Culture Articles

Why Buddhism is True by Robert Wright

14 March 2019 | by Reg Naulty

Close-up of book cover. | Courtesy of Simon & Schuster.

Robert Wright has taught psychology and religion at prestigious universities. His motivation here is to overcome, or at least erode, the psychology of tribalism – the tendency to define ourselves by our opposition to some other group. He writes that now we are on the verge of a global community, we...

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‘Telling the Truth About God’ by Rhiannon Grant

07 March 2019 | by Abigail Maxwell

A close up of the book cover. | Courtesy of John Hunt Publishing.

Everyone does theology. Each of us has an understanding of what God is or is not, and for Quakers that begins with our experience. We value our meetings and the experiences we have there, which we might call ‘spiritual’. This is a direct experience, without a priest, and traditions may...

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Seen and Unseen: Ways of being along Quaker and Buddhist paths by Peter Jarman

07 March 2019 | by Roger Iredale

'Ultimately, poetry has a inner magic that is akin to religious insight...' | Detlev Klockow / Unsplash.

In developing a post-Christian and posttheist perception of what is of value in faith and practice, Peter Jarman has produced a challenging study that embraces an investigation of the meaning of God, prayer and spiritual experience. His reflections focus on his experience as a Quaker, on Buddhist belief, and on...

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The poet, the prophet and the pilgrim

07 March 2019 | by Lesley Morris

'they seek the holy space, soul space'. | Levi Guzman / Unsplash.

spirit guides their feet as they dance in a daze, in a haze waving their nets above untamed hair beach side, sea side

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‘He might well be curious about the radically unfenced Quakerism of today.’

28 February 2019 | by Philip Gross

Walt Whitman, circa 1870. | United States Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs division / Wikimedia CC.

Here he is, this Sunday, in the doorway of the Meeting house. He is wearing his hat, the grey sombrero he kept on indoors in what people saw as the Quaker manner, and the clothes that led an admirer to describe him as the ‘Good Grey Poet’. Will we greet...

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21 February 2019 | by Peter Daniels

'...We have them in the gardens inside us.' | Paulo Brandao / Unsplash.

And the springtime, after the long winter. The birds are giving off information, each tweeting like a whistle on a stick. We have them in the gardens inside us.

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It Keeps Me Seeking: The invitation from science, philosophy and religion

21 February 2019 | by Reg Naulty

Close-up of the cover of 'It Keeps Me Seeking'. | Courtesy of Oxford University Press.

Andrew Briggs is a physicist, currently working in nanomaterials at the University of Oxford. Andrew Steane is also a physics professor at Oxford. Hans Halvorson is a professor at Princeton. The latter’s doctoral thesis was about the foundations of quantum physics, and he spent a year in the Experimental...

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Springsteen on Broadway

07 February 2019 | by Teresa Parker

Bruce Springsteen. | Rob DeMartin/Courtesy of the artist.

‘What canst thou say… what thou speakest is it inwardly from God?’ If George Fox put this question to Bruce Springsteen, he would say ‘I took my fun very seriously, it is my service, it is my long and noisy prayer’. In this stage show he tells this story, interspersed...

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Caroline, or Change

07 February 2019 | by Laura Shipler Chico

Sharon D Clarke as Caroline. | Helen Maybanks/Playhouse Theatre.

The first thing to reach you is Sharon D Clarke’s voice. In a slow moving first number her rich, emotion-laced singing keeps you watching. She plays Caroline, a domestic worker in 1963 Louisiana, the year John F Kennedy is shot. Working in a hot, stuffy basement for a liberal white...

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‘The Sacred Art of Joking’, by James Cary

FREE 07 February 2019 | by Rosie Carnall

At the Greenbelt Festival last year, I wrote and performed ‘Spot the Quaker’. Billed as ‘a cross between stand-up comedy and a history lecture’, I was commissioned to make people laugh while informing them about who Quakers really are. The thinking was that a Quaker doing stand-up is a good...

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