Category: Perspective

Blessed Are the Caregivers

The authors in this issue are chaplains, faith leaders, and professors. In these roles, they lament inequities, cry out for change, and demonstrate how to “treat the people’s needs as holy.” By Wendy McDowell

Paradise Waiting: The Power to Comfort

All kinds of power are explored here—personal, spiritual, political, and institutional power—and though they address disparate contexts, the pieces speak to one another in poignant ways. By Wendy McDowell

Filling in the Contours of ‘Unbelievers’

The authors in this issue do not lament or apologize for these shifts; they dive deeper into why they are happening, where the unaffiliated are gathering, and how they are making meaning. By Wendy McDowell

Flipping the Script

In this issue are models of courageous practices, scholarship, and creative work grounded in communities already practiced in the art of script-flipping. By Wendy McDowell

Embodied Practices, (Re)lived History

Yom Kippur is one example among many in Judaism, demonstrating the way in which the past becomes an ever-present history–a history that is relived, reenacted, every day, through every prayer, in every holiday. By Rachel Slutsky

Multiple Lenses, Essential Gestures

It strikes me that most of the articles in this issue involve putting on new lenses so that we might make different gestures. By Wendy McDowell

Bearing Witness

This moment in history makes a claim on us all. By Stephanie Paulsell

Rethinking the Sacred

For the authors in this issue, experiences of film, literature, and sound are often inseparable from religious experience. By Ingrid Norton

Nurturing Necessary Conversations

Interwoven themes of voice and expression, close relationship, conversation, and community run through this issue. By Julie Barker Gillette

Making Room

A thread running through a majority of the essays in this issue has to do with hospitality to the “stranger” and its opposite—hostility, fortification, and exclusion. Who do we let in, and who do we try to keep out? By Wendy McDowell

An Encounter with a Painting

My dialogue with An Encounter at a Well over the course of a couple of years ended up challenging, loosening, and undoing assumptions I didn’t realize I held. By Wendy McDowell

The Masks We Wear

In this issue, there is not a sense of “landing” on certainties, but more a feeling of “dreaming” (in all its connotations). By Wendy McDowell

The Poetry of Pragmatism

The authors address issues, events, and groups about which we often find ourselves unable to dialogue—because acts of violence or deprivation can render us speechless, slip us into denial, or drive us into opposing camps. By Wendy McDowell

Lost and Found in Translation

Whether planned or accidental, desired or dreaded, the passage from one place to another, one life stage to another, or one state or status to another, often figures centrally in the stories we tell about our lives. By Michael Jackson

Defining Our Humanity

If we are honest about our own emotions, we are likely weeping the tears of Aristotle’s catharsis, which are worth next to nothing if, through their shedding, they—and we—effect no change. By Kit Dodgson

Each Person, Each Day

A central theme in this issue is that silence is not an option if we are to act with moral integrity on issues of urgent concern. By Wendy McDowell

Home to the Ever-House

Each of the poems in this issue could be considered a prayer, an expression reaching toward the infinite or the precious finite. By Susan Lloyd McGarry

Intentionally Unfinished

I wonder if it might be possible to make our unintentional communities more intentional by asking ourselves, “On whom are we focused?” By Wendy McDowell

Cherishing Our Strangeness

Confronting our definitions is not merely an intellectual exercise—it can alter the way we see the world and ourselves in it, shaking and sometimes even ending our faith. By Wendy McDowell

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