Questions in the Religion & Philosophy category.
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February 25

Pronunciation of Moriah

Up until five minutes ago, I've always pronounced the word/name Moriah the same way you would say Mariah Carey's name. But Baby Name Voyager says the correct pronunciation is mo-RAY-uh. Am I in the wrong here? (Biblical experts, or just name experts, help me out!)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:10 PM - 14 answers

February 20

a quick one

In a sentence (or less), when it's late at night, you can't fall asleep, and your thoughts begin to spiral out of control, how do you comfort yourself?
posted by t(h)om(as) at 3:58 AM - 88 answers

February 18

Demographic Changes in the Eastern Orthodox Church in the USA?

When I was growing up, in the seventies and eighties, Eastern Orthodoxy was pretty much an ethno-faith. That is, to be Orthodox was to be Greek, or Ukrainian or Russian or any of the historically orthodox nationalities who had immigrated to this country, along with a few outsiders who had married into the faith. Nowadays, however, things have changed . . . [more inside]
posted by jason's_planet at 9:51 AM - 13 answers

February 17

What do we know about ancient religious faith?

Having studied Christian theology in college, I am aware that much of what we have reflecting ancient Greek and Roman religious belief survives because Christian apologists were refuting source materials drawn from that culture. But what else do we actually know? [more inside]
posted by jefficator at 10:50 AM - 18 answers

February 8

How do we tell his family that we are having a secular wedding?

My fiance and I are both atheists with strong antitheist views. We're getting married in November and want something that represents us. His family, however, is extremely religious (Baptist) and will have certain expectations of us; they don't easily take no for an answer. What is the best way to balance the two worlds? [more inside]
posted by DriftingLotus at 7:56 PM - 30 answers

February 7

Help me get started studying relationships.

I need to learn how to think about relationships that are "more than just" friendships. This needs to happen before I start to consider whether I want that kind of relationship, so I'm not looking for any kind of practical guide. Perhaps that means I need to read philosophy texts, in which case I'd like some recommendations for that; or maybe you have a better idea of what I need. [more inside]
posted by LogicalDash at 3:52 AM - 10 answers

January 27

Seeking comfort and grace, not depression and sorrow

The last of my grandparents just passed away (it was peaceful and expected) but I'm struggling to hold myself together. I think my grieving is normal since it just happened but I'd love to hear advice and techniques to think of his life and death in positive, comforting ways. [more inside]
posted by wannabecounselor at 1:16 PM - 10 answers

January 23

Religious figures thoughts on life as a process

Can you give me quotes from historical or mythical religious figures on the thought that life is process, that one is never "finished"?
posted by falsedmitri at 7:38 PM - 7 answers

January 14

Best way to start speaking about a new idea

What is the best way to start lecturing on a new self-help / philosophy type concept? Is it better to organize your own lectures first, or to join various existing conferences? If the former, does anyone have any tips or pointers to books on how best to organize and effectively publicize these lectures, and stories about how others have done it? If the latter, does anyone have any tips on how to successfully apply for a speaking slot at a conference? No blog-related tips, please.
posted by shivohum at 11:40 AM - 2 answers

December 23, 2014

Midnight Mass in Warwick, RI?

We are looking for a "midnight" mass Christmas service in Providence or Warwick, RI. We are not religious and don't live there, but nonetheless have very specific desires (after the break). [more inside]
posted by obliquicity at 10:38 AM - 9 answers

December 19, 2014

Scrabble Peeve Filter

Is there some kind of discernible justification for the allowance of the word "em" (meaning, the letter "m") in Scrabble, and not, say for example, the "word" "ee" (meaning, the letter "e")? I mean, who the heck decided "em" was a word, and if it is, why aren't all letters "words"?! [more inside]
posted by latkes at 7:32 PM - 20 answers

Help me find a Jewish fable about bluffing in a negotiation

When I was young, I remember reading a Jewish fable, or maybe even many different versions of a fable, about a wily trickster who outwits someone or something who is holding him or his community hostage. It might have been Herschel or Hillel, but whoever it is, he succeeds by bluffing that he is going to do something awful if he doesn't get what he wants. [more inside]
posted by boots at 5:57 AM - 4 answers

December 14, 2014

Ethics of downloading ebooks

Please help me decide how to ethically consume books now that I'm the owner of a brand shiny new Kindle. [more inside]
posted by Aizkolari at 8:19 PM - 28 answers

December 12, 2014

No Dogs Go To Heaven Under Any Circumstances

There are widespread reports that the Pope now claims that animals go to heaven, based on this article from the illustrious Daily Express newspaper, and in particular this line: “One day we will see our animals again in eternity of Christ’, Francis quoted Paul as saying. Is this a real quote attributed to Paul, or is the Express making shit up, or is Francis making shit up, or what is happening
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 12:20 PM - 18 answers

December 10, 2014

Of Questions Angelogical

Two-part question about books of angelology: one specific and one more general. [more inside]
posted by sleevener at 8:51 AM - 5 answers

December 3, 2014

Name That Logical Fallacy-Filter

Quick 'n dirty: is there a name (in either classical logic/reasoning OR a newly-coined term) for the belief that "if you hold a different opinion on a topic than I, it must be due to a deficiency in information/experience/intelligence on YOUR part" (in other words - "anyone sufficiently smart/experienced/informed, when presented with this issue, would inevitably draw the same conclusion as I"). E.g. "You're a [member of political party] NOW, but that's only because you haven't [something] yet!", or "Wow, you believe in [thing]... maybe you should DO SOME RESEARCH and see if you don't change your tune!"
posted by julthumbscrew at 11:13 AM - 16 answers

November 30, 2014

Who believes in god because the existence of god is ridiculous?

I'm paraphrasing, obviously, but I recently encountered the Thoughts of a Prominent Thinker who's belief in the existence of god is based, somewhat backwardsly, on the sheer ridiculousness? improbability? unlikelihood? of god's existence. I can't for the life of me track down the specific memory attached to this idea, and google only gives me a bunch of websites arguing about how to prove god does or does not exist. Help me out, friends!
posted by Grandysaur at 11:33 PM - 9 answers

November 28, 2014

I see trouble on the way

My mom has been attending a new church whose congregants regularly fret over what they call "The Black Moon." The talk amongst the folks there (though not--as far as I know--from the pulpit itself) is that the Bible predicts a stock market crash in October of next year. What in the holy hell are they talking about? And, on a scale of one to ten, exactly how bananas are these people? [more inside]
posted by DirtyOldTown at 9:40 AM - 21 answers

November 26, 2014

The Case For Or Against "The Case For God"

Two points in the early chapters of Karen Armstrong's "The Case for God" are really bothering me, almost to the point of putting the book down in frustration; can the hivemind put my doubts to rest by answering two questions about religious history: First about the validity of Armstrong's "logos/mythos" distinction, and second, about the current thinking on the documentary hypothesis? [more inside]
posted by mittens at 9:33 AM - 4 answers

November 23, 2014

Korean and Japanese Philosophy

I love reading Chinese philosophy, and I'm looking to get into some Korean philosophy, just to see what their take is. But I'm having trouble figuring out where to start. I'd like to read uniquely Korean things, or takes on confucianism and taoism, from any time period, or just interesting thoughts posed by Korean philosophers. I'd also like to read some Japanese texts in the same vein, and once again don't really know where to start. I'm looking for the best English translations. Any suggestions?
posted by Gargantuantoe at 2:27 PM - 8 answers

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