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Barack and Michelle Obama

Spiritual IQ Quiz: 9 questions about President Barack Obama’s inner life

What does the 44th President, his family and friends really believe in — that is, beyond politics?

BY SOUL’S CODE — Barack Obama is the personification of this site’s meme, “spiritual but not religious.”

On matter’s of faith, it’s what makes it so easy for pundits to spin his story from both the fundamentalist right and the agnostic left.

Exhibit: A documentary released during the 2012 presidential election cycle, 2016: Obama’s America (links to free streaming here), suggested that our 44th president is an anti-Christian, anti-colonialist.

From the left: Liberal comedian and million-dollar Obama donor, Bill Maher, routinely says he hopes the prez is lying when he espouses his Christian credentials.

Test your spiritual knowledge about our president by clicking on the multiple-choice answers below:

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The Origin of Species

Spiritual IQ Quiz: Is the ‘genius gene’ good for your health?

From Stephen Hawking to Steve Jobs, big minds have changed your life. The saying goes that theses geniuses are born with a good-luck gene . . . or are they?

SOUL’S CODE — Every parent in America wants their kid to be the next gal or guy who changes the world.

But some of the people who actually did change our lives led extremely painful lives themselves, beyond their controllable lifestyle choices.

So we ask: Would you wish the genius gene upon your kids, or just as well leave that DNA alone?

Click on the radio buttons below to see what the likes of Oprah, Arthur Schopenhauer and Obama share in common — or not:

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newmoon

Soul’s Code Spiritual IQ Quiz: The Vampire meme and HBO’s True Blood

From Tom Cruise and Kirsten Dunst in Interview with a Vampire to True Blood on HBO, the vampire archetype has sucked us all in. Why?

The story of parasitic blood-suckers began in the antique Persian age but it wasn’t until the 19th century that the term “vampire” became a mass-media meme. In three words: Bram Stoker’s, Dracula (1897).

Dracula first appeared on the big screen in the 1909 silent movie, Vampire of the Coast. Since then, this mythic figure has fascinated the world by refracting the shadow — speaking Jungian — of the male psyche.

Click on the radio buttons below for a spiritual analysis of this fundamental male way of being:

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Mitt Romney pledge

Spiritual IQ Quiz: 9 Mormon things that Mitt Romney believes

SOUL’S CODE — On the eve of Willard Mitt Romney’s lock on the Republican presidential nomination, a fellow Mormon and U.S. Senator from Utah (Orrin Hatch) claimed that President Obama’s campaign would use Mitt’s “religion” against him.

But is Mormonism a real religion? In fact, what makes a religion?

One common denominator of the world’s five great faiths is that each was inspired by a figure who achieved enlightenment, or some type of transcendental mental state.

Christians have Christ, Buddhists have the Buddha . . . But the father of the Mormons, Joseph Smith, seems to have simply been mental.

Disagree? See how much you know by clicking the radio buttons below:

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stevejobs

Steve Jobs’ final utterance, and other famous (spiritual) last words

Who said the most spiritual last words ever? Steve Jobs or Gandhi?

SPIRITUAL IQ QUIZ —  ”Oh wow. Oh wow. Oh wow.”

Those, reportedly, were the last words that Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs ever uttered. While Jobs may be best known as a capitalist and a geek, it was his spiritual side that made his products great from the inside out.

Many of us finally get religion at long last when the prospect of meeting our maker looms. Others, not so much.

Click on the radio buttons below to see if you can match the quotations of famous (spiritual) last words to the correct spiritual seeker:

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lincoln

Election year special: The Republican Soul

SPIRITUAL IQ QUIZ — It’s once again time to elect the leader of the Free World. Or in the words of the Tea Party, it’s time to know thy enemy — beat down your enemy, and then pray for your enemy.

Hell, maybe some of us are sleeping with the enemy. (“Come on down, James Carville”).

Or maybe you don’t think of Republicans as enemies at all. Maybe you’ve transcended politics as an instrument of behavioral change.

Click on the radio buttons below to drill-down into the way that the candidates in the Republican presidential primary connect with the force, so to speak.

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iStock_000016632989XSmall

Michael Jackson or Martin Luther: Who had more soul?

SPIRITUAL IQ QUIZ: Scoring soul, musically-speaking

BY SOUL’S CODE — Music. Spirituality. They go together like peanut butter and jelly. But how much do you really know about the spiritual lives of your favorite musicians, or the musical lives of the spiritual leaders who shaped our world?

Modern music came to us from the spiritual — or more precisely, the monastic. Gregorian Chants, sung in chorus by monks as a series of meditative Om’s in the High Middle Ages, inspired the creation of written music and what we now call musical notation.

Click on the radio buttons below to test the depth of your soul, musically-speaking:

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santa

Santa Claus: International man of mystery

SPIRITUAL IQ QUIZ — He’s big. He’s hairy. He’s said to tear through the night sky accompanied by magical reindeer. Santa Claus makes a truly weird symbol of conspicuous consumption. Maybe that’s because he’s a figure whose spiritual roots sit deeper than today’s commercial culture.

Santa as we know him today symbolizes holiday cheer, Christian charity, and, yes, maybe more than just a little bit of pagan wildness. Little wonder this mischievous elf has been shunned by Christians, banned by secularists, and viewed with suspicion by purists of all sorts.

As he keeps sliding down the chimney into our culture, click on the radio buttons below to see how much you know about the global poster-boy for Christmas.

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iphone-4s-siri

The spiritual life of Siri (as in the new iPhone, not Tom Cruise’s kid)

Siri, is the intelligent agent embedded in the latest iPhone. She will tell you the meaning of life, the universe — and God knows what

SPIRITUAL IQ QUIZ — If she’s in the right mood, Siri, the intelligent agent embedded in the latest iPhone, will tell ask you the meaning of life, the universe, and everything (the answer, of course, is always the number ‘42’).

Will artificial machines do a ‘Terminator: Judgement Day’ on us? Or will our machinery of thought help mankind sustain a harmonic code with the universe?

We better hurry up and figure it out, because Siris shows that machines are becoming inexorably more intuitive. The big question: will they ever become truly spiritual, too? Test your spiritual IQ — and Siri — using the radio buttons below:

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jobs-1982

The secret spiritual life of Steve Jobs

SOUL’S CODE SPIRITUAL IQ QUIZ — Steve Jobs was a genius with a dark side. He humiliated subordinates in front of others. His management style included  playing mind games on his own people like waking them up in the middle of the night at home to harangue them. He even created an espionage division inside of Apple that would have made famous paranoids like Richard Nixon and his White House ‘plumbers’ wilt with shame.

But this contradictory and relentless man was also possessed by deep spiritual yearnings from a young age. We honor Steve’s spiritual side — and invite you to test your spiritual IQ with the clickable multiple-choice questions below about some facts of Jobs’ life that Apple p.r. rarely publicized. May his soul be sanctified:

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