Tag Archives: saints
Mother Marianne Cope is elevated to sainthood after second miracle.

Spiritual Surf: 10 reasons to feel awesome about 2012

Political activists on both the left and right project dark times ahead. We present a contrarian upside, spiritually-speaking:

 1.  You can start the year by seeing the Dalai Lama, live (Dateline: Bodh Gaya, India)

2.  The world will have more saints in 2012 (Dateline: Vatican City)

3. The Mayans, the New Agers and the movie were wrong: Why the world did not end on Dec. 21, 2012

4.  The world economy ain’t so bad, after all (Global Insight, the world’s largest economic forecaster)

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An antique prayer for anxious times

An antique prayer for anxious times

Laid-off, foreclosed, going broke, ill, stressed, lonely or sad? The Novena to St. Jude is tailor-made for times of troubles

BY SOUL’S CODE — Call it a Catholic meditation. Call it a koan of loving kindness. In the 19th century, the Novena to “the forgotten saint” Jude was known as a prayer for desperate cases, or when a miracle is needed. It now seems perfectly scripted for this century.

With almost one fifth of the U. S. workforce unemployed or under-employed — and five million Americans losing their jobless benefits between Thanksgiving, 2010 and March, 2011 — is it any wonder that a new study estimates that one-fifth of the population of the last ‘superpower’ suffered from a mental illness last year?

So if you’re feeling in any way left out at the turn of this new year and new decade, we reproduce the Novena to St. Jude below as a spiritual prescription.

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Spiritual Surf: Sundance takes down Mormons; Kitty Kelley takes down Oprah; Tu Beshevat (the tree of life) and St. Paul

8: The Mormon Proposition, a movie on spiritual politics

Utah not only hosts the annual Sundance Film Festival; in the 2010 edition of the film fest, the state’s (unofficial) church has a starring role in the line-up of movies.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is taken down in a documentary about the 2008 initiative that successfully banned gay marriage in California.

Another irony: the film, 8: The Mormon Proposition, is directed by a former Mormon. It details the counter-revolutionary intervention Mormons poured into passing Proposition 8.

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Spiritual Surf: Brittany Murphy, Auschwitz, Pius XII, Winter Solstice, Justin Timberlake

Brittany Murphy?! Yes, sweet and innocent and apparently-addicted Brittany Murphy

2009 just had its 2008 moment, in the sense of the loss of an ingenue who actually had talent, not just an external skin that God had smiled upon. Last year, it was Heath Ledger. In the days before the last Christmas of this decade: Brittany Murphy.

She played the straight girl to Alicia Sliverstone in the timeless hit, Clueless, an upscale L.A. re-telling of the Jane Austen novel, Emma.  Brittany Murphy also earned a following in a movie called Sin City, and co-starred alongside Winona Ryder and Angelina Jolie in Girl, Interrupted, and with that weird guy in 8 Mile.

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What’s less fun than telling your kids at the mall that Santa Claus doesn’t exist?

Answer: the real Santa was a Byzantine monk. Yup, Old Saint Nick evolved from a bishop in present-day Turkey who treated opponents harshly but championed the cause of the powerless

BY KOHL GLAU — Santa Claus’ real story begins nearly 1,700 years ago as the powerful Roman empire was quickly becoming Christian. He lived in a moderate Mediterranean climate, opposed Church-branded heretics, financially supported the poor, built churches, and performed miracles.

In other words, the historical St. Nick is a far more spiritual figure than the folkoric Santa Claus who lives near the North Pole, receives letters from children, rides in a reindeer-drawn sleigh, and deliversgifts on Christmas Eve. How did this commercial Santa evolve? Who was the original? Is he even someone on whose knee you’d want to seat your child?

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Spiritual Surf: James Arthur Ray, celebrity Buddhists, Anglicans and Catholics, Thailand’s Diwali

Road to Enlightenment: No sweat?

Those who attended the now infamous sweat lodge ceremony of James Arthur Ray (including the three who died) paid $10,000 a head for the experience of being deprived of food and sleep.  Not to mention sweating it out in a small, over-crowded space.  One critic labels this “spiritual masochism,”  an extreme asceticism taking physical privation as essential to spiritual insight, much like Guatama Buddha’s early meditative practices.  Ray is continuing to receive criticism from a variety of spiritual perspectives as more witnesses to the incident speak out.

Athletes sporting Buddhism

Disciplining the mind and body as a Buddhist goal is gaining a wider following among goal scoring athletes in the U.S.  A-Rod, for one, is giving Buddhism a try-out, probably with the influence of Kate Hudson, who was raised Buddhist by her mother Goldie Hawn.  Tiger Woods has openly spoken of Buddhism’s influence on his life, particularly from his mother.  While Buddhist meditation may contribute to the game play of these men, a woman’s influence does not go unnoticed.

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Spiritual Surf: Eckhart Tolle on Michael Jackson, gay marriage and the Book of Common Prayer, and mathematical meditation


According to the spiritual teacher and modern-day mystic, Eckhart Tolle, Michael Jackson was not a successful entertainer so much for his technical virtuosity. Instead, Jackson made a connection with gazillions of people because he was a portal into consciousness and presence. A quote from a rare Tolle lecture, Living a Life of Inner Peace:

You’ll probably laugh but I saw Michael Jackson on TV the other day. Even if you say that he’s strange, he’s weird  — that’s what people say — the moment he goes into the music mode, something takes over. Woosh. Wow. What was that? He actually said that you can’t think, it doesn’t come from thinking. You can learn the externals but not the essence. So the moment he switches into music notes, an energy takes over. It’s beautiful.

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The Top 12 transcendental movies, ever

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