Beliefnet
Religion 101
May 2013 Archives

In a controversial move (controversial among many religious conservatives), the Boy Scouts of America recently reversed their longstanding policy banning “open and avowed homosexuals” from becoming Scouts. In other words, the BSA now affirms that it’s okay for Boy Scouts …Read More

Today (Wednesday, May 29), adherents of the Baha’i Faith will celebrate an important holy day. “The Ascension of Baha’u’llah” annually commemorates the anniversary of the death of Baha’u’llah, the founder of the Baha’i Faith. The Ascension of Baha’u’llah is one …Read More

Today (Friday, May 24) marks one of the most important Buddhist holidays. Vesak, otherwise known as “Buddha Day” (or sometimes “Buddha’s Birthday”) commemorates the birth, enlightenment, and death of Siddhartha Gautama, the historical Buddha. Although observed by Buddhists in many …Read More

Tomorrow (May 23), members of the Baha’i Faith will celebrate “the Declaration of the Bab,” one of eleven holy days on the Baha’i religious calendar. Of those eleven Baha’i holy days, work is suspended on nine of them; this is …Read More

In a previous blog entry, I commented upon a recent news story involving the cancellation of an Arkansas school district’s elementary school graduation ceremonies in the wake of a local controversy over prayer, which the district had intended to incorporate …Read More

This Sunday (May 19) is the Christian holiday known as Pentecost, widely regarded by many believers as marking the actual birth or nativity of the church. Pentecost commemorates the descent of, and the manifestation among Christ’s apostles, of the Holy …Read More

At sunset yesterday (Tuesday, May 14), Jews worldwide began the Jewish holiday festival of Shavuot (pronounced “shav-oo-OT”), otherwise known as the Feast of Weeks. Shavout is traditionally both an agricultural harvest festival (originally dating back to when the first fruits …Read More

There seems to be a rather widespread misunderstanding regarding the actual underlying motivations of people who object to schools leading prayers and courts posting copies of the Ten Commandments, or who protest against “under God” being in the Pledge of …Read More

Documentary films relating to matters of religion and belief are always worth knowing about, and often worth checking out. A new film entitled The Unbelievers, looking at the importance of reason and science — and casting a critical eye upon …Read More

Today (as I write, Sunday, May 5, 2013), Orthodox Christians worldwide are observing Easter Sunday. Christianity, like other religions, subdivides into a number of major branches. Catholics are the single largest such major branch or subdivision within Christianity, accounting for …Read More