Sightings

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July 4, 2013
The Fourth of July is a good day to remember the Rev. John Boyle, warrior turned healer, who left this world not long ago.   During WW II, John was a 19-year-old sergeant in the U.S. Army fighting in Germany. He wrote this remembrance, in a draft of a book on forgiveness we had been working on together:  
July 1, 2013
True to our title-metaphor “Sightings,” we regularly write about seeing, seeking, squinting, and finding evidences of religion in public life. The month of June provided many opportunities (some of them almost blinding!) to recognize religion’s role in a putatively secular and religion-blind society.
June 27, 2013
In a recent article in the New York Times, “Predator and Prey, a Delicate Dance,” John Vucetich, Michael Nelson, and Rolf Peterson describe a scenario that challenges the meanings we attach to the word, wilderness.
June 24, 2013
Notice the tenses in Wikipedia’s entry on “Exodus International” posted only a day or two after events necessitated a change from the word “is” to “was”. Quote: “Exodus International was a non-profit interdenominational ex-gay Christian organization that sought to help people who wished to limit their homosexual desires. . . Exodus International formerly asserted . . .
June 24, 2013
Notice the tenses in Wikipedia’s entry on “Exodus International” posted only a day or two after events necessitated a change from the word “is” to “was”. Quote: “Exodus International was a non-profit interdenominational ex-gay Christian organization that sought to help people who wished to limit their homosexual desires. . . Exodus International formerly asserted . . .
June 20, 2013
Frantic excavation of Afghanistan’s ancient Buddhist city of Mes Aynak continues as an international team of sixty-seven archeologists retrieve as many artifacts as possible before, at the end of the month, two Chinese mining companies begin open-pit mining in this copper-rich area (see June 13, 2013's Sightings).
June 17, 2013
Demography, “the science of vital and social statistics,” can help trend-spotters discern and explain many trends in American religion.
June 13, 2013
In Afghanistan, international teams of archaeologists are scrambling to finish excavating Mes Aynak, a massive Buddhist city covering 125 acres that is estimated to be over 2,000 years old. Two government-owned Chinese companies, the China Metallurgical Group Corporation and Jiangxi Copper, have won exclusive rights from the government of Afghanistan to mine at Mes Aynak for thirty years.
June 10, 2013
“Every living and healthy religion has a marked idiosyncrasy” wrote philosopher George Santayana, and its power comes from the “special and surprising message and the bias which that revelation gives to life.” He preferred to see religions interact positively, but he also knew the difficulties based on difference. A religion “offers another world to live in,” and “another world to live in. . .

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