Warning: Irrationality

BUT RELIGIOUS FUNDAMENTALISTS AREN’T THE ONLY PROBLEM By Alan Rutkowski   AN UNAPPRECIATED but dangerous consequence of the Trump era is widespread liberal/secular oversimplification of the emerging danger. In their attacks on religion, for example, the so-called New Atheists — Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Christopher Hitchens (RIP), and Sam Harris — have fostered the notion that […]

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Their Idolatry and Mine

An India Travelogue, Part 5 by Lawrence Bush Click for Parts 1, 2, 3 and 4. ONE REASON I was ill-prepared for this trip to India is that my work life with Jewish Currents never leaves me much time for extra-curricular anything. I knew months ago that I would be coming here, as my wife was scheduled to teach for a […]

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The Uncivil Servant: The Fantasy of “Fantasyland”

IS AMERICA EXCEPTIONALLY ECCENTRIC? by Mitchell Abidor Discussed in this essay: Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire, by Kurt Andersen. Random House, 2017, 462 pages.   THE FANTASYLAND that is the subject of Kurt Andersen’s Fantasyland is, of course, America. And not just today’s alternative-fact America and its truth-challenged president, but America since its foundation. As Andersen writes: […]

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The Uncivil Servant: Protestantism at 500

by Mitchell Abidor Discussed in the essay: Martin Luther: Renegade and Prophet, by Lyndal Roper. Random House, 2017, 540 pages.   WHEN ON NOVEMBER 7 we observe the centennial of the Bolshevik Revolution, which died a slow, ugly death after a life of barely seventy-five years, we should not forget the far greater revolution celebrating its 500th […]

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July 28: Margot Adler’s Airwaves

Radio journalist and Wiccan priestess Margot Adler died at 66 on this date in 2014. A graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism, Adler took to the airwaves first on Pacifica in Berkeley and in New York, where on WBAI she reported on social movements and created two talk shows, Hour of the Wolf and […]

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Bridging the Jewish Secular-Religious Divide

by Lawrence Bush Discussed in this essay: Putting God Second: How to Save Religion from Itself, by Rabbi Donniel Hartman. Beacon Press, 2016, 180 pages. AS THE EDITOR of Jewish Currents, which tags itself on the cover as a “secular, progressive voice,” I am occasionally invited to synagogues to speak about secular Jewish identity. I […]

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The Square of Tolerance

CROSSING NARROW BRIDGES AS A TRAVELER IN SOFIA, BULGARIA by Dan Grossman from the Spring 2016 issue of Jewish Currents ALL ACROSS THE BALKANS, as all across Europe, religious tensions won’t stay in the past. In Mostar (southern Bosnia and Herzegovina), a bridge divides the Bosniak Muslims from the Catholic Croats, with the church towers […]

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December 25: The Unconquered Sun

The Roman Emperor Aurelian established a feast of the birth of Sol Invictus (the Unconquered Sun), on this date in 274 CE. The move elevated the Sun God to a higher status among the divinities of Rome (which, of course, elevated the Sun God’s priesthood as well). Sol Invictus would be a popular god, considered […]

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