A lesson in expectations, disappointment, and living forward tradition from our Hamilton-obsessed columnist.
A young, gay Mormon’s testimony sparked a rift in her community — but, Erika Munson wonders, must we give in to the instinct to take sides? On lingering in the complex questions with a spirit of compassion that has room for our differences.
Be the first to try out our new On Being discovery tool for exploring hundreds of conversations in our archives! And, excellent writings on privilege, solitude, and productivity to accompany your listening.
Our Letter from Loring Park opens our application process for the inaugural On Being Gathering. And, articles on the complexities of family and love, giving up on the myth of perfection, grappling with inherited prejudice and being recognized for who we are, and on a revolution that starts within.
In a turning cultural tide, non-religious Millennials and the Christian church find themselves at odds. But do they have to be?
American politics is caught between two competing ideologies: Nietzsche’s doctrine of strength and power over weakness, and the Judeo-Christian ethics of humility and compassion for the weak. A young theologian seeks to understand American civil religion.
Omid Safi on the experience of being institutionally invisible — and how our structures and spirits might change to acknowledge each other’s entire being.
There are gems at the heart of all our faith traditions. Omid Safi on the challenge ahead to polish away the impurities of hatred and greed that keep the light from shining.
To elevate the spirit, we must nurture the soul and the rational mind, alike.
What if our relationship with God were more long, tender, even humorous?
Paul Elie navigates the winding path of Advent, and finds quiet ways to start anew in the meeting of ritual and the rhythms of everyday life.
In our pursuit of justice, we must cling to what illuminates the darkness and keep the pain and indignation that fuel us from hardening to hatred.
A Jewish rabbi and a Mormon bishop unite their voices in an invitation to unity, and remind us that our diversity in race, religion, and politics is what makes our nation great.
In a bold declaration, one of the key leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention is taking a stand, and reclaiming the core of his conservative roots.
What if our disenchantment is an opportunity? This moment calls us not to fall backward into cynicism, but to face difficult truths, and to work together to create a new reality.
Athleticism can pay off with glory and spectacle, but it’s also a daily ritual, a crucible for character. Theologian Don C. Richter explores the the spiritual underpinnings of the discipline of sport.
From Becoming Wise, New Monastic Shane Claiborne speaks of bridging the gap between the structures we are raised in and the human needs around us.
A gift of verse as we reach the close of the season of Ramadan — testaments to the comfort of faith across a lifetime, from the safety of home to the surprising kinship of a stranger.
Rabbi and philosopher Jonathan Sacks speaks of difference as expansive and unifying, rather than a force for division.
“Let yourself be silently pulled by what you love.” Weaving poesy with mellifluous prose, an Egyptian poet celebrates the power of the lyrical art to bring us closer to the divine, and to ourselves.
We so often highlight acts of hostility and hate, but we have a tougher time amplifying the good. Omid Safi appeals to our collective power to undermine hatred by elevating the good and the beautiful.
A secular Jewish man takes umbrage when his close Christian friend says he believes he will go to hell. After he returns to his religious tradition, he says, he understands these inner and outer tensions as essential to faith — even if they disagree with his personal wishes.
Faith can be a salve for the soul in the face of the suffering we witness. But, Omid Safi reminds us, our spiritual love must be bolstered by how we stand for the weak and vulnerable in our midst.
Our language to be inclusive through terms like “Judeo-Christian” and “Abrahamic” might not be big enough to encompass the needs of the many.
When a young, Evangelical Christian is diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma, it’s the music legend David Bowie who provides him with salvation and a renewed hope in “the Church of Man.”
Sometimes when a conflict involves Muslims, “Islam” may not be the best category for understanding it. Omid Safi with a reflection on the current crisis between Iran and Saudi Arabia, and why framing it as religion is not the most helpful framework.
Unexpected relationships can lead to deep and lasting learning and growth.
The Philippine-Catholic ritual of pabasa reveals the power of song to reacquaint us with tradition, bridge superficial divides, and connect us through the kinship of our imperfections.
The image of a small boy’s body washed onto the beach awakened the world to the largest refugee crisis in decades. Omid Safi shares his heartbreak, reminding us that love and compassion must lead toward action and must reach across geographical boundaries and borders of faith.
Most of us chant tunes from the classic musical, but have you considered the spiritual lessons that the movie offers?
Experiencing the ineffable is a winding path, a journey with as many pivots and tacks as straight lines. And sometimes you find your course in a dentist’s chair, contemplating why the this matters and realizing you just need to show up.
Is our so-called polarization a crafted perception? A truth-telling commentary on the problem with polls, the need for curiosity in public life, and a call for a new kind of conversation on what we believe — beyond either/or.
New research shows that charitable giving for religious organizations declined in the past few years. This trend, Martin Marty suggests, both reflects American’s dwindling interest in religious institutions and offers an opportunity for religious organizations to appeal to “the better angels of their nature.”
With ISIS insurgent forces moving towards Baghdad, a religious historian hears the echoes of past foreign policy missteps. And, once again, he sees Sunni and Shi’ite forces preparing for war.
A new survey shows that Christians who take phone polls exaggerate their attendance more than those who take online polls. But, Martin Marty says, it’s showing what we all have known for centuries.
In the debate between scientific fact and religious faith, the author wonders if we, as skeptical people living in an age of science, have the capability believing in myth. Or, do we prefer living in a meaningless world.
How do we fulfill the dream that was bequeathed to us? By practicing the joyful art of doing life together across racial categories without fear.
The two sisters known as CocoRosie seek out comfort in the mysterious. Visually arresting, their music is full of wonder and absurdity — at once unnerving and familiar. Take a listen, it might surprise you.
Few expressions of religion are as public and inescapable as buildings. Some photos of the best of the best of this year’s religious architecture from Faith & Form.
Krista sits down with The Takeaway to explain the impulses behind the Pew polls on the religiously unaffiliated Millennials. She believes that this growing number of unaffiliated young people are a source of renewal of religion in the U.S.
How has your religious identity changed? Does faith still play an important role in your life? Are you concerned that young people are leaving religious institutions? Join John Hockenberry today (Friday, October 18) at 2:00 pm ET to participate in a live online chat. Whatever questions or comments you have, we hope you add your voice to the conversation.
Why are atheism and agnosticism on the rise? And what does it take to go against your family’s faith? Three young atheists discuss how they began to question their faith and what it was like to leave the church.
Three young Muslim-Americans — Kamran, Tasneem, and Zahra — struggle to reconcile their “Muslim” and “American” identities. Why don’t we hear more of this in the media?
Shifts in the U.S.’ ethnic composition are portentous for religious institutions, communities, loyalties, and identities. The white majority, says Martin Marty, can kvetch or use it as an opportunity to reassess religious commitment.
“Every living and healthy religion has a marked idiosyncrasy” wrote philosopher George Santayana, and its power comes from the “special…
A.E. Lefton on Bahá’í leaders being persecuted and imprisoned in Iran — and how they remind her of the sacrifice and the richness of human life.
Glenn Greewald’s calling out of Sam Harris’ speech as anti-Muslim rhetoric sparked quite a debate. Is Mr. Harris a new form of atheism an old form of colonialism?
Vigorous discussions on what we’re owed and what we earn, the slow work of healing, and stories of inspiration about being alone in this busy world.
Listen to Marie Howe read these striking lines from her poem. Her ability to read her own work is marvelous.
The public’s trust in “organized religion” is on the decline. While wearying, Martin Marty says that these polls offer insights and lessons on how religious institutions must serve the public better.