The latest on the planned mosque for New York City's Ground Zero, this week in religion, getting to know Tertullian, and more.
The American Center for Law and Justice, a Christian legal group, is urging New York City officials to grant landmark status to a Ground Zero building that could be cleared to make way for a Muslim community center.
According to wire reports, the group believes the current building should be considered a landmark because a piece of one of the hijacked planes on Sept. 11, 2001, fell through its roof.
The Cordoba Initiative, a Muslim outreach group, owns the building and is planning a 13-story center for the site.
According to wire reports, a spokeswoman for the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission said landmark status would not necessarily prevent the Cordoba Initiative from making it an Islamic cultural center.
The commission is set to vote on the status of the building in August.
Week in Religion
- On July 30, 1956, a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress is signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, authorizing “In God We Trust” as the U.S. national motto.
- On Aug. 1, 1944, Anne Frank makes the last entry in her diary.
- On Aug. 4, 70, the Romans destroy the Second Temple in Jerusalem.
Conventional wisdom suggests that older adults are more likely to participate spiritually, and recent research confirmed such thinking. A report gathering data from several studies found two-thirds of small group attendees and house church participants and three-fifths of church volunteers and Sunday school goers were ages 45 and older.
-- Barna Group
“Nirvana: Concept, Imagery, Narrative” by Steven Collins
Offering his own interpretation of key texts, Steven Collins explains the idea of nirvana in a new, accessible way - as a concept, as an image (metaphor), and as an element in the process of narrating both linear and cyclical time.
Exploring nirvana from literary and philosophical perspectives, he argues that it has a specific role: to provide “the sense of an ending” in both the systematic and the narrative thought of the Pali imaginaire.
This book will be essential reading for students of Buddhism, but will also have much to teach anyone concerned with Asia and its religions, or indeed anyone with an interest in the ideas of eternal life or timelessness.
Get to Know … Tertullian
Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus, known as Tertullian (160-220) was an early Christian author from Carthage in the Roman province of Africa.
A prolific author, he produced an extensive work of Latin Christian literature. Many works were written to counteract Gnosticism and other religious doctrines viewed as heresy. Other works were more practical and philosophical.
Tertullian later became a Montanist, whose ideas were at odds with those of the Orthodox Church. This includes the encouragement of ecstatic prophesying and a stronger emphasis on the avoidance of sin and church discipline than in Orthodox Christianity.
Consubstantiation: The belief that the bread and body of Jesus during communion form one substance, and that the wine and blood of Jesus similarly form one substance. – religioustolerance.org
Religion Around the World
Religious makeup of Tajikistan
Sunni Muslim: 85 percent
Shia Muslim: 5 percent
Other: 10 percent
- CIA Factbook
GateHouse News Service