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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cyber Worship Resource of the Week is Kashi Ashram

Here is a sample from inside the Book: Cyber Worship in Multifaith Perspectives--full of resources that will facilitate building bridges in a Multifaith society. Table of Contents / Reviews

Chapter 2. 'Cyber Worship as-is On the Web'
Resource of the Week is: Kashi Ashram and its Multifaith Worldview (see description, reviews, etc. on page 69). Order with Publisher:Order from Publisher

My book Talk

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Cyber Worship Resource of the Week is World Prayers

Here is a sample from inside the Book: Cyber Worship in Multifaith Perspectives--full of resources that will facilitate building bridges in a Multifaith society. Table of Contents / Reviews

Chapter 2. 'Cyber Worship As-Is On the Web':
Resource of the Week is World Prayers. This prayers' gateway (also available in book form) includes adorations, celebrations, invocations, and meditations (view description, reviews, etc. of this resource on page 69). Order with Publisher:Order from Publisher

Friday, March 21, 2008

Good Friday! Happy Purim, Narouz & Eid Milad Mubarak, Magha Puja

"Half the world's population is going to be celebrating something," says Raymond Clothey, Professor Emeritus of Religious studies at the University of Pittsburgh. "My goodness," says Delton Krueger, owner of interfaith calendar, who follows "14 major religions and six others." He counts 20 holidays altogether (including some religious double-dips, like Maundy Thursday and Good Friday) between the 20th (which is also quite crowded) and the 21st. He marvels: "There is no other time in 2008 when there is this kind of concentration."

See on the same shelf and aisle: Definitions of Religious Holiday Terms @
Three hands hold out the symbols of the three monotheistic religions.  Sèbastien Dèsarmaux / Godong / Corbis


On Friday more than a billion Christians around the world will mark the gravest observance on their Calendar, Good Friday, the day Jesus died on the cross. (To be followed in two days by Easter Sunday, to mark his Resurrection).

But unlike some holy days - say, Christmas, which some non-Christians in the U.S. observe informally by going to a movie and ordering Chinese food - on this particular Friday, March 21, it seems almost no believer of any sort will be left without his or her own holiday. In what is statistically, at least, a once-in-a-millennium combination, the following will all occur on the 21st:

Purim, a Jewish festival celebrating the biblical book of Esther

Narouz, the Persian New Year, which is observed with Islamic elaboration in Iran and all the "stan" countries, as well as by Zoroastrians and Baha'is.

Eid Milad an Nabi, the Birth of the Prophet, which is celebrated by some but not all Sunni Muslims and, though officially beginning on Thursday, is often marked on Friday.

Small Holi, Hindu, an Indian festival of bonfires, to be followed on Saturday by Holi, a kind of Mardi Gras.

Magha Puja, a celebration of the Buddha's first group of followers, marked primarily in Thailand. AKA Sangha Day.

[Info courtesy: Davendra Gupta]

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Did the Jews pray as Muslims do ?!

"O you who believe! Bow down and prostrate yourselves and serve your Lord, and do good that you may prosper."-(HOLY QURAN 22:77).

"And Abram fell on his face: and God talked with him, saying," - Old Testament (Tanakh) (Genesis 17:3)
"And Moses made haste, and bowed his head toward the earth, and worshiped." - Old Testament (Tanakh Exodus 34:8 Mathew 26:39
"HE (Jesus) fell with his face to the ground and prayed"
"And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship..."-(JOSHUA 5:14)--obviously Jesus was not worshiping himself, he was worshiping God [source]

Quran conforms that salat was lost after some generations for the people of the book. Losing it involved changing it in every aspect. The salat as practiced today by most of the Jews and Christians is different than what was given to their prophets. Very few Jews and Christians have maintained the inherited Salat.

In his comment about these positions the author, To Pray As a Jew wrote : "In most contemporary congregations very few people keep to the tradition of falling prostrate. Sometimes it is only the Prayer leader and the rabbi who does so. In more traditional congregations, however, some worshipers, men and women, will join the Prayer Leader and rabbi in the act of prostrating themselves. In Israeli synagogues, the practice is more widespread than in synagogues elsewhere. Since this is a position that we are unaccustomed to, one who has never done this before might very well demur. But once accomplished, the experience provides such a spiritual uplift that one looks forward to repeating it. Those willing to try this ancient ritual form on the rare occasions that call for it might welcome the following diagrams of the correct procedure."

It is also interesting to learn from this book that the prayers of the Jews involve wash before the prayers, (like Wuduu or ablution for Muslims), and the call for Prayers (like the Azan for the Muslims).
See also: Hamerkaz >> Common Prayers and Blessings:
Berakhot: Blessings
A berakhah (blessing) is a special kind of prayer that is very common in Judaism. Berakhot are recited both as part of the they all start with the word barukh (blessed or praised).
The words barukh and berakhah are both derived from the Hebrew root Bet-Resh-Kaf, meaning "knee," and refer to the practice of showing respect by bending the knee and bowing. See animation at right. There are several places in Jewish liturgy where this gesture is performed, most of them at a time when a berakhah is being recited.
And Buddhists too:

  • Early Christians Prayer method
  • Jewish Prayer (early days)
  • Do the Jews ever pray like the Muslims?
  • Muslims - more Christian than the Christians themselves?
  • Islamic Beliefs and Practices - Glimpses in the Bible
  • Prostration (...Major world religions employ prostration ... including: Baha'i Faith, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism, Islam, Judaism, Jainism)
  • 5 ways Yoga is a basic practice for Muslims
  • Wednesday, March 05, 2008

    Dealing with Mosquitoes: A Faith-based Survey

    Greengrass, recycling, and God: From here to there and back again: Humanity's journey from Eden to the Noosphere: Always seeking excellence, always finding (almost) the same. Catholic theologian, John R. Aurelio in his 1989 book Mosquitoes in Paradise: A new look at Genesis, Jesus, and the Meaning of Life (Crossroad, NY) hints at a slightly different interpretation of the story of Eden. NB. This is only a sample survey. Ask me for more faith-based resources.

    The Sixth Day
    A group of wise men gathered to discuss the work of God; they wanted to know why he had left it to the sixth day to create man.
    "He thought about first organising the Universe well, so that we could have all the marvels available to us," said one of them.
    "First of all He wanted to run some tests on animals, so that He would not make the same mistakes with us," argued another.
    One wise Jew showed up at the meeting. They told him the theme of the discussion: "In your opinion, why did God leave it to the last day to create man?"
    "Very simple," commented the wise man. "So that when we were moved by pride, we would remember that even a simple mosquito enjoyed priority in the work of the Divine."
    How to live with others By Paulo Coelho, © Translated by James Mulholland

    "A mosquito by any name...
    The Spanish called them, "musketas,", the native Hispanic Americans "zancudos." "Musketas" is a Spanish word meaning "little fly" while "zancudos," means "long-legged." Scandanavians called them by a variety of names including "myg" and "myyga" while the Greeks called them "konopus." The use of the word "mosquito" is apparently of North American origin and dates back to about 1583. In Europe, mosquitoes were called "gnats" by the English, "Les moucherons" or "Les cousins" by French writers, and the Germans used the name "Stechmucken" or "Schnacke." In 300 BC, Aristotle referred to mosquitoes as "empis" in his Historia Animalium where he documented their life cycle."

    PUNCHLINE from an interview with Church Militant: Ann Coulter on God, Faith, and Liberals

  • Many arguments in favor of Darwinian evolution strike me as actually being arguments against the existence of God--that is, why would a creator create tapeworms, disease viruses, and other bad things? Why do you think such things exist in a world of intelligent design?

    Your question is incomprehensible. I assume you are trying to ask me: "Why would God create tapeworms?"

    My answer is: God also created mosquitoes, which I hate. But purple martins love mosquitoes and would probably all starve without them. It's kind of a “big picture” thing. Of course that doesn't explain why He created Michael Moore. For that, I have no explanation. My guess is that disease, pestilence, and Michael Moore are all perversions of the good that God created, a result of sin entering the world through Adam and Eve.
  • Tuesday, March 04, 2008

    Economics and Spirituality: The Nexus

    Sunday, March 02, 2008

    Next Gen Giving: Charity and Social Networks

    Lee Rickwood, February 20, 2008,

    Using Web 2.0 platforms, charitable websites and online social lending can build communities and changes lives.

    Want to lend me a few bucks?!?You'll feel better if you do. You'll meet lots of new friends. You won't really risk a thing. And my life will be forever changed - for the better.That's the embedded promise of what's various social lending, online giving and Web-based micro-finance. This new tech trend combines the online power of social networking with inherent human instincts of cooperation and generousity to create the charitable Web. Continue reading

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