Earlier this week, The Washington Post‘s religion blog, “On Faith,” posed a question regarding Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff’s controversial tweet following the execution of convicted killer Ronnie Lee Gardner.
Posts Tagged ‘technology’
Tomorrow at New York University’s Institute for Public Knowledge, Erica Robles will present “The Crystal Cathedral Megachurch: Architecting the Rise of Mediated Congregation.” The talk, which runs from 12-2pm, will focus on the confluence of architectural postmodernism and emergent media technologies in the reconfiguration of sacred space under the glittering arches of the American megachurch.
While there has been much discussion at Immanent Frame on the merits and relevance of certain analytical categories for the sociological study of religion, especially “civil religion,” there has not been as much talk of what may be called “technological religion.” Andy Jordan of the the Digits blog at the Wall Street Journal has just authored a post on Apple’s status as a “religion for the creative class” in the wake of this weekend’s long-anticipated release of the iPad.
Mitchell Landsberg, of the Los Angeles Times, reports on a recent Claremont School of Theology conference about how new technologies will affect the future of religion.
Harvard’s “New Technologies and Interdisciplinary Research on Religion,” which Ruth posted on earlier, is coming up on March 12-13 and is open to the public.
Philip Pullella of Reuters reports that, for the Catholic Church’s World Day of Communications, Pope Benedict XVI encouraged clergy to take up the challenge of new media.
John Lardas Modern, an assistant professor of religious studies at Franklin & Marshall College, draws on Beat poets, phrenologists, prison reformers, and Moby-Dick to show why taking technology seriously forces us to think differently about the boundaries of religion. His article “Evangelical Secularism and the Measure of Leviathan” appeared in the December 2008 issue of Church History. His book Haunted Modernity; or, the Metaphysics of Secularism is forthcoming from the University of Chicago Press.
Not long ago, researchers wired up the atheist Richard Dawkins with a helmet that would create magnetic fields partially simulating the brain activity of temporal lobe epilepsy, which they linked to dramatic visionary religious experiences and to less dramatic feelings of sensed presences. It turns out, though, that hooking up a hardboiled atheist to a machine, known as the transcranial magnetic stimulator, produced no such experiences. “It was a great disappointment,” Dawkins related after 40 minutes on the machine. “Though I joked about the possibility, I of course never expected to end up believing in anything supernatural. But I did hope to share some of the feelings experienced by religious mystics when contemplating the mysteries of life and the cosmos.” As my own mind was being massaged with images of Richard Dawkins having his temporal lobes stimulated, an odd notion popped into my head: namely, when it comes to religion, history and culture trump neurology. [...]