Posts Tagged "interfaith"

Prayer versus meditation? They’re more alike than we realize

January 18, 2012

Doug Todd (Vancouver Sun): You could call it a religious war of words, with the West Coast serving as one of its most intense battlegrounds.

The bid to win hearts and minds pits Buddhist meditation against Christian prayer, with meditation, especially so-called “mindfulness,” seeming to be gaining ground.

It’s been the focus of more than 60 recent scholarly studies. It’s being embraced by hundreds of psychotherapists, who increasingly offer Buddhist mindfulness to clients dealing with depression and anxiety. It’s been on the cover of Time magazine.

Even though polls show there are 10 times more Christians in the Pacific Northwest than Buddhists, the forms of …

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Buddhist lifestyle becoming more popular in Utah

November 7, 2011

Steve Kent: Religious and non-religious people alike can benefit from Buddhism, according to a presenter Saturday at the Museum of Anthropology’s new exhibit honoring Buddhism in the Cache Valley.

In his experience as a teacher at the Cache Valley Buddhist Sangha, associate English Professor Michael Sowder said he has worked with people of all religious backgrounds who practice meditation and study Buddhist teachings.

People with such a wide range of religious inclination can practice Buddhism because its teachings neither endorse nor reject any particular beliefs, Sowder said.

“You can have a religious belief and practice Buddhism at the same time,” he said. “Buddhism will …

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Meditation chapel remodeled to embrace all faiths

Banner Boswell Medical Center [in Sun City, Arizona] reopened its chapel this week, just in time for Ash Wednesday.

The newly remodeled space, now a non-denominational meditation chapel, offers both patients and their families a quiet space to think and escape the busy hospital atmosphere.

Chaplain Larry Weidner, the director of Spiritual Care, said that the remodel is more inclusive to all religions. Instead of pews, the room now contains individual chairs, and the art is not specific to one religion, but a trio of paintings on one wall incorporates symbols from all faiths.

“As a hospital, we minister to anyone that comes here,” Weidner said.

Weidner pointed out that … Read more »

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Meditation chapel reflects diversity of spiritual culture

After several months of remodeling, Banner Boswell Medical Center in Sun City has reopened its Meditation Chapel inside the hospital’s main entrance.

The remodeling project was done to reflect the diversity of the spiritual culture of patients, visitors and staff.
The chapel has a new water feature, an original triptych painting representing the 10 major world religions. The remodeling project also included the replacement of pews with individual chairs to create an atmosphere for individual meditation and reflection.

The chapel features a library of more than…

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40 pamphlets on various supportive topics and a special “faith box,” where handwritten requests for prayers can be

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Meditation and modern art meet in Rothko Chapel

MICHELE NORRIS, host:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I’m Michele Norris.

MELISSA BLOCK, host:

And I’m Melissa Block.

The Rothko Chapel in Houston is more than an interfaith chapel. It’s also a center for human rights – and a one-man art museum devoted to 14 gigantic paintings by the abstract expressionist Mark Rothko. The chapel opened its doors 40 years ago.

And as Pat Dowell found, it continues to make an impression on all who enter.

PAT DOWELL: Walk up to the chapel from the south and the first thing you see is a small pool with Barnett Newman’s steel sculpture, “Broken Obelisk,” apparently floating on the … Read more »

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Yoga has avatars in America (Times of India)

January 10, 2011

Yoga seems to have been “reincarnated” in America and some other parts of the world.

Various organizations are promoting “Christian Yoga”, claiming to provide a Christian approach to yoga. There are DVDs like “Christoga: Yoga Filled Body – Christ Filled Soul” (60 minutes of Yoga with bible scriptures recited by Janine. Yoga with Christ as the meditation focus!). There is a “Christian Yoga Magazine”. There are books like “Yoga for Christians: A Christ-Centered Approach to Physical and Spiritual Health through Yoga”,” Holy Yoga: Exercise for the Christian Body and Soul”, etc.

Welcoming the widespread interest in yoga, Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that … Read more »

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Curious Indonesian Muslims join peaceful but controversial Falun Gong

January 9, 2011

Nyoman Suryanata must have greeted at least 100 people at the National Monument complex in Jakarta last Sunday, trying to persuade passersby to sit down with him and try the controversial practice of Falun Gong.

“Please, Ma’am! Try out our meditation. It only takes a couple of minutes. Sir, have a go at meditation! Free of charge,” the 59-year-old businessman called out, offering brochures he had made himself.

Surya, as he prefers to be called, had prepared 100 brochures — at the end of the day there were none left.

From a distance, a young couple observed the practice carefully.

They were intrigued by the group’s slow-motion movements, designed to … Read more »

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Students learn about healing programs for inmates

November 15, 2010

Prison inmates can find hope and healing through meditation and yoga, students at a local high school found out this week, in a presentation on the work of Sister Elaine MacInnes and her charity, Freeing the Human Spirit.

“Every day, 36,000 Canadians wake up in prison cells,” Cheryl Vanderburg, Freeing the Human Spirit’s program co-ordinator, told her teenage audience at Bishop Marrocco/Thomas Merton Catholic Secondary School, Wednesday morning, Nov. 10.

“More than half the people in prison are victims of child abuse. The majority have unstable job history. Every day, I go into prisons and I see kids like yourselves. They’ve done something stupid and gotten caught.”

Vanderburg was a … Read more »

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Virginia mother and wife of Mumbai victims seeks to help children in conflict areas

November 12, 2010

Virginia resident Kia Scherr walked quietly through the jasmine-scented halls of Mumbai’s Oberoi Trident high-rise hotel as Indian staff members gently smiled.

On Nov. 26, 2008, her husband, Alan Scherr, 58, and their 13-year-old daughter Naomi were killed when gunmen opened fire in the hotel’s oceanfront restaurant. The Scherrs were among six Americans killed in the Mumbai attacks, which left 166 people dead and more than 230 wounded.

Now Kia Scherr has come to India to meet President Obama during his three-day visit to Mumbai and New Delhi. She said she wants to thank him in person for the condolence letter he wrote her after the attacks, which were carried … Read more »

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East meets west. There’s some wariness at first. But they end up liking each other.

September 29, 2010

As well all know, mathematics is dangerous — especially trigonometry. Rooted as it is in ancient Greek religious practice, young minds exposed to mathematics become open to unwholesome — possibly demonic — spiritual influences. Nah, just joking. The bit about math being rooted in religion is true, naturally, but the possibility that the hypotenuse is the straight line to hell seems far-fetched, to say the least. But Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President Albert Mohler believes something very similar about yoga, according to an article in the Clarion Ledger. Yoga comes from the Hindu tradition, but of course dressing in a leotard and stretching your hamstrings doesn’t strike most people … Read more »

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