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Essay/
Religion
Zen terror

Master Nissho Inoue and his band of assassins teach some uncomfortable truths about terrorism, for those who will hear

Brian Victoria

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History
Muslims of early America

Muslims came to America more than a century before Protestants, and in great numbers. How was their history forgotten?

Sam Haselby

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History
Medieval parasites

People in the Middle Ages took great care over cleanliness – except the clergy, who accepted filth as a sign of devotion

Katherine Harvey

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History
How the poor became blessed

Greco-Roman gods had no interest in the poor nor was organised charity a religious duty. How was Christianity different?

Pieter van der Horst

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Stories and literature
Islam after Salman

The Satanic Verses would not be written or published today. What’s changed since Salman Rushdie’s notorious novel?

Bruce Fudge

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Religion
The first God

Out of the many gods of ancient Egypt an inspired Pharaoh created a monotheistic faith. What was Atenism and why did it fail?

James K Hoffmeier

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Consciousness and altered states
Disturbing the silence

The writer and Trappist monk Thomas Merton embodied a paradox, chasing both the purity of silence and the need to break it

Jane Brox

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Rituals and celebrations
The scents of heaven

Frankincense and myrrh have long links to the sacred. Why has Christianity viewed them with both fascination and suspicion?

Timothy Carroll

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Religion
Breath of life

Shinto is uniquely Japanese, yet embodies a once-universal animistic religion of wind and fire, gods and animal spirits

Brian Victoria

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Stories and literature
Pagans against Genesis

Confused, inferior and philosophically unsound: the Greco-Roman critique of the Old Testament could have been written today

Pieter van der Horst

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Anthropology
Relics of power

From the foreskin of Jesus to the scarf of Elvis: why humans cannot resist the magical potency of charismatic objects

Jesper Sørensen

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Religion
Christian Zionism

It’s one of the most successful, and in some ways unlikely, interfaith movements in the modern world

Dan Hummel