Religion and Theology

the article I have to use in my essay/ interview Talking about religion — at last Daley, Bill . Chicago Tribune ; Chicago, Ill. [Chicago, Ill]13 Apr 2014: 6.4. ProQuest document link ABSTRACT “The trick to a good religious conversation is humility, humor and sincerity — applied in the right way,” Stephen Asma, a philosophy professor at Columbia College in Chicago and author of, among other books, “Why I Am a Buddhist: No-Nonsense Buddhism With Red Meat and Whiskey,” writes in an email from Beijing, where he is teaching on a Fulbright Fellowship. “A wonderful conversation starter is, ‘I don’t know anything, or I don’t know much about your religious practices and I would appreciate it if you can help me understand the significance of your upcoming holiday,’ ” said Stuart Matlins, a Woodstock, Vt.-based publisher of Skylight Paths, a publishing house specializing in religious-themed books, and co-editor of “How to Be the Perfect Stranger: The Essential Religious Etiquette Handbook.” FULL TEXT Religion, like politics, is something polite people aren’t supposed to talk about, particularly at the dinner table. And there’s sound reasoning for this: Passions can flame, voices spike, dissent can explode into long-festering disputes. But if one never talks about religion, how will one ever learn? And that’s seen as vital now as society is becoming more multicultural, more multidenominational and ever more vocal. “Over the years, I have noticed several changes,” Vasudha Narayanan, director of the University of Florida’s Center for the Study of Hindu Traditions, wrote in an email. “People are less than shy about talking about religion; in fact, they wear it on their sleeves and also display it through their car bumper stickers.” Narayanan, a religion professor and author or editor of seven books, including “Hinduism,” believes talking about religion is a “good thing.” What’s important, she stressed in both the email and a subsequent telephone interview, is talking the talk in a “nonconfrontational” manner. April offers plenty of opportunity for good discussion. The month holds a number of days important to various religious and cultural groups worldwide. Two of the most well-known for North Americans are Passover, which begins at sundown April 14, and Easter, which for both Eastern and Western Christians occurs April 20. (Curious about other religious holidays in April? Check the Web. Interfaithcalendar.org, for one, offers a month-by-month calendar.) “The trick to a good religious conversation is humility, humor and sincerity — applied in the right way,” Stephen Asma, a philosophy professor at Columbia College in Chicago and author of, among other books, “Why I Am a Buddhist: No-Nonsense Buddhism With Red Meat and Whiskey,” writes in an email from Beijing, where he is teaching on a Fulbright Fellowship. “If you approach a friend or acquaintance with a humble attitude — the opposite of missionary zeal — you’ll start a more honest dialogue. Sprinkle in a little bit of humor about your faith (yes, even serious believers should have a sense of humor) and ask sincere questions.” “Sincerity about your motives is crucial,” Asma added. “Many people maintain devotion to their beliefs by harboring secret disdain for every other faith. If you’re just baiting someone in order to roll your eyes later with like-minded PDF GENERATED BY PROQUEST.COM Page 1 of 4 friends, then you’re not having a genuine interfaith conversation.” Jane Larkin of Dallas, who writes about parenting for InterfaithFamily.com and pens “The Seesaw” column on intermarriage for The Jewish Daily Forward, says she and her husband, an Episcopalian, talk about religion all the time with their 9-year-old son. This is a change for her. Growing up, religion was discussed only by “people who were very observant or crazy,” she said. “We want our son to grow up understanding religion is not a forbidden topic, and he needs to be able to speak about it,” said Larkin, whose book, “From Generation to Generation: A Story of Intermarriage and Jewish Continuity,” will be published in June. Visit, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theology

 

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“It is very much in your face down here, and you need to be able to talk about it, take a position and support it.” Realize, too, that generational or cultural differences can add tension. Put, for example, parents who moved here from another country with their more Americanized children, and there “may be an energetic discussion,” said Edgar Hopida, communications director for the Islamic Society of North America in Plainfield, Ind. Why does talk of religion generate so much heat? “It often comes from a gut place rather than a heart place, and a gut place is more reactive,” said the Rev. Shannon A. White, pastor of the Wilton Presbyterian Church in Connecticut and author of such books as “How Was School Today? Fine” and “Invisible Conversations With Aging Parents.””When you talk to someone about your religion or religion in general, it’s important to come from the heart place,” she said. “You are not trying to change people. You are interested, curious even, in the other person and what their experience is.” – — How to have a spirited spiritual conversation Be honest. “A wonderful conversation starter is, ‘I don’t know anything, or I don’t know much about your religious practices and I would appreciate it if you can help me understand the significance of your upcoming holiday,’ ” said Stuart Matlins, a Woodstock, Vt.-based publisher of Skylight Paths, a publishing house specializing in religious- themed books, and co-editor of “How to Be the Perfect Stranger: The Essential Religious Etiquette Handbook.” Reach out bravely. “Say you grow up a fundamentalist Christian in southwest Missouri, and the people you congregate with are from a similar background. If you have never talked to someone of a different ilk, it can be scary talking to someone outside the fort,” said Susan Campbell, the East Haven, Conn.-based author of a memoir titled “Dating Jesus: A Story of Fundamentalism, Feminism, and the American Girl.” “But the fort is completely boring. It’s like reading newspaper columnists who completely agree with you.” Realize culture and religion are often deeply intertwined. Gain insight into religion, said Vasudha Narayanan, a religion professor at the University of Florida, through food, music, dance, performance and other cultural activities. Use humor cautiously. Don’t make jokes until you get to know the people you’re with, Narayanan said. “Frequently people from an ethnic or religious group make jokes about themselves, and it can be hysterically funny, and we are tempted to follow it up with another in the same genre. But … the same joke told by an ‘outsider’ can be offensive.” Stay calm. “Religion is so emotional,” said Jane Larkin, who writes for InterfaithFamily.com. “It’s sometimes hard to walk away or take a deep breath. You will never change someone’s mind with an emotional reaction. Stay calm, state your position.” Be willing to change the subject. “Sometimes you have to pick your battles,” said the Rev. Shannon A. White, pastor of Wilton Presbyterian Church in Connecticut. “Sometimes you can change the subject and say, ‘I don’t want to go there.’ Or you can say, ‘We agree to disagree,’ which is not easily bought by someone who needs to be right. You just say, ‘There are a lot of different viewpoints. I’m just expressing one.’ ” — B.D. Required Resources Read/review the following resources for this activity: Textbook: Review chapters as needed Lesson Link (library article): Talking about religion — at last: Old taboo is fading, but broaching the subject still requires restraint Minimum of 1 scholarly source (in addition to the textbook/lesson) Instructions For this assignment you are required to sit down for a conversation with someone whose religious identity differs from your own (this means that if you identify as Christian, for example, you should find a conversation partner who does not identify as such). The purpose of this exercise is for you to engage with someone else in a conversation about religion. That means that you will not only ask questions, but you will hopefully answer questions about your own beliefs, as well. Please note atheist and agnostic are not acceptable choices for your assignment as neither is recognized as a religion. Before meeting with your partner, review the above article for this activity, “Talking About Religion – How to Do It Right” (link in Required Resources), for some guidance on how to engage in conversations about religion. You may also wish to share this information with your partner, if needed. In this assignment, you will listen to the ideas of someone whom you identify as religiously “other.” You will share your own ideas (though to a lesser extent) and report on what you learned about this other religion, including your partner’s beliefs and how those beliefs compare to your own religious upbringing and/or current practice. The report should describe the major topics of discussion (below) and a detailed summary of what you learned. Your final essay should include all of the following: Introduction: Provide some cultural and historical context for the religious tradition of your conversation partner. Include why you chose this religion and person. (It is important that you do some research before you have your conversation so that you ask informed questions that come from genuine interest.) This should not be a long section of the essay. Describe your conversation partner’s beliefs. Include the following 8 elements of religion from Week 1: Belief system. Several beliefs fit together into a complete and systematic interpretation of the universe and the place of humans in it; it explains a religion’s worldview. Highlight the most important. Community. How are the belief system and its ideals practiced as a group of believers who come together? How do they come together? Central myths. Stories that express the religious beliefs and history of a religion and give it meaning through retelling and/or re-enacting (e.g., major events in the life of Krishna, the enlightenment of Buddha, death and resurrection of Jesus, Mohammed’s escape from Mecca, Israelite’s escape through the Red Sea, and so on). Ritual. Ceremonies and/or Rites that enrich beliefs. Ethics. Rules about human behavior which are often believed to be given by a supernatural realm (God) or socially generated guidelines. Characteristic emotional experiences. Some emotions associated with religion are dread, guilt, awe, mystery, devotion, conversion, “rebirth,” liberation, ecstasy bliss, inner peace. Material expressions. Physical elements like statues, paintings, musical compositions, instruments, objects like incense, flowers, clothing, architecture or sacred places. Sacredness/Holiness. A distinction is made between what is ordinary and what is sacred through use of a different language or ceremony or clothing or acts of reverence. Certain objects, actions, people and places may share or express sacredness/holiness (e.g., receiving communion, Mecca, an altar, a shrine, the Dali Lama, menorah). Identify any conflicts between the stated beliefs of their tradition and their personal beliefs. After hearing your partner’s description, explain whose theory of the origin of religions (Week 1) you think offers the best explanation for his/her religion? What challenges can your partner identify that their religious tradition faces in the modern world? Do they feel that their tradition is responding positively? Explain. Examine if the tradition is focused on belief (orthodoxy) or behavior (orthopraxis). Compare your partner’s beliefs and practices to your own religious upbringing and/or current practice. This is to be done in the report not as a debate with your partner. Conclusion: Conclude with your personal reaction to this experience and any additional questions that came up after your conversation. This is a formal academic paper, so pay careful attention to the basics of writing a good English composition, to essay structure, and complete APA. In addition to outside sources, make sure to reference your textbook and/or lesson. Writing Requirements (APA format) Length: 1000-1200 words (not including title page or references page) 1-inch margins Double spaced 12-point Times New Roman font Title page References page (Cite textbook/lesson and a minimum of 1 outside scholarly source.) Page or paragraph for in-text citations I’m interviewing friend also a nurse Muslim from Maroco. she came to the USA 15 yo to meat her husband. she has set up marriage. she is happy in her marriage. follows traditions of weaving the clothing and covering her hair. she works and caries for house. she believes it’s her daughters choice to follow the Muslim traditions

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