The short, famous, phrase of Friedrich Nietzsche, "God is dead," is an aphorism and not a statement of belief. Nietzsche did not originate the phrase, but he used it most notably in a parable about a madman. Using the form of a parable uniquely sets the phrase in poignant and poetic expression. If Nietzsche was [...]
In a culture that increasingly equates the voice of a few on the “religious right” with the voices of all American Christians, Westar Institute finds it necessary to state unequivocally that the misappropriation of Biblical stories to support and defend oppressors and predators with little or no regard of context or historical learning is counter [...]
My first experiment with the historical Jesus in church occurred in Hamilton, Ontario. I was appointed to lead a community set up to explore new forms of Christianity. I wanted to see if it was possible to take the historical Jesus to church. The answer turned out to be yes, but the church won’t like [...]
I had a great conversation with one of our scholars, Dr. Jarmo Tarkki, recently (you can watch the clip here) where we talked about the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and how Martin Luther paved the way for the church to keep re-imagining and re-inventing itself.
Who wants to argue with a Rabbi? I do not, but this week a situation fell upon me. A local Rabbis of the Orthodox tradition cornered me and insisted that Moses wrote the Torah, the first five books of the Bible. Beyond this, he claimed that in Judaism such knowledge is unquestionable. He seemed eager [...]
Westar Institute fosters collaborative, cumulative research in religious studies and communicates the results of the scholarship to a broad, non-specialist public.