Questions in the Religion & Philosophy category.
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December 11, 2016

Meditation Retreats near NYC?

I am searching for single day or weekend vipassana meditation retreats near NYC and was curious if the AskMefi community had any recommendations. [more inside]
posted by hobodeluxe at 8:11 AM - 3 answers

December 10, 2016

A contemporary "version" of Frazer's The Golden Bough?

I am interested in myth, religion, magic and authority, and was just watching Apocalypse Now which reminded me of that Frazer book 'The Golden Bough' (1890). The Golden Bough, it seems, is read these days mostly for understanding the "history of anthropology" rather than as anthropology per se. Is there an equivalent contemporary anthropological study of the same subjects that someone could recommend? i.e. If I am interested in the current "accepted" state of anthropology of magic and religion. [more inside]
posted by mary8nne at 2:45 AM - 5 answers

December 6, 2016

Books about Celtic Christianity or Spirituality

I am interested in learning about the history of Celtic Christianity or spirituality. I am having trouble finding books that are about the history of this period, rather than being "self help" type books about lessons from that period that can be applied to today. I want a good, solid history, preferably one that is available on Kindle. Can you suggest something? [more inside]
posted by OrangeDisk at 7:15 PM - 8 answers

December 4, 2016

Psychedelics and the self

I have a hypothetical question about the use of psychadelics and the sense of self: is it possible to take a psychedelic drug and perceive how others "see you"? [more inside]
posted by Dressed to Kill at 4:19 PM - 10 answers

November 27, 2016

Thinking on creative work in times of real political trouble

Given the election of Donald Trump, I'm conflicted about spending my free time on creative work. I am committed to taking small, regular actions like calling my congressman, or maybe doing a phone bank or two, but I'm inclined to spend my free 40-60 minutes each weekday (I'm a parent with a full-time job) on things I find interesting and not at all related to politics. However, given how dire our situation seems, this seems irresponsible. This issue does seem like the kind of thing that people would have written about at length in the past. Can you point me at that work? [more inside]
posted by ignignokt at 5:45 PM - 20 answers

November 26, 2016

Christian Theology Tumblr Post?

There's a viral Tumblr post that is going around about Christian theology and the Old Testament. I'm curious as to whether it is "valid" Christian theology. Text after the cut. [more inside]
posted by WCityMike at 9:06 PM - 18 answers

November 22, 2016

Premodern University Teaching, also convents etc. - History of Pedagogy

How did premodern universities, schools, convents, etc., work? This question is a bit confused as in formulating it I realized I was confused, but I will do my best! It came up when I was reading a fantasy novel and the novel was clearly "the author went to 20th century American college and just retrojected that on his imaginary medieval world." But what was it really like? I'm looking for the history of teaching, I think, and not just in universities. [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 12:02 AM - 11 answers

November 18, 2016

Rider Waite Tarot Deck Explained

I'm looking for either a book, or online resource that will let me learn about the Rider-Waite tarot deck. This is strictly an academic interest, and I'm more interested in the meanings behind the cards, and the way they can be interpreted together, than I am in trying to divine my future. Do any mefites with occult interest have suggestions?
posted by dortmunder at 4:01 AM - 9 answers

November 16, 2016

Updating the making lemons into lemon-aid adage

The phrase, "if you've got lemons, make lemon-aid" has become my internal mantra, but its beyond cliche to use in real life. Certainly there are more creative and other ways to deliver this same message... please help me find a few?
posted by Unsomnambulist at 10:01 PM - 20 answers

November 9, 2016

Story of a Crying Woman

Hi there, there's this story I'm looking for the source of. It describes a woman who when her husband leaves in the morning cries all day until he comes back home. The analysis of the story is that she is afraid of the freedom of being alone all day and being able to do what she wants. The story's a device for psychology I think possibly Freud. Cheers!
posted by CyborgHag at 5:38 PM - 3 answers

November 6, 2016

I guess it's just me and you, God....

What do people do during Christian 'quiet time'? [more inside]
posted by Crookshanks_Meow at 8:15 PM - 14 answers

Where can I buy Forward Day by Day?

I need to buy a copy of the new edition of Forward Day by Day from Forward Movement (for November 2016 to January 2017). My church ran out of copies, and there's a man in the congregation who really needs one. I've searched and can't find a place to buy it online, but there must be somewhere I can get my hands on it.
posted by OrangeDisk at 6:47 PM - 6 answers

October 9, 2016

Does anyone know the inscriptions on the doors of the Milan Cathedral?

I've read online that over the triple doorways of Milan Cathedral are three inscriptions spanning the arches. Above one is carved a wreath of roses, with the words, “All that pleases is but for a moment.” Over the second is a cross, with the words, “All that troubles is but for a moment.” Underneath the great central entrance to the main aisle is inscribed: “That only is important which is eternal.” I presume the inscriptions are in latin or something. Can someone confirm, and provide the exact wording in latin? [more inside]
posted by hellomina at 6:58 PM - 7 answers

October 5, 2016

How do you navigate interfaith practices as a couple?

How do happily married interfaith couples (or those with one religious and one non-religious partner) make it work? What do your daily routines look like? And how do you maintain intimacy and avoid conflict around differing religious practices and beliefs? Looking for stories, anecdotes, books, articles, or other information about how interfaith couples navigate difference. [more inside]
posted by carrioncomfort at 12:19 PM - 9 answers

September 29, 2016

Readings about the foregiveness

What books, essays, novels, and poems about forgiveness can you recommend? I'm trying to wrap my head around how it works, what it requires, and what it feels like. When is it appropriate and when is their virtue to holding on to anger? How does it relate to reconciliation? I realize there is lots of material on the subject from a Christian perspective, and that's okay so long as it is somewhat accessible for the skeptic or non-believer.
posted by Alluring Mouthbreather at 9:12 AM - 24 answers

Best Place to Purchase an Astrological Natal Chart

My girlfriend enjoys horoscopes, and for her birthday I'd like to purchase her a full interpretation of her natal chart, and then have the chart itself converted into an art piece. I've already found an artist to do the art part, but I have no idea how to identify an astrologer. [more inside]
posted by philotes at 6:11 AM - 14 answers

September 18, 2016

How did lucid dreaming suddenly manifest in my life?

For the past couple nights I have been aware of dreams in which I was sitting up, yet knew I was asleep and my first thought was "don't wake the cat" who sleeps curled up with me. Are these really lucid dreams - and if so, how shall I foster and welcome them? [more inside]
posted by jet_silver at 8:26 PM - 7 answers

September 12, 2016

Did Camus say this?

I have a Japanese source that contains a quote attributed to Albert Camus. The Japanese reads: 対話のないところには生命はない。 I translate this to, "Where there is no dialogue, there is no life." I've been trying to locate the English translation of the same quote, but none of the variations I've tried turn up anything close. Some Japanese blogs show the quote, extended to add "ところが今日、世界の大部分のところで 対話は論争に置き換えられている。" ("But today, in most of the world, dialogue has been replaced by dispute.") None of these blogs show an original source. Where did Camus say/write this? Or, maybe it's misattributed to him?
posted by mariokrat at 4:33 AM - 5 answers

September 8, 2016

Let Us Now Praise Famous Shadows

I just read In Praise of Shadows by Jun'ichirō Tanizaki. I loved it; the lament for the past combined with no desire to relinquish the future, the insight into Japanese architecture, etc. Do you have any suggestions of books like this one? I'm interested in directly similar books, but also books that have the same feel. The books don't need to be about Japanese subjects. I do not want to read academic books that are written in a style that's designed to make the author sound smart. [more inside]
posted by gregr at 1:39 PM - 5 answers

Ethical theory 101

Um....anonymous because I teach and I guess I'm supposed to know this. Can someone explain why it's not okay to use one ethical theory for some situations but a different one for other situations? Why are ethicists always trying to defend their particular line of reasoning and never admit that certain aspects are better dealt with by another kind of theory? [more inside]
posted by anonymous at 8:28 AM - 17 answers

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