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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Human Skeleton: Same But Different

Human Anatomy: Internally We Are All the Same, Externally We Are All Different

Info courtesy:
  • we are all the same | Tumblr
  • Jamais La Paix, "The essence of beauty is unity in variety." -Felix Mendelssohn:

  • Monday, December 17, 2012

    Christmas Visualization: Metadata

    What is metadata? A Christmas themed exploration. By Bonnie Swoger | December 17, 2012 | Scientific American On the same shelf:
  • Well-formed data: A star for your christmas tree December 16th, 2007
  • Seeing Standards: A Visualization of the Metadata Universe, 06/30/2010 -- Indiana University Libraries have produced a beautiful visualization of metadata standards, comprising what they term “the metadata universe."[source]
  • Seeing Standards: A Visualization of the Metadata Universe - Places & Spaces: Mapping Science
  • 2008 Proc. Int’l Conf. on Dublin Core and Metadata Applications
  • Dublin Core Metadata applied to Websites in Cyber Worship in Multifaith Perspectives
  • Saturday, December 15, 2012

    Nash Papyrus Digitized: Ancient Copy of Ten Commandments Goes Online

    By Stoyan Zaimov , Christian Post Reporter
The Nash Papyrus (MS Or.233) – a copy of the Ten Commandments dating from the second century BCE. The Cambridge University Library in the U.K. has released a copy of the Ten Commandments dating back two millennia in what is one of the oldest known manuscripts from the Old Testament.
    "Cambridge University Library preserves works of great importance to faith traditions and communities around the world," University Librarian Anne Jarvis said in a statement. continue reading
    See also:
  • Cambridge Digital Library
  • Saturday, November 03, 2012

    Mapping the religious wonders of North and South America

    Note: CNN found 8 wonders (8 religious wonders to see in the U.S.), and there may be many more depending on the selection or range or more to emerge in the multifaith mosaic of America. No wonder a comment at CNN "missing are: National Cathedral and the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C." Another comment at Newser: "Compared with the cathedrals one can see in Europe, complete with incredible art, calling these marvels is a bit of a stretch.." Yet another comment at Newser: "The archaic structures are very beautiful, and I've always loved Gothic architecture. there's a GORGEOUS Hindu temple down the street from my house. It looks like a giant sand castle. shown here...i cant believe it didn't make the list: Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, Lilburn, Georgia

    8 Religious Wonders of the American World
    This article originally appeared on CNN. Extract:
    By Marina Csomor – People visit Jerusalem for the rich history, interwoven religious narratives and crumbling holy walls. They visit Europe for ornate churches with painted ceilings and golden trim. They visit India for peace of mind, finding serenity in its carved and colorful temples scattered along the sacred Ganges River.
    But people rarely travel the U.S. in search of such sanctuaries. After all, what religious wisdom could America, a country still in its youth at 236 years old, have to offer?
    Although the country may not have a reputation for religious landmarks, America is home to more than just secular city halls and strip malls. Whether or not you practice a faith, visiting these beautiful and historic U.S. religious spots may provide inspiration.
  • Bahá’í House of Worship in Wilmette, Illinois
  • Hsi Lai Temple in Hacienda Heights, California
  • Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Michigan
  • Memorial Presbyterian Church in St. Augustine, Florida
  • Temple Emanu-El in New York City
  • Palace of Gold in Moundsville, West Virginia
  • Salt Lake Temple in Salt Lake City, Utah
  • St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City continue reading @ or @ Newser

  • 5 Religious Marvels in America, SiliconIndia
    Bangalore: India is globally recognized as the 'Land of Temples' and Indians are known to be immensely fanatic about their religion. Even though America is not so renowned for its religious landmarks, there are few outstanding shrines in the U.S. which draws people from various parts of the world. Here is a list if 5 religious marvels in U.S., as listed by in CNN by Marina Csomor-
  • The Bahai House of Worship
  • Hsi Lai Temple in Hacienda Heights, California
  • Islamic Center of America in Dearborn
  • Memorial Presbyterian Church
  • Salt Lake Temple
    continue reading @ SiliconIndia

  • Graphic : A demographic breakdown of the world of religion image courtesy: Graphic religion

  • Hindu Mandir, Dollard des Ormeaux, Québec -- more here: Québec’s attractions: Religious heritage
  • Swaminarayan Mandir, Toronto
  • Jame Abu Bakr Siddique Masjid, Scarborough
  • Ismaili Jamatkhana and Aga Khan Museum in Toronto (under construction)
  • Ontario Khalsa Darbar Dixie
  • Zen Buddhist Temple, Toronto
  • Notre Dame Basilica, Ottawa; see more Ontario - Religious Sites
  • Much more here: Places of worship in Canada

    South America:
  • The Baha'i temple to be built in Santiago, Chile, will be the first Baha'i house of worship in South America.

    On the same shelf:
  • Design Criteria for Mosques and Islamic Centres, Akel Kahera
  • Houses of Worship: An Identification Guide to the History and Styles of American Religious Architecture, Jeffery W. Howe
  • Deconstructing the American Mosque [ DECONSTRUCTING THE AMERICAN MOSQUE, Akel Ismail Kahera
  • Comprehensive Study of U.S. Mosques, A survey by Hartford Seminary
  • The Global Religious Landscape: A Report on the Size and Distribution of the World’s Major Religious Groups as of 2010 PEW Forum 
  • Saturday, September 22, 2012

    Being Just in the love of the Prophet ~ Innocence of Muslims / Desert Warrior

    Note: This post is continuously updated, modified on 3 Oct., 2012
  • Western defenders of ‘free speech’ need to look in the mirror, October 03, 2012, Toronto Star Haroon Siddiqui
  • The Arbitrary Limits to Freedom of Expression, Abubakar Kasim, Huffington Post, 10/01/2012
  • Why ban Kate’s images, but not Muhammed’s? The record (Kitchener, Waterloo), Sep 21 2012
  • Blasphemy in Islam: The Quran does not prescribe punishment for abusing the Prophet, by Maulana Wahiduddin Khan | Oct 2, 2012, The Times of India
  • Dr. Hamid Slimi discusses how the Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم‎ - Peace be upon him) would have responded to any matter, in times of trials, tribulations, and massive misinformation-- based on a Chapter of the Quran, Kausar (i.e., Surah # 108).

    See also the sequel to the above khutba, "What did this Imam just say about Slander?..."

  • Extract from Sound Vision, Chicago:
    "Let not the hatred of a people swerve you away from justice. Be just, for this is closest to righteousness…” (Quran 5:8). While Muslims love and deeply respect Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, others regularly heap abuse on him. Around the world, and here in the U.S., blogs, television shows, some preachers, commentary, and talking heads regularly insult our beloved Prophet and attack his character in ways that are very painful for Muslims to bear. We need to understand this abuse for what it is: a form of psychological violence intended to hurt and harm. Our response when we encounter such attacks must be to seek God’s forgiveness and respond with what is better: prayers on the Prophet and Duas for him. ... It’s also important to remember to just move on. We cannot allow these attacks to hurt us, for that is their very purpose. It’s also vital to keep in mind that you are limited in your responsibility for what you can do to counter these insults. You don’t control the world, you don’t change hearts. Try your best and then put your trust in Allah. That is all you are required to do. continue reading: Being Just in the love of the Prophet, By Abdul Malik Mujahid

    On the same shelf:
  • Free speech vs. reverence for Muhammad: Can they coexist? -- did you know this CS article? Patrik Jonsson, The Christian Science Monitor
  • Offensive Propaganda: The Aesthetics of an Islamic Response, Khalid's Blog
  • Some Muslims Don't Get It: Freedom of Speech and the Legitimacy of Muslim Protests, Mike Ghouse, Huffington Post
  • Muslims Invited to View Film on Muslim-Christian Relations in USA, By Imam By Habeeb Ali, Toronto
  • Interfaith groups react to anti-Muslim film, condemn violence abroad, By Samer Hijazi, The Arab American News
  • Stop Dehumanizing Muslims! By Abubakar N. Kasim
  • Montreal Muslims react to violence, call for calm and dialogue CTV Montreal
  • Moderate And Hardline Muslims Struggle Within Popular Rage Against Anti-Islam Film And America Huffington Post
  • Here Is the Original Script for Innocence of Muslims (Desert Warrior), Adrian Chen
  • Moderates in West must raise their voices: Haroon Siddiqui, Toronto Star

  • Wednesday, September 05, 2012

    Greetings in your own way: Religious, Secular, and Others

    Extract on Good Morning: This Blog Will Change the World
    Perhaps the different outlooks in question here can be reduced to three different ways of saying "Good morning". Most of us mean it as an expression of good wishes: "I hope you have a good morning". The secular humanist intends it as a prediction: "You will undoubtedly have a good morning, and an even better one tomorrow." The totalitarian dictator makes it a demand: "You will have a good morning."

    Extract from another site: Catholic Online Forum, GOOD MORNING! Oh, and BTW, The Lord be with you...
    There’s also another, more humanistic aspect of this that I find objectionable that goes back to my original post. The greeting, “good morning”, is a generic, often formal or “cold”, greeting and is understood by everyone as such. When you pass someone on the street that you know, but don’t know that well, you often use this greeting. The person to whom the “good morning” is addressed understands that the greeting is generic and formal, so it is understood that it is a nicety and nothing more. It doesn’t matter if the person being greeted is having a horrible day or not.

    However, changing the circumstances turns the nicety into something quite different. Take for example: ... continue reading

    Other tips:
  • Sabah al-khair = Good Morning (response = sabah al-noor). Masaa al-Khair = Good evening (response = masa al-noor);
  • Good morning in Hindi: good morning - सुबह अच्छा (subaha acchā)
  • in Hebrew, "good morning" is "boker tov,"

    On the same shelf:

  • Saturday, August 25, 2012

    Spirituality May Boost Mental Health, University of Missouri researchers

    THURSDA Y, Aug. 23 (HealthDay News)

    Spirituality Correlates to Better Mental Health Regardless of Religion, Say MU Researchers, Aug. 20, 2012
    Story Contact(s):
    Timothy Wall,, 573-882-3346

    COLUMBIA, Mo. – Despite differences in rituals and beliefs among the world’s major religions, spirituality often enhances health regardless of a person’s faith, according to University of Missouri researchers. The MU researchers believe that health care providers could take advantage of this correlation between health – particularly mental health – and spirituality by tailoring treatments and rehabilitation programs to accommodate an individual’s spiritual inclinations.
    Continue reading

    On the same shelf:
  • Meditation Reduces Loneliness -- Yoga reduces stress; now it's known why / UCLA Newsroom
    Extract: Researchers from UCLA and Carnegie Mellon University now report that a simple meditation program lasting just eight weeks reduced loneliness in older adults. They also found that meditation could help reduce inflammation.
  • Sunday, July 01, 2012

    Muslims and Jews finally come together — to defend circumcision, National Post

    Jonathan Kay Jun 27, 2012 – National Post
    And so it has come to pass that after centuries of hate, Muslims and Jews finally have been brought together by the human penis — in particular, the shared desire to chop part of it off.

    This week, a district court in the German city of Cologne ruled that male circumcision of newborn babies is illegal, except for medical reasons — because the practice causes “irreversible damage against the body” that cannot be excused on the basis of religious freedom. The primary effect will be felt among Germany’s Muslims, of whom there are about 4-million. But the country’s 100,000 Jews will be affected as well. Continue reading: Muslims and Jews finally come together

    On the same shelf:
  • Circumcision in news

  • Monday, April 16, 2012

    Three rules of religious understanding -- Thought for the day

    Sharing religious insights with other traditions enriches our own faith, Dow Marmur, Toronto Star Apr 15 2012.

    "The late Krister Stendahl, a famous Swedish bishop and for many years dean of Harvard Divinity School, formulated three rules of religious understanding that seem to have guided the editors of The Jewish Annotated New Testament:
      When you are trying to understand another religion, you should ask the adherents of that religion and not its enemies.
      Don’t compare your best with their worst.
      Leave room for “holy envy,” i.e., recognize elements in other religious traditions that you admire and wish that, in some way, they could be reflected in your own.
    I can think of no better way of turning the proximity of Easter and Passover into a motivation to celebrate these principles all year round."

    Sunday, April 08, 2012

    How Muslims View Easter

    New Yorker 2012-04-06:

    Extract: With Easter on the way, I became curious about what the Koran has to say about the crucifixion. I called an imam I know, Ibrahim Sayar, and we got together over glasses of Turkish tea. Sayar does a lot of interfaith work, much of which involves getting people from different religions together to eat kebabs. In the company of Christians, he said, mentioning the status of Jesus in Islam can be a great icebreaker. “I always tell people, there are millions of Muslims named after Jesus and Mary—we call them Isa and Mariam,” he said. “Nobody names their children after someone they don’t like.” ... more »
    On the same shelf:

    Sunday, March 25, 2012

    Muslim Intra-faith Transactions at Facebook - A quick glimpse

    A Muslim’s Guide to Facebook Arguments (and online ridiculousness in general)

    March 19, 2012 by Dr. O
    [Dr. O blogs at Muslim Medicine, a site that strives to serve only the freshest grade-A certified abiah ḥalāl comedy.]
    ... It's a shame that such incredible tools of spreading knowledge and building enlightening discussions such as Islamic Forums, Message Boards, group E-mail threads, Twitter feeds, and YouTube comment threads instead descend into embarrassing hotbeds of heated fights and countless hours of wasted time. And of all these online mediums, the biggest culprit of all is Facebook.
    Spotting trouble online early on and avoiding it, diffusing it, or negating it is only part of the solution, but it doesn't completely solve the disease we have as judgmental, gossipy, and argumentative folk. Espousing proper Islamic manners of disagreement, etiquette of mutual respect and understanding, and patience with those we don't see eye to eye with is a prophetic legacy that applies even to our online lives, just as much as it does to our dealings in person. 
    continue reading:

    PS. Chadhta Suraj Dheere Dheere - Kawwali - Aziz Nazan
    -- See the original Urdu/Hindi lyrics, here. Translated in English, here

    Sunday, March 04, 2012

    Hacking Religious Websites -- Media Update

    This post is continuously updated. Last update on March 4th, 2012.

  • Anonymous Declares War On Religion, Attacks Church Sites
    Calls religion a sickness to this world, By Zach Walton, Web Pro News and International Business Times
    Anonymous attacks a lot of things that they find wrong with the world: corporations, governments and other groups that they feel threaten the freedom of the people. On Friday, they attacked what may be their most controversial target yet – religion.

    The AnonymousIRC Twitter account announced on Friday three attacks so far on major church Web sites. These aren’t just regular attacks, however, as they have also defaced the Web sites with anti-religion rhetoric and even a video featuring Richard Dawkins set to auto-play so visitors are forced to see it.
    Three Web sites that have been attacked so far are Bethel Outreach International Church, the Charlotte International Church, and Crossfire Ministries. All three religious organizations are based in and around Charlotte, North Carolina. /
  • Does Anonymous’s Friday Routine Make Hacking Seem Dull? By Joe Coscarelli N Y Times magazine
  • Anatomy of an Anonymous hack attack NICOLE PERLROTH and JOHN MARKOFF, Sydney Morning Herald
    SAN FRANCISCO: The elusive hacker movement known as Anonymous has carried out internet attacks on well-known organisations like Sony and PBS. In August, the group went after its most prominent target yet: the Vatican.
  • Calgary street preacher claims church website attacked by Anonymous hacktivists
    Posted by Emily Leedham, OpenFile
  • In Attack on Vatican Web Site, a Glimpse of Hackers' Tactics‎, New York Times,
    "What set this attack apart from others is it had a clear timeline and evolution," said Amichai Shulman, Imperva's technology chief.

  • Anonymous Leaves Clues In Failed Vatican Attack‎, Information Week

  • Westboro Baptist Church websites attacked and shut down
    That both The Jester and Anonymous attacked Anit-Gay Westboro Baptist Church websites ( this week represents a very strange convergence, and the prospect that two highly active hacktivist camps might find more common ground is tantalizing to say the least...
  • Thursday, March 01, 2012

    Inter-faith harmony between societies stressed

    The Punjab University’s English Department (Language and Literature) on Sunday arranged a lecture on inter-faith harmony by world-acclaimed Pakistani-American novelist Nafisa Haji at the Prof Sirajuddin Library.
    In her lecture, as part of promoting inter-faith harmony among cultures, Nafisa Haji highlighted the importance of inter-faith harmony between various religions, cultures and societies in the contemporary world. She based her discussion on her second novel, The Sweetness of Tears, which embraces inter-faith, intra-faith, inter-cultural, inter-generational and inter-continental dialogue at its finest.
    Nafisa told the participants how her novel depicted Jo March, her protagonist, on an unlikely quest across boundaries of language and faith, through chasm of sectarian divides in the Muslim world, against the backdrop of the war on terror, from California to Chicago, Pakistan to Iraq. A large number of students attended the lecture -- Source: Daily Times; Nafisa Haji's website

    On the same shelf:

  • Book reviews of Sweetness of Tears: Publishers Weekly 4/25/2011, Vol. 258 Issue 17, p113-114; Booklist June 1, 2011, v107:19-20, p38;

  • What others say: "The Sweetness of Tears is a character-driven novel that is structured as a series of interwoven life-stories..." by TChris @; The overall message of The Sweetness of Tears is one of peace and compassion, by skrishna @; "Haij does a wonderful job of creating this diverse family though which we see the effects being in the military has had on multiple generations, the effects of parents who are missing or absent and through one family the we are shown views of the middle east from those who lived there and left, those who remain and those who came there because of a war not fully aware of the connection they already with this region." by Rebecca @

  •  Discussion-Based Teaching in the Religion Classroom
  • Sunday, February 12, 2012

    Happiness and the Pursuit of Happiness in faith-based context

    The following event also discussed Thomas Jefferson's approach to happiness...

  • Center for the Study of Law & Religion's (CSLR) Summit on Happiness in news


    On the same shelf:

  • Thursday, January 12, 2012

    The Missionary Church of Kopimism—as in, "copy-me-ism" - File Sharing Is Now an Official Religion In Sweden

    Extracts from news sites:
  • Welcome to the missionary church of kopimism. The swedish Constitution Act, Chapter 2. § 1 states that every citizen is against the government guaranteed freedom of ...
  • File sharing Is Not a Crime--It's an Official Religion
  • Legal Ramifications Of File-Sharing Now Being Religious ...
  • Piracy Becomes a Religion in Sweden - Missionary Church of Kopimism Approved by Authorities-1
  • The Missionary Church of Kopimism—as in, "copy-me-ism"—has sought official status in Sweden since 2010, and it's finally won the battle...
  • New Yorker on new Pirate Bay religion, the Missionary Churc
  • Culture Desk: The First Church of Pirate Bay : The New Yorker

    On the same shelf:
  • A Guide to Buddhist Memorial Service for lost information, Daioh Temple, Kyoto, Japan (Anonymous) in Cyber Worship in Multifaith Perspectives (2006)

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