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Tag overview for: 'religion'

Entries on this site with 'religion'

  • wild & dao
    In 'The Practice of the Wild' (1990) Gary Snyder observes how: Wild is largely defined in our dictionaries by what - from a human standpoint - it is not. It cannot be seen
  • be passers-by
    The massive gate to the Mughal ghost-palace of Fatehpur Sikri , the Buland Darwaza , contains a curious Christian inscription - or rather, an Islamic inscription quoting J
  • the mind made a swing
    Between the poles of the conscious and the unconscious, there has the mind made a swing: Thereon hang all beings and all worlds, and that swing never ceases its sway. Mill
  • study of mountains
    The dozen or so versions of 'Study of Mountains' represent Russian painter Nicholas Roerich 's mystical visions of the Himalaya peaks at their starkest, barest essence: pl
  • varanasi dawn
    Varanasi, formerly Benares, also Kashi, the Hindu holy city has since time immemorial worshipped the river goddess Ganga from its ghats . Not surprisingly, the most auspic
  • indian infinity
    India is all about infinity - an infinity of gods and myths, beliefs and languages, races and cultures; in everything, and everywhere one looks, there is this dizzying end
  • timbuktu renaissance
    A hopeful companion to Abderrahmane Sissako's ' Timbuktu ' (2014), currently showing at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, is a small exhibition at Brussels' Bozar
  • scotland: iona
    The Isle of Iona lies just off the coast of Mull, in Scotland's Inner Hebrides. Iona Abbey, founded by St Columba in the 6th century, is one of the oldest centers of Chris
  • xi'an stelae
    The most impressive museum in Xi'an, China's ancient capital of Chang'an, houses the Forest of Stelae, a vast collection of ancient literature and calligraphy, all engrave
  • dunhuang desert & caves
    From Sichuan further northwest to China's traditional desert frontier, where the Silk Road oasis of Dunhuang lies on the edge of the Taklamakan Desert - quite literally, w
  • macau deities
    Hidden behind its modern facade of dazzling casinos, Macau's old town offers a fascinating blend of Chinese and Portuguese culture and religion, symbolized by the ruins of
  • the green face
    There was an all-pervading, matt half-light; the poplar outside the window, the distant bushes and the towers of Amsterdam were faintly illuminated, as if by dim floodligh
  • iffr: les chevaux de dieu
    A highlight at the IFFR, Nabil Ayouch's ' Les Chevaux de Dieu ' ('Horses of God') is a chilling investigation of the motives of Muslim extremist suicide bombers. Based on
  • catherine's room
    While video art is often associated with badly lit conceptualism shown in rooms with nowhere to sit, Bill Viola has long proven that there is indeed a fascinating space to
  • dekalog 1: i am ready
    Over 20 years old, Krzysztof Kieslowski 's famous modern interpretation of the Ten Commandments in ' The Decalogue ' ('Dekalog', 1989) has lost none of its dramatic power
  • ireland: skellig michael
    Off the coast of south-western Ireland, at the edge of the known world (in the Middle Ages at least), lie two rocks jutting out of the Atlantic, known as the Skellig Islan
  • ecclesiastical plumbing
    The current issue of Cabinet Magazine , devoted to infrastructure , contains a fascinating article on an architectural detail of Catholic churches called the piscina . The
  • miyajima torii
    Located on Miyajima in the Seto Inland Sea, Itsukushima Shrine with its famous gate (torii) that appears to be floating on the water is one of the canonical Three Views of
  • mother of god pelagonitissa
    The fifteenth century icon of 'Mother of God Pelagonitissa' is one of the highlights of the exhibition 'Unimagined Beauty' in the Catharijneconvent in Utrecht, which shows
  • temple gardens
    Japanese gardens, where the moss is hand-swept and the grass hand-shaven, are living works of art, striving to balance meticulous craftmanship with the unpredictable prope
  • god's dissatisfaction
    God breathed in deeply, looked at the mist around Him and murmured in the hushed tones of someone who has just made an unexpected and curious discovery, It would never hav
  • when the new season makes its way
    If after seeing ' Hadewijch ' ( reviewed before ), you're curious about the 13th century poet, mystic and beguine ('begijn') from Brabant, here's a sample of her work. Had
  • iffr: hadewijch
    Modern mysticism at the International Film Festival Rotterdam , with Bruno Dumont 's new film ' Hadewijch ', a thoughtful meditation as austere and introspective as its tr
  • franny and zooey
    Franny: What happened was, I got the idea in my head - and I could not get it out - that college was just one more dopey , inane place in the world dedicated to piling up
  • the fisher king
    Did you ever hear the story of the Fisher King? It begins with the king as a boy having to sleep alone in the forest to prove his courage so he can become king. While he's
  • the religious experience of philip k. dick
    In 1974, science fiction writer Philip K. Dick experienced a series of mystical visions. They would greatly influence his writing, most explicitly in ' Valis ', a philosop
  • inanna's journey to hell
    'Inanna's Journey to Hell', composed in Mesopotamia (what is now Iraq) in the third millennium BC, ranks among the oldest surviving stories of mankind. Inanna , the Lady o
  • al-mahdi
    "What inferno, what terrible plague or huge massacre or catastrophic earthquake is needed to make those people stop and look around them, to contemplate in silence what te
  • coptic egypt
    At more than 10% of the population, the Copts are a sizable minority in Egypt, and in most towns church towers can be seen side by side with the mosque minarets. The Copti
  • the simorgh
    It's a bit weird to use a spoiler warning when reviewing a book that's over 800 years old. But ' The Conference of the Birds ' ('Mantiq at-Ta'ir'), by twelfth century Sufi
  • morocco: gnawa
    Back to Morocco, where the traditional music of gnawa , or gnaoua, provides a fascinating representation of the different ethnic and religious groups that have shaped it.
  • la convivencia
    The period known as La Convivencia refers to the peaceful coexistence of Muslems, Jews and Christians during the Moorish reign of al-Andalus (Spain), between 711 and 1492.
  • tales of the alhambra
    The swan song of the Moors in Europe, the 14th century Alhambra palace remains suffused with exotic mystery. Located on a hilltop overlooking Granada , its fortified walls
  • geertgen tot sint jans
    The 15th century in Dutch painting was that transition period when perspective was not quite understood yet (or maybe just not deemed relevant), painting styles were still
  • christvertising
    Is your brand in God's good books? Some hilarious satire for Easter Sunday: Christvertising.com , which had many in the American blogosphere wondering whether it was real
  • deer park
    Just four lines long, the ancient Chinese poem 'Deer Park', by Buddhist poet Wang Wei , has inspired poets and translators through the ages. Eliot Weinberger 's '19 Ways o
  • the god necessity
    As we look back through the religious conceptions of human nature - and indeed we need not look so very far back because the same doctrine can be found in Freud - it becom
  • things
    If you thought materialist escapism and spiritual dabbling were modern phenomena, check out this very amusing short story by D.H. Lawrence , called 'Things', written in 19
  • singing in tongues
    It'll be hard to put into words the experience of seeing Lisa Gerrard live, last night at the Rotterdamse Schouwburg (not your ideal concert venue, but with Nighttown clos
  • the consolation of philosophy
    Since today is the memorial day of Saint Severinus , better known as Boethius , it seems fitting to take a look at his masterpiece ' The Consolation of Philosophy ' ('De C
  • god is in the details
    The absolute highlight of the Persia exhibition in the Hermitage Amsterdam was its collection of medieval manuscripts and miniatures . Unfortunately, due to their fragilit
  • mexico: tenochtitlan
    Mexico City, formerly known as Tenochtitlan , the capital of the Aztecs , was built on an island in Lake Texcoco and one of the world's largest cities by the time it was d
  • mexico: teotihuacán
    So, to finally delve into Mexico, with the awe-inspiring archeological site of Teotihuacán , just north-east of Mexico City. Built by unknown predecessors of the Aztecs (w
  • chinese art and greek art
    Following up on my earlier post on Pamuk's 'The Black Book', it appears the story about the competition between the two painters was inspired by a poem by Jalal ad-Din Muh
  • the black book
    This post is not about Paul Verhoeven's film but about Orhan Pamuk 's novel ' The Black Book ' ('Kara Kitap'). As a caleidoscopic, metaphysical detective novel, 'The Black
  • the golem
    Gustav Meyrink 's 1915 novel 'The Golem' is a classic of fantastic and expressionist fiction. Imagine Kafka (a friend of Meyrink's) writing ' Frankenstein ' (published onl
  • time & perfection
    There was an artist in the city of Kouroo who was disposed to strive after perfection. One day it came into his mind to make a staff. Having considered that in an imperfec
  • eternal youth
    According to the mythology of the Trobriand Islands , human beings used to be immortal, by simply shedding their skin when it grew old. At some point, however, they lost t
  • iffr: scream of the ants
    The Rotterdam Film Festival is always a good place for Iranian cinema. Tehran was one of this year's hot spots , and there was also master-in-exile Mohsen Makhmalbaf 's ne
  • the mahabharata
    The Indian Mahabharata has been called the longest epic in the world. Spanning over 74.000 Sanskrit verses (about ten times the length of the Iliad and Odyssey combined!),
  • mary
    Abel Ferrara 's latest film ' Mary ' is a thought-provoking investigation of religious redemption in a cynical, intolerant world. Heavy on theological ideas, the story cen
  • de zee die denkt
    ' De Zee Die Denkt ' ('The Sea That Thinks') is a weird, thoughtprovoking film about itself and about a script writer struggling with the question of what the 'I', the sel
  • zen logic
    Without claiming to understand much of Zen (if that's even the point), here's a koan that seems to sum up its spirit nicely: A master was asked the question, "What is the
  • a secret veiled by a secret
    It's the simplest possible system. Consider only the outer circle. To code something, you replace each letter of your original message with the letter that precedes it: fo
  • the chance of humming
    A man standing on two logs in a river might do all right floating with the current while humming in the now. Though if one log is tied to a camel, who is also heading sout
  • time, pt. 2
    What time is for the nonreligious man of modern society would be more difficult to put into a few words. We do not intend to discuss the modern philosophies of time nor th
  • jihad?
    To Westerners [the word jihad ] conjures scenes of screaming fanatics being egged into war by promises that they will be instantly transported to heaven if they are slain.
  • big ideas in perspective
    Reading Bertrand Russell's History of Western Philosophy puts some of human kind's biggest ideas in perspective for you: Big idea #1: Their [Leucippus and Democritus, 5th

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