Healing Principles of the Black Church Really Work

As the eyes of America watched the removal of the Confederate flag from the grounds of the South Carolina Capitol July 10, I feel thankful for the Black church and the principled role that it played in bringing a community together at a time that could have led to even greater strife and turmoil. Signing the bill to take down the flag, Gov. Nikki Haley eloquently said their actions “forever showed the state of South Carolina what love and forgiveness looks …

Millennials Create Their Own Expressions of Religion

At Passover seders and in Christian churches this week, families will gather to observe the religious holidays. While some adult children will join in, many will do so out of a sense of obligation rather than practice. More than one-third of all millennials say they are “religiously unaffiliated” today, the highest percentage ever in Pew Research Center polling. It’s not just a rite of passage. Both Gen X and boomers were significantly more religiously affiliated as young adults. So why …

Dalai Lama Opens Senate Session With a Prayer

The 14th Dalai Lama, the exiled Buddhist spiritual leader of Tibet, opened the U.S. Senate session on March 6 with a prayer, which Senate Historian Don Ritchie believes to be a first for a Buddhist. Also known as Tenzin Gyatso, the Dalai Lama, 78, spoke first in the Tibetan language, then in English. “With our thoughts we make our world,” the prayer began. “Our mind is central and precedes our deeds. Speak or act with a pure mind and happiness will …

Goodbye Ageism! Shifting an Old Stereotype

I’m positive: You couldn’t pick a better place to have an International Conference on Positive Aging this week (or any week). It isn’t just because it’s in Florida, but also because it’s specifically in Sarasota County, which happens to have the highest percentage of people age 85-plus in the nation. The event’s host, the Sarasota  non-profit foundation Institute for the Ages, recruits and engages older people and organizations to conduct research on aging issues, connecting companies with their target audience, Sarasota …

Have You Prayed Today? Probably

For more than 60 years now, Congress has set aside one day to be a National Day of Prayer (May 2 this year) – which, it turns out, older Americans may observe the most faithfully. More than two-thirds of all Americans 50 and older (67.1 percent), in fact, say that they pray at least once a day, according to the most recent survey by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago. Only 53.8 percent of adults under …

Magic and Struggle in Ultima’s World

It isn’t the best movie ever made and it wasn’t the best book ever written, but there is something about “Bless Me, Ultima” that makes the story of a boy’s journey through the magical time of his youth a rich and compelling tale. Underlying the dark and spiritual nature of this odyssey of the soul dwell the conflicting realities of good and evil, told against the somber background  that characterized the era of little Antonio Marez y Luna and the …