories a wellspring of healing rather than a source of deepening pain and animosity. Controversial, thoughtful, and incisively reasoned, "The End of Memory" begins a conversation hard to ignore.
“David Batstone is a heroic character.” —Bono
In the revised and updated version of this harrowing yet deeply inspirational exposé, award-winning journalist David Batstone gives the most up-to-date information available on the $31 billion human trafficking epidemic. With profiles of twenty-first century abolitionists like Thailand’s Kru Nam and Peru’s Lucy Borja, Batstone tells readers what they can do to stop the modern slave trade. Like Kevin Bales’ Disposable People and Ending Slavery, or E. Benjamin Skinner’s A Crime So Monstrous, Batstone’s Not for Sale is an informative and necessary manifesto for universal freedom.
The first trait to seek in a spouse (Day 17)
When, if ever, lying is permitted (Days 71-73)
Why acting cheerfully is a requirement, not a choice (Day 39)
What children don't owe their parents (Day 128)
Whether Jews should donate their organs (Day 290)
An effective but expensive technique for curbing your anger (Day 156)
How to raise truthful children (Day 298)
What purchases are always forbidden (Day 3)
In addition, Telushkin raises issues with ethical implications that may surprise you, such as the need to tip those whom you don't see (Day 109), the right thing to do when you hear an ambulance siren (Day 1), and why wasting time is a sin (Day 15). Whether he is telling us what Jewish tradition has to say about insider trading or about the relationship between employers and employees, he provides fresh inspiration and clear guidance for every day of our lives.
From the Hardcover edition.
Humanity has had a long fascination with blood sacrifice. In fact, it has been by no means uncommon for a child to be born into this world only to be patiently and lovingly reared by religious maniacs, who believe that the best way to keep the sun on its course or to ensure a rich harvest is to lead him by tender hand into a field or to a mountaintop and bury, butcher, or burn him alive as offering to an invisible God. The notion that Jesus Christ died for our sins and that his death constitutes a successful propitiation of a “loving” God is a direct and undisguised inheritance of the superstitious bloodletting that has plagued bewildered people throughout history. . .
Can you be a committed Christian without having to condemn or convert people of other faiths? Is it possible to affirm other religious traditions without watering down your own?
In his most important book yet, widely acclaimed author and speaker Brian McLaren proposes a new faith alternative, one built on "benevolence and solidarity rather than rivalry and hostility." This way of being Christian is strong but doesn't strong-arm anyone, going beyond mere tolerance to vigorous hospitality toward, interest in, and collaboration with the other.
Blending history, narrative, and brilliant insight, McLaren shows readers step-by-step how to reclaim this strong-benevolent faith, challenging us to stop creating barriers in the name of God and learn how affirming other religions can strengthen our commitment to our own. And in doing so, he invites Christians to become more Christ-like than ever before.
More than a century ago, during the formative years of the American nation, Protestant churches carried powerful moral authority, giving voice to values such as mercy and compassion, while boldly standing against injustice and immorality. Gustav Niebuhr travels back to this defining period, to explore Abraham Lincoln's decision to spare the lives of 265 Sioux men sentenced to die by a military tribunal in Minnesota for warfare against white settlers—while allowing the hanging of 38 others, the largest single execution on American soil. Popular opinion favored death or expulsion. Only one state leader championed the cause of the Native Americans, Episcopal bishop, Henry Benjamin Whipple.
Though he'd never met an Indian until he was 37 years old, Whipple befriended them before the massacre and understood their plight at the hands of corrupt government officials and businessmen. After their trial, he pleaded with Lincoln to extend mercy and implement true justice. Bringing to life this little known event and this extraordinary man, Niebuhr pays tribute to the once amazing moral force of mainline Protestant churches and the practitioners who guarded America's conscience.
Lincoln's Bishop is illustrated with 16 pages of black-and-white photos.
Within the pages of this book you will find the secrets and techniques to become a Witch. These can be divided into three categories: philosophical disciplines, spiritual beliefs, and practical techniques. Each part gets a focus in this book.
In the first section, you will:
- Learn meditation and how it can be used for ritual
- Discover the secrets of visualization, telepathy, and personal power
- Use the self-analysis techniques to discover who you are and never walk in anyone's shadow
In the second section you can:
- Uncover the essence of the God and Goddess
- Discover the festivals of Witchcraft
- Learn how to make and use the tools of Witchcraft
- Understand how to do rituals, including the rite of self-initiation
And in the final section, you'll:
- Practice psychic protection, shapeshifting, and banishing
- Master astral projection
- Learn to interpret omens
This really just barely covers some of the information you will find revealed in these pages. Written in a style that is clear and concise, this book will add to your knowledge of Witchcraft. Whether you are new to the Craft or have been practicing for some time, Witchcraft: Theory and Practice will impart wisdom that will fascinate and entice. You will be using this book for many years to come.
He contends that the fundamental basis for this body of teaching comes from an anthropological perspective that recognizes both the inherent dignity and the social nature of the human person—thus do the church's teachings on political and economic matters chart a middle course between the two extremes of individualism and collectivism. The documents themselves tend to downplay any discontinuities with previous documents, but Curran's systematic analysis reveals the significant historical developments that have occurred over the course of more than a century. Although greatly appreciative of the many strengths of this teaching, Curran also points out the weaknesses and continuing tensions in Catholic social teaching today.
Intended for scholars and students of Catholic social ethics, as well as those involved in Catholic social ministry, this volume will also appeal to non-Catholic readers interested in an understanding and evaluation of Catholic social teaching.
At the core of Krakauer’s book are brothers Ron and Dan Lafferty, who insist they received a commandment from God to kill a blameless woman and her baby girl. Beginning with a meticulously researched account of this appalling double murder, Krakauer constructs a multi-layered, bone-chilling narrative of messianic delusion, polygamy, savage violence, and unyielding faith. Along the way he uncovers a shadowy offshoot of America’s fastest growing religion, and raises provocative questions about the nature of religious belief.
*100% of the author royalties goes toward Christian ministries focused on spreading the Gospel and providing for those in need*
“John and Greg realize what everyone should know—that middle-class Americans are among the richest people in world history. It's time for Christ-followers to understand that God has bigger purposes than increasing our standard of living—He wants us to increase our standard of giving." —Randy Alcorn, from the Foreword of God and Money
John Cortines and Gregory Baumer met as Harvard MBA candidates in a men's Bible study and stopped asking "How much should I give?" and started asking "How much do I need to keep?" With their top-notch education and rising careers, Cortines and Baumer were guaranteed comfort and security for the rest of their lives. However, when their plans for saving and spending collided with God's purposes for extravagant generosity, they were each compelled to make a life-changing decision that challenges the values held by mainstream America and many Christian commentators. Cortines and Baumer show not only how to radically give, but explain how to do so responsibly.
Dive into the story and get equipped with the practical tools to—• Easily set budgets for spending • Wisely steward your money • Prepare and save for your future—home ownership, retirement, higher education, etc... • Know what the Bible says about money, tithing, and faith • Discern when to give and when not to give
Featuring lessons from the Bible, modern day case studies, and practical ways to apply biblical principles no matter what situation you're in, God and Money provides an incredible look into what the Bible says about—• Tithing and Christian giving • Wealth and stewardship • Faith and generosity • Love of money • And so much more!
From the parables of the Rich Young Ruler to the Widow's Mite, the Bible shows us that how we manage our money is critical to our relationship with God. God and Money uses these parables and more to teach you to save, spend, and steward your money in a biblical way by planting God's purposes at the heart of your practices.
Discover the 7 Core Principles of Wealth and Giving
Authors Cortines and Baumer pack 2,350 verses on money into 7 practical principles that can be applied to your life and finances on a daily basis. From shopping for groceries to your first down payment on a home, apply these reliable guidelines with ease and clarity—• Everything we "own" actually belongs to God • Giving should be voluntary, generous, cheerful, and needs-based • Giving generously breaks down the power of money over us • And more!
Gain Tools to Manage Your Money Wisely
Packed with tables, charts, graphs, and a quiz, the applications in God and Money are backed with scripture, data, research, and clear illustrations to help you discover what it means to honor God with your wealth. God and Money will teach you—• How to set budgets for spending • How to wisely steward your money • How to save for your future—home ownership, retirement, higher education, etc... • What the Bible says about tithing • When to give and when not to give • If you are a Spender, Saver, or a Servant with The 3 S's Quiz
Download FREE Tools and Resources to Create Your Personalized Giving Plan! No matter what your budget or salary looks like, you have the opportunity to serve and honor God with your finances! Easily set up your own annual spending cap when you download the free spreadsheet included! Save hours of time doing dizzying calculations for your spending, saving, and giving budgets with downloadable and reproducible Finish Line spreadsheets and other additional resources available!
God and Money also includes Baumer and Cortines' "Generosity Covenants" to empower you to write your own, for you, your small group, or your family! Don't wait another day to live a life of generosity that honors God with your life and money!
What Others are Saying About God and Money
"This is one of the most thoughtful and well researched books on giving that I have had the pleasure of reading. The frameworks presented in the book can be used by people at all stages of experiencing the joy of generosity." —Waters Davis, President of National Christian Foundation Houston. "With uncommon transparency, John and Greg provide a Gospel-centered and practical perspective on wealth. Through a leveling critique of comfortable Christianity, they challenge us to wholeheartedly pursue the joy of generosity. Read this book and you will be inspired, convicted and thinking differently about using what God has given you for Kingdom impact." —Peter Greer, President & CEO of HOPE International and coauthor of Mission Drift
"In God and Money, Baumer and Cortines challenge Christian readers to consider afresh what generosity looks like in light of the Scripture's radical teaching and the day of affluence in which we live. Whether or not you agree with all their conclusions or personal practices, you will be challenged and inspired." —Robert L. Plummer, Ph.D., Professor of New Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
"I greatly enjoyed reading God and Money! God used the framework Greg and John described to challenge my perspective and practice of generosity. I realized in reading their book that my personal bias is more saver and spender than servant. What I truly desire to be is a fully surrendered servant of Jesus. This book gave me practical frameworks to move in that direction." —Todd Harper, President, Generous Giving
"The mission of Harvard Business School is "to educate leaders who make a difference in the world," and in John and Greg that mission has been fulfilled abundantly. It has been my privilege to be their teacher, their colleague and now their friend; and I wish them Godspeed as they take the transformative message found in God and Money out to their community and to the world beyond. I have learned to expect great things from them, and they have yet to disappoint." —Derek van Bever, Senior Lecturer in Business Administration; Director, Forum for Growth and Innovation, Harvard Business School
Preview God and Money Table of Contents
Part I: FoundationsChapter 1: Wealth and Giving in the Bible Chapter 2: Seven Core Principles for Biblical Wealth and Giving Chapter 3: Motivations for Giving Chapter 4: Trends and Movements in Generosity
Part II: FrameworksChapter 5: The "Three S's Framework:" Spender, Saver, or Servant? Chapter 6: Spending: Investing in the Present Chapter 7: Saving: Investing in the Future Chapter 8: Serving: Investing in Eternity Through Giving
Part III: ForwardChapter 9: Stewardship in Community Chapter 10: Our Conclusions
In a clear and concise manner, Todd Salzman investigates what it is that fundamentally divides these two ethical theories and then what has created such animosity and division not only among theologians but also within the Church herself.
-- proposes a possible basis for common ground and future dialogue.
-- is ideal for use by undergraduate and graduate students, as well as lay readers.
-- sheds new light on the debate for moral theologians.
Father Gary Thomas was working as a parish priest in California when he was asked by his bishop to travel to Rome for training in the rite of exorcism. Though initially surprised, and slightly reluctant, he accepted this call, and enrolled in a new exorcism course at a Vatican-affiliated university, which taught him, among other things, how to distinguish between a genuine possession and mental illness. Eventually he would go on to participate in more than eighty exorcisms as an apprentice to a veteran Italian exorcist. His experiences profoundly changed the way he viewed the spiritual world, and as he moved from rational skeptic to practicing exorcist he came to understand the battle between good and evil in a whole new light. Journalist Matt Baglio had full access to Father Gary over the course of his training, and much of what he learned defies explanation.
The Rite provides fascinating vignettes from the lives of exorcists and people possessed by demons, including firsthand accounts of exorcists at work casting out demons, culminating in Father Gary's own confrontations with the Devil. Baglio also traces the history of exorcism, revealing its rites and rituals, explaining what the Catholic Church really teaches about demonic possession, and delving into such related topics as the hierarchy of angels and demons, satanic cults, black masses, curses, and the various theories used by modern scientists and anthropologists who seek to quantify such phenomena.
Written with an investigative eye that will captivate both skeptics and believers alike, The Rite shows that the truth about demonic possession is not only stranger than fiction, but also far more chilling.
First published in 1993, this edition has been thoroughly updated throughout and contains expanded sections on theological foundations, the role of character, confidentiality, and the timely topic of clergy sexual abuse. Appendices describing various denominational ministerial codes of ethics are included.
With the stated purpose of restoring ethics to its central role in Judaism, Rabbi Joseph Telushkin offers hundreds of examples from the Torah, the Talmud, rabbinic commentaries, and contemporary stories to illustrate how ethical teachings can affect our daily behavior. The subjects dealt with are ones we all encounter. They include judging other people fairly; knowing when forgiveness is obligatory, optional, or forbidden; balancing humility and self-esteem; avoiding speech that shames others; restraining our impulses of envy, hatred, and revenge; valuing truth but knowing when lying is permitted; understanding why God is the ultimate basis of morality; and appreciating the great benefits of Torah study. Telushkin has arranged the book in the traditional style of Jewish codes, with topical chapters and numbered paragraphs. Statements of law are almost invariably followed by anecdotes illustrating how these principles have been, or can be, practiced in daily life. The book can be read straight through to provide a solid grounding in Jewish values, consulted as a reference when facing ethical dilemmas, or studied in a group.
Vast in scope, this volume distills more than three thousand years of Jewish laws and suggestions on how to improve one’s character and become more honest, decent, and just. It is a landmark work of scholarship that is sure to influence the lives of Jews for generations to come, rich with questions to ponder and discuss, but primarily a book to live by.
From the Hardcover edition.
In this volume acclaimed scholar-monk Bhikkhu Bodhi has collected and translated the Buddha’s teachings on conflict resolution, interpersonal and social problem-solving, and the forging of harmonious relationships. The selections, all drawn from the Pali Canon, the earliest record of the Buddha’s discourses, are organized into ten thematic chapters. The chapters deal with such topics as the quelling of anger, good friendship, intentional communities, the settlement of disputes, and the establishing of an equitable society. Each chapter begins with a concise and informative introduction by the translator that guides us toward a deeper understanding of the texts that follow.
In times of social conflict, intolerance, and war, the Buddha’s approach to creating and sustaining peace takes on a new and urgent significance. Even readers unacquainted with Buddhism will appreciate these ancient teachings, always clear, practical, undogmatic, and so contemporary in flavor. The Buddha’s Teachings on Social and Communal Harmony will prove to be essential reading for anyone seeking to bring peace into their communities and into the wider world.
In an era of fraud, corruption, and the relentless celebration of image over substance, the message of this perennial best-seller is more timely than ever. Following Christ in a Consumer Society offers a penetrating critique of the culture of consumerism, contrasted with the personalism of the Gospel. Addressing a soul-destroying culture in which ""having more"" has become the only measure of value, Kavanaugh reminds us of the values that truly make us human. Through the counter-cultural message of the Gospel, his book presents a diagnosis of our social ills while at the same time providing a guide back to wholeness, sanity, and spiritual health.
–Professor Ari L. Goldman, Columbia University, and author of The Search for God at Harvard
“Love your neighbor as yourself” is the best-known commandment in the Bible. Yet we rarely hear anyone talk about how to apply these words in daily life. In this landmark work, Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, one of the premier scholars and thinkers of our time, gives both Jews and non-Jews an extraordinary summation of what Jewish tradition teaches about putting these words into practice.
Writing with great clarity and simplicity as well as with deep wisdom, Telushkin covers topics such as love and kindness, hospitality, visiting the sick, comforting mourners, charity, relations between Jews and non-Jews, compassion for animals, tolerance, self-defense, and end-of-life issues. This second volume of the first major code of Jewish ethics written in the English language is breathtaking in its scope and will undoubtedly influence readers for generations to come. It offers hundreds of practical examples from the Torah, the Talmud, the Midrash, and both ancient and modern rabbinic commentaries–as well as contemporary anecdotes–all teaching us how to care for one another each and every day.
A Code of Jewish Ethics, Volume 2: Love Your Neighbor as Yourself is a consummate work of scholarship. Like its acclaimed predecessor, which received the National Jewish Book Award, it is rich with ideas to contemplate and discuss, while being primarily a book to live by. Nothing could be more important in these strife-torn times than learning how to love our neighbors as ourselves. The message of this book is as vital and timely now as it has been since time immemorial.
From the Hardcover edition.
Have you ever wondered what Jesus would say to Mohammed? Or Buddha? Or Oscar Wilde? Maybe you have a friend who practices another religion or admires a more contemporary figure. Drop in on a conversation between Jesus and some well-known individuals whose search for the meaning of life took them in many directions--and influenced millions. Through dialogue between Christ and Gautama Buddha, Zacharias reveals Jesus' warm, impassioned concern for all people and explores God's true nature.
From the Hardcover edition.