Sunday, August 26, 2012

Blog Series: Sunday Sermon Podcasts- That Rascally Rabbi: Holy Rascals

I am very fond of my old Religious Studies teacher, Rabbi Rami, so I decided that I would share podcasts weekly of his talks with the Unitarian Universalists of Murfreesboro I visited back in 2010. Today's podcast was recorded back in February 2012 entitled "Holy Rascals: Crazy Wisdom for Crazy Times."


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I've always enjoyed Rabbi Rami's storytelling style. I love the concept of breaking out of your "cage" and pursuing that place, whatever that place may be. So what do you think? Is there anyone else you would also consider a modern holy rascal? Rabbi Rami and his fellow holy rascals have been working on a film project for quite some time you can find here.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Education I Haz It

I thought I would share a couple of gems floating around the internets. Although you might receive a slight headache afterwards, enjoy!

(Both via Unreasonable Faith, I love you guys!)

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Chattanooga Mosque Now Open!

The Chattanooga mosque I was hoping would open soon has been opened since July 20th. The official opening date is August 25th and the Chattanooga Muslim community has welcomed churches and city officials to the event. It opened so quietly and without ANY controversy or resistance that I thought it was still under construction. I've been following the construction of this mosque for quite a while and I'm glad there was no grass roots opposition. The long embattled Murfreesboro mosque has also recently opened its doors after 2 years of construction and delays due to lawsuits (video below).  You can read the full story and video of the Chattanooga mosque here.

 I am hoping to visit both mosques one day and I sadly won't be able to attend the opening of the Chattanooga mosque. Even though there was no opposition in opening of the Chattanooga mosque I'm hoping others will also visit and at the very least learn something about their neighbors. Hopefully the more visible and the more we learn about our neighbors the less likely there will be another shooting because of religious intolerance and ignorance. For more information on the Chattanooga mosque and driving direction visit their website here.

 I am ecstatic and proud to call myself a Chattanoogan!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Tcha, You know what... Uhh-Uhh

This clip is insane. INSANE! I can't even begin to describe what just happened. I believe I actually got dumber after listening to this clip. On the Dana Show, hosted by Dana Loesch a conservative radio talk show host, Kay called in to voice her concerns about Chik-Fil-A-gate. Kay barely got a sentence in the entire time as Dana bombarded her with a series of accusations, literally shouting her down.Literally.

(HUGE h/t to On Knees for Jesus)

Let's run down a list of the statements/points made by Dana:
  • You don't sound like any Christian that I know
  • Doesn't understand how Kay can practice Christianity while claiming another Christian's viewpoint as hate
  • What is hateful about Cathy's statement (true, nothing innately hateful but is missing the real topic behind the controversy. The issue is about the group he funds which wants to criminalize gay marriage.)
  • You only subscribe to certain aspects of Christianity
  • That's not how the gospels are presented.
  • You sound like anything but a Christian
  • Doesn't understand how certain aspects of the Christian faith is hateful
  • You think God is hateful then?
  • You're essentially calling Christ hateful.
  • Is astonished over the statement that Christ doesn't directly address the gay community.
  • (My favorite line) Give me the verse. Give me the verse. Give me the verse. No, no, no, no. Kay, give me the verse.
  • The burden of proof is on you, you called my show.
  • I want you to show me in the Bible where Christ preached hate?
  • Stated that false Christians like Kay ran Dana from church. 
  • and another favorite, Kay is the type of person that embarrasses the faith.
There is so much here that I can not begin to compute what I just heard. I literally jumped up, darted across the room to share this clip. It just boggles me how people can be so relentlessly unyielding to simply sit down and listen. Just listen. All Kay wanted was to be heard, even for a brief 5 minutes. Yes it is Dana's show and I'm sure she loves her job, (I once worked at a college radio station and absolutely loved it) but it is a talk show. If you invite listeners to call in at least give them the chance to make their statement. This spiraled out of control quickly, which is why people can't talk properly about gay marriage and the Chik-fil-A incident. Listening doesn't equate to losing ground in a debate, it means you care enough about the subject to pay attention to both sides of the issue. That and you don't come across like a total a$$hole.

I don't know much about Dana but she reminds me of someone else who likes to plug their ears.

Give me the verse. Give me the verse. Give me the verse. No, no, no, no. Kay, give me the verse.

La la la la la,
 la la la la la. 
Thank you for playing.

Monday, August 6, 2012

I'm on Cloud Atlas

I recently stumbled upon this incredible trailer of Cloud Altas to be released on October 26th.

I honestly never knew this novel existed until seeing this trailer. I know trailers are meant to hype up the film, and boy am I hyped for both the film and novel. Written by David Mitchell the 2004 novel consists of six stories spanning from the 19th century to a post-apocalyptic future. The stories are connected through the characters where, for example, the  main character of story #2 reads story #1 in the form of a diary found on a shelf. Each story is interrupted by the following story and after the closing of the 6th story the novel returns back to finish each one with the novel ending back where the reader started (Wikipedia). It is an interesting way to write a novel which I hope won't be too confusing to those watching the film. I'm just concerned if the audience will have enough time to appreciate the characters and different story lines in just under 3 hours.

What I really enjoyed was the theme of interconnectedness woven throughout the characters of the six different stories and time periods. The concept of how our lives are interconnected into the lives of others I can't describe it. A part of what inspired my spiritual journey (and this blog) began when my wife and I found out we were having our first child. My mind exploded for weeks daydreaming about our new family and beyond (I recently turned 22 at the time). What followed were months of deep self reflection and mediation. How will I inspire my children? Will I be a good father? Will I repeat the actions of my father and his father? What if I screw it all up? Do I have anything worth passing on to the next generation? Will I have enough love for all of them? (I know this all may sound chessy and it'll get extra cheddary in a moment.) For the first time ever I felt truly connected to mankind ( cheddar). I felt as a link in a chain, a part of something bigger, grander than myself. Years earlier in high school I had designed a symbol and got it tattooed on my back. I had this idea to start a family tradition having my children (voluntarily) receive this symbol on their 18th birthday. I envisioned myself years in the future posing with my grandchildren also showing off their new tattoos. I felt this would be a way of passing on a part of myself and securing immortality.

I'm looking forward to reading the novel and watching the film. Has anyone read the book yet and if so feel free to comment below (try to keep it spoiler free though). For those who've read the book does the trailer appear to be faithful to the novel?