Monday, December 21, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Also in case you did not know I have started a facebook group as a precursor to this center, so if you are interested you can also check this out on facebook groups under "New Media, Religion and Digital Culture"
Monday, December 14, 2009
Saturday, November 28, 2009
A doctoral research fellowship is being advertised at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages (IKOS), University of Oslo for an individual interested in studying new media in Asia and/or the Middle East, and an interested in religion is one of the possible areas of specialization they are looking for. Applications are due 15 Dec 2009. Here is the scoop:
The successful candidate is expected to study the use of new media and communication technologies (including the Internet, satellite TV, and mobile phones) in Asia and/or the Middle East and their impact in the social, political, religious and/or cultural domains. The fellowship is open to projects from a wide range of disciplinary and methodological approaches to the study of new media. Comparative and/or multidisciplinary projects will be considered positively. Projects grounded in fieldwork in the region will be considered favourably. It is expected that the candidate analyzes primarily data in one or several of the region's languages. Candidates must therefore demonstrate advanced active skills in at least one relevant Asian and/or Middle Eastern language.
For more info contact the Research director at IKOS: Rune Svarverud, tel: + 47 22 85 69 82, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Research administration IKOS: Cecilie Lilleheil, tel: + 47 22 84 40 47, e-mail: email@example.com.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Sunday, November 15, 2009
The lecture to be given by yours truly (Heidi Campbell) as the Wednesday 25 November 7pm at Vaughan Park Anglican Retreat Centre. This will be a culmination of my musings and research as one of Vaughan Park's Distinguished Academic Visitors for 2009. While at Vaughan Park I have been working working on a book project about how new media technologies raise important theological and ethical issues and how different forms ofreligious authority are being re-shaped and influenced by Internet use, especially within the Anglican tradition. Here is the talk's description:
In the past two decades significant changes have occurred affecting relationships with technology. Subtle shifts have occurred in the way religion is practiced and perceived in the Western World. This presentation looks at:
• how these changes are reflected in the practice of religion online
• what they have to tell us about the future of religious culture
• what a theology of new media might look like in order to address these issues.
An indication of attendance is appreciated: phone 09 473 2600, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Dr. Heidi Campbell, Texas A&M University, will deliver an Open Lecture for the Department of Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Otago. The talk is entitled 'When Religion Meets New Media: Considering the Religious-Social Shaping of Technology' and is based on work from her forthcoming book When Religion Meets New Media (Routledge, March 2010) on how religious communities negotiate their use of new. Please come along on Monday 16th November at 5.10pm. The lecture will be held in St David Seminar Room 2. Anyone who finds themselves in the South Island of NZ is most welcome to come along!
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
The deadline for applications is December 15, 2009.
Monday, November 02, 2009
Sunday, November 01, 2009
Guest Editors: Heidi Campbell & Mia Løvheim
In the initial waves of religion and internet research focus was often placed on how the internet would drastically change religious practice and ideology, due to growth of religious communities online and integration of religious rituals and practices into digital environments. Much attention was given to the novel uses and trends such as those seen in New Religious Movements online where once fringe or secretive religious groups were given a public platform making them more visible. Focus was also placed on how mainstream religions, such as Christianity and Islam, were appropriating to new media technologies or critiquing internet use and with a particular focus on the United states and Western Europe. As the internet has become increasingly embedded in the everyday lives of many researchers attention is now being drawn to the connection between online and offline religious practice, structures and belief. Furthermore, the rise of new software and models of internet communication, often referred to as Web 2.0, has created a heightened interest in issues of user lead content creation and web based social interaction. At the heart of these developments is an important issue, considering to what degree spiritual practices online are transformative or to what extent they reflect larger changes in religious culture and institutions offline. This special issue of Information, Communication and Society seeks to explore this area by considering what we think we know about the relationship between online and offline religion and what issues are still are in need of more detailed investigation.
Aims and Scope:
In particular this special issues aims to explore the relationship between online and offline forms of religious practice and community. Key questions include:
- What is truly unique about the performance of religion online?
- How is the practice and conception of religion online connected to offline practices, communities and institutions?
- In what ways does religion online reflect trends seen offline in religious culture and practice?
- How do these transformations connect with issues of globalization and glocalization?
Possible topics may include (but are not limited to):
- The interactions between online communities and offline religious institutions
- How participants in online religious activities frame their involvement in offline religious groups - Responses of offline religious authorities to religious manifestations and practices online from their community or tradition
- Religious organizations and/or denominations use of the internet, or debates regarding official policy towards and new media use
- Attempts of diasporic communities to connect with their faith tradition and sacred sites via the Internet
- Theoretical work that links research on contemporary religious practice to online religion, i.e. the relationship between internet use and everyday religion, the role of emotions in religious internet use
- How religious actors deal with questions of time, space and information management in online and offline society
- How Virtual worlds and computer games seek to present or re-present "sacred space"
Please submit a 300-500 word abstract to the guest editors as an e-mail attachment to email@example.com no later than 10 February 2010. The four best abstracts will also be submitted as a panel for consideration at the International Media, Religion and Culture Conference to be held in Toronto, Canada (9-13 August 2010). Please include full contact information and a biographical note (up to 75 words) on each of the authors and indicate whether you wish to be considered for the MRC panel submission.
Authors of accepted abstracts will be notified by 6 March 2010 and will then be invited to submit a full paper to the guest editors. Final manuscripts should be no more than 8,000 words, including notes and references, conform to APA style, and submitted by 20 August 2010. Please note all papers will be subject to anonymous peer review following submission.
10 February 2010: Deadline for abstract submission
6 March 2010: Announcement of results and full paper invitations
9-13 August: MRC Conference
20 August 2010: Submission of full papers
October 2011: Publication of special issue
For Inquiries, abstracts, or submission of full papers should be addressed to:
Assistant Professor of Communication
Department of Communication
Texas A&M University
Bolton 102, 4234 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The abundance of varied phenomena which reflect contemporary spiritualities worldwide and especially in Israel, is highly impressive. These phenomena draw increasing academic attention by a large number of researchers from various disciplines including, Religious studies, Philosophy, Judaism, Anthropology, Psychology, Social work, Sociology, and Political sciences.
A comparative and interdisciplinary consideration of the different facets of contemporary spiritualities can contribute to the understanding of these phenomena. This is the rationale for the 2nd Israeli Conference for the Study of Contemporary Spiritualities. We invite researchers and graduate students from different disciplines to submit proposals for papers or panels. The conference will include lectures both in Hebrew and in English.
Proposals for lectures should include: Name, academic status (Graduate Student, Assistant professor, etc.), academic institution (or a different affiliation), E-mail address, abstract (350-500 words) and a list of 10 references.
Proposals for Panels should include: Name, academic affiliation, 3-4 abstracts of lectures according to the format above, panel's rationale (50-100 words) and a proposed chair
Deadline for Submissions November 20, 2009 . Responses will be sent via E-mail until January 10, 2010. Send submissions via Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org for Pninit Russo-Netzer, Conference Coordinator. Address inquiries to this email too.
Monday, October 26, 2009
Julie Hamilton founder and editor-in-chief of Omigoddess!. In our interview we explored debates over the authenticity of religious community online and case studies from my forthcoming book about the similarities and difference in Jewish, Muslim and Christian uses of the internet. Let me know what you think about my observations.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
If there are others out there researching these issues let me know.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Tuesday, October 06, 2009
Dr Campbell is an Assistant Professor at Texas A&M University and one of the world's leading scholars in religion and online media. Her research has taken her from inner urban life in Glasgow through mainstream churches in Auckland to where religion, history and politics collide in Israel. Heidi's teaching and research centres on the social shaping of technology,rhetoric of new media, and themes related to the intersection of media, religion and culture, with a special interest in the internet and mobil ephones. She has written a book Exploring Religious Community Online: We are one in the network looking at how members of online religious communities connect their online and offline social-religious networks.
Her current research is an investigation of Jewish, Muslim & Christian communities 'historic perceptions and contemporary use of media technologies, forthcoming as a text When Religion Meets New Media.For those who have any interest in how online technology is shaping how people are seeing and interacting with the world, or want to know how creative uses of new technologies are making new opportunities for people to connect, grow and learn, this is a chance to have questions explored.
Heidi is also keen to hear stories of Australians who have tried out religion on the Internet, whether the experience is good or bad or somewhere in between. Come along and share with her what the 21st century Australian spirit sounds and smells like.
Date: Monday 12 October 2009. 7pm.
Venue: Pireaus Blues Restaurant, 310 Brunswick St Fitzroy (Melbourne).Sit-down dinner, a la carte (Main prices from $15 to $30).
RSVP: Friday 9 October to email@example.com
Sunday, October 04, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
If you are interested in this topic I recommend also checking out:
P.H. Cheong & J.P.H. Poon (2009) Weaving Webs of Faith: Examining Internet Use and Religious Communication Among Chinese Protestant Transmigrants, Journal of International & Intercultural Communication, 2(3), pp. 189-207.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Sunday, September 20, 2009
So far I have come up with an older article on the Theology of PacMan and an article on Religious education and the challenge of computer games. Also there is book forthcoming entitled Halos & Avatars: Playing (Video) Games with God to be published by Westminster John Knox, 2010) which to my knowledge will be the first collection of articles on religion and video games (though I am open to correction if someone else knows of another on the subject). The book looks at variety of issues related to theological and psychological issues of gaming for religious culture. I have also contributed a chapter offering a narrative analysis of different genre's of islamogaming.
So if others out there know of articles, chapters or books on Religion and Video Games I would love to hear about it!
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
While he argues some interesting and valid points about the limits of mediated church experiences and that online communities can not fully replace embodied care and interaction he seems to assume that offline churches always provide the social accountability and garner the spiritual investment of its members. He claims the virtual ecclesia is lacking because it is missing: the sacrament, discipline and accountability, service and equipping. However from my 13 years of research I would say that while it is not a given, that these aspects can be and are being integrated into many religious communities online. It is what people bring to the table and their level of creativity and investment online or offline that makes a gathering true ecclesia or not. The article is definitely worth a read and would like to hear others thoughts.
Also check out Shane Hipps interview at the National Pastor's Convention in San Diego (Feb 2009) discussing his views of "virtual community" and opinions on Second Life Church.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Friday, September 04, 2009
Mark spoke on the topic of Monitor Mediated Ministry: Being the Church in the Digital Space which explored his own experience in using Second Life and Facebook to do church. He argued that often offline church focuses on an invitational of trying to get people into the pews while in the online context there is a shift to an incarnational strategy that focuses on bringing faith into to where people are at...in this case the internet.
Tim Bulkley spoke on Digital Audio and Reading the Bible Online and explored how digital and communication technology changes our engagement with text and information. He argued that digital culture changes our relationship with the Bible when it is presented in hypertext or especially new visual or oral mediums. He described his work with the PodBible project and his work developing Vernacular resources for church leaders so that new media technologies empower new methods of translation and engagement.
Yours truly spoke about the offline implications of online religious community as the rise of online community reflects changes in larger society's conception and practice of community. I also addressed how the internet challenges traditional institutions conceptions and practices of church as it offers alternative means of spiritual engagement and connection
Stephen Garner concluded the day talking about Who do you day I am? Digital authenticity, ethics and community. He spoke about the long tradition in Christianity of tension between spiritual and physical spaces and conceptions, and how the internet can highlight these supposed Gnostic tendency as it frees users from the constraints of the body. The result is a blurred space where question of what it means to be authentic online are debated. He raised some important ethical points summed up by a quoted from Ron Cole Turner: "Technology for all its good is constantly on the edge of sin, exploitation and greed, it is after human technology beset by our weakness".
So overall it was a great way to spend a morning in Auckland!
Tuesday, September 01, 2009
[Note: the transcript of my interview is a bit rough with some mistakes, but for the most-part communicate my intent.]
Monday, August 31, 2009
The event will cover the questions:
-How do the Christian faith and the Internet impact upon each other?
- What place might the Bible have in our digital world?
Come and join us as our panel of expert speakers engage with these topics and others relating to issues of faith in the digital world.
Mark Brown CEO, Bible Society New Zealand & founder Anglican Cathedral in Second Life.
Stephen Garner Lecturer in Theology and Popular Culture, School of Theology, University of Auckland.
Heidi Campbell Assistant Professor, Dept. of Communication, Texas A&M University & author of Exploring Religious Community Online.
Tim Bulkeley Lecturer in Old Testament, Carey Baptist College & developer of the Amos Hypertext Commentary & podBible projects.
Saturday 5 September 2009 9am-12pm OGGB4 Lecture Theatre, Level 0, Owen G Glenn Building, Grafton Road, The University of Auckland Please register your attendance by Wednesday 2 September, with firstname.lastname@example.org Cost $5 (morning tea provided)
FYI--I will be spending the semester as Distinguished Academic Visitor in NZ at the Vaughn Park Retreat Center. For more details click here.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Saturday, August 01, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Tuesday, July 07, 2009
Thursday, July 02, 2009
First the walkman freed music listening from being engage with in a certain place or space, you could listen to music on the bus, while going for a jog as easily as sitting in front of a larger stereo system. This mean how we consume media has changed.
Second the walkman encouraged a new level of individualization, I can listen to my music when I want not matter what others around me are doing. This has marked a greater sense of empowerment in individuals being able to control the media messages they want to receive.
Third music consumption no longer became a static practice, it was now mobile. That means where media was consumed was freed to a new level. This also started a blurring of the public and private as media device allowed for personal engagement in public space. However, those individual, mobile practices have repercussions for the public. Early walkman were not necessarily personal as you could often hear the sounds being played seep through the head phones. Similar to how people get forced into transgressing the space of a private phone conversation when someone next to them is talking loudly into their cell phones.
So in my way of thinking the walkman in many ways set the stage for our new digital media landscape and media consumer current practices. It also raises some concerns of how our media devices are culturing human behavior.
For the official version of the story check out the interview online.
Wednesday, June 03, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
According to a review in Publishers's weekly Bunt suggests, "..that Muslims have an “open-source” educational legacy. This open-source nature of Islamic theology inclines Muslims, possible more than other faith adherents, towards an online “rewiring” of their faith." I haven't read the book yet myself but it promises to be an important contribution for those studying Islam online. Bunt's blog Virtually Islamic provides a great source for info on the book and other info about Islam online, and he also he has an online bibliography for his book which is well worth checking out.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Time: May 22, 2009 from 8am to 9:30am
Location: Second Life
Organized By: Beth Davies-Stofka Event
Description:Religion in Virtual Worlds Study Group
The Religion in Virtual Worlds Study Group meets on the 3rd Friday of the month at 8:00 AM Second Life time.The May meeting will take place on May 22nd (in order to avoid overlap with end-of-semester duties). The agenda is Buddhist Death in Second Life
Dr. Beth Davies-Stofka presents the educational goals and strategies behind the Second Life Bardo Game. Designed by members of the Center for EduPunx, the Second Life Bardo Game creates the "in between" state of the dead person as described in the Tibetan Book of the Dead, challenging the player to find her way to enlightenment.There are a few design issues that we need help resolving, and we'll present those to the group.
Discussion: would you like to use this game in your classroom? What questions or considerations concern you? How can we help?Religion in Virtual Worlds Study Group meetings normally last an hour and a half, but feel free to come late and leave early!
All are welcome. All meetings are held on the Front Range Island. Front Range Island is private, so please RSVP in advance with your avatar name to email@example.com.
Thanks, and we look forward to seeing you on May 22nd!
Next meeting: June 19. Agenda will be set at the May meeting.
Thursday, May 07, 2009
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
Jackson LA et al (2009). Gender, race and morality in the virtual world and its relationship to morality in the real world. Sex Roles DOI 10.1007/s11199-009-9589-5
Thursday, April 30, 2009
One of the core themes is the "Church in Cyberspace." In this section they welcomes papers examining the relationship between church, mission and the new media, especially the Internet. How do the new media affect the ways in which the church operates? What impact do secularization, globalization and multireligiosity have on the church in cyberspace? Does the Internet offer new alternatives to traditional approaches to mission? Can church and congregational communities be built in cyberspace? If you are interested in more information contact, Peter Fischer-Nielsen at firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
This coming Sunday some evangelical churches will highlight the potential of the Internet , by holding an 'Internet Evangelism Day'. The organizers see that the Web is a God-given tool for outreach, and provides help for Christians to use it effectively. They encourage
churches to build a presentation into their services or other activities on or near that day. Their website also serves as a year-round online resource guide with many ideas for web outreach and strategy . Internet Evangelism Day also offers an online self-assessment questionnaire, enabling churches to enhance their websites to reach out into the community. "Your church website is a 'shop window' for your community," says IE Day coordinator Tony Whittaker. The questionnaire creates a free evaluation report to highlight areas of a site that can be developed.
Monday, April 13, 2009
Wednesday, April 08, 2009
I am heading up a research project at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The project measures Christian opinions and participation in online communities.We need your help.
We need respondents to the following survey: http://www.surveygizmo.com/s/112059/ec-involvement-in-online-communities-1
The survey is hosted on a professional online survey service. The survey is anonymous, so your privacy is protected.Participating in the survey is completely voluntary. The benefits of completing the survey are data for present and future research, as well as personal satisfaction. You may also request a copy of the research report once the survey has been completed. Your participation would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for your time.--
Kyong James Cho
Department of Communication
University of Illinois at Chicago
Monday, April 06, 2009
Network Apocalypse: Visions of the End in an Age of Internet Media
This edited collection of work by international scholars would document how Internet communication is creating, adapting, and recreating beliefs about an imminent mass transformation resulting in the end of human history. How are ancient prophetic beliefs faring in our everyday lives as they have become technologized by network communication? How do religious communities sharing these beliefs use the Internet? Are everyday religious believers empowered or disempowered by Internet technologies? Are gender, ethic, and racial divisions being broken down or reinforced? How are text-based prophetic traditions adapting to the more dynamic and fluid understanding of the Word in our digital age?
The answers to these questions are important for scholars from a wide range of disciplines working on questions about how the Internet is changing some of our most powerful and recurring religious beliefs.Each chapter of this book will focus on a specific sample of discourse that features apocalyptic beliefs. Comparative and theoretical chapters are also welcomed. Methods may be quantitative, qualitative, or a combination of both.
Chapter topics might include by are not limited to:Christian, Islamic, Jewish, or other traditional apocalyptic expression online;specific apocalyptic groups using the Internet;online prophecy and/or prayer practices;apocalyptic games, gamers, or gaming;apocalyptic expression in virtual worlds;apocalyptic communication via mobile communication technologies;new apocalyptic religious movements using the Internet;apocalyptic ideas or discourses that rely on theories of technology including concepts of “Gaia-mind,” “singularity,” and etc.
Please submit the following documents via email to Rob Howard (email@example.com) by May 1, 2009:
1) a preliminary title for the proposed chapter
2) a 100-250 word abstract of the proposed chapter
3) a current CV
The successful abstracts will form part of a book proposal submitted in response to a request from Sheffield Phoenix Press for a series titled “The Apocalypse in Popular Culture.” Full texts will be requested at a later date. Sheffield Phoenix Press is an academic press specializing in topics of religion that is seeking to expand its catalog on apocalyptic belief in contemporary society.
Robert Glenn Howard http://rghoward.com/
University of Wisconsin -- Madison
Associate Professor, Department of Communication Arts
Associate Chair, Folklore Program
Friday, April 03, 2009
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Thursday, March 26, 2009
The folks from University of Bremen, the University of Oldenburg and the Jacobs-University (Bremen) have put together an interesting summer school on "How Virtual is reality?" The school is aimed at Master students and PhD candidates interested in doing work and religion and the internet. The course will broach the issue of the relevance of new environments like "Second Life" or "World of Warcraft" for culture and social life with special focus on rituals and religions.
They state that Summer School participants will be able to design and perform research projects on religion in and within Virtual Worlds. I think this sounds like a great program for future religion and internet researchers and only wish something like this had been around when I was a PhD student.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
I wanted to post this interesting Call for Papers for an upcoming conference on the Islam and the Media to be held January 7-10, 2010. It will be hosted by The Center for Media, Religion and Culture in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of Colorado, Boulder.
Here's the info...
The events of September 11, 2001 have unleashed an unprecedented period of global re-thinking of issues in media and religion. Islam has emerged as a major focus of inquiry and debate, but the interaction between contemporary Islam and the media has rarely been addressed.
This conference will thus engage a set of questions on the place of Islam within global, regional, national and local media.If we believe the torrent of popular headlines on Islam today, it seems that only Muslim extremists are talking about their religion, pursuing a project that claims to defend it from “secularized” Western culture. From Bin Laden’s call to jihad to the angry reaction of Muslims to the Danish cartoons of the prophet Muhammad, Muslims are portrayed in the media as irrational followers of a religion adamantly out of step with modernity. In the face of this, and perhaps in order to balance their coverage of Islam, Western journalists, pundits, and others have been asking “where are the moderate Muslims?” But few true moderates have emerged. Instead, some Western media have turned to another extreme: Muslim secularists or “Muslim non-believers”--voices which deserve media attention, but which arguably stand at the opposite fringe, rather than nearer the center of how Islam is lived and understood today.Muslims, both in the Muslim world and in the diaspora, have found themselves compelled to speak for the ‘real’ Islam and explain its relevance in modernity both to themselves and to non-Muslims. This process is at the same time generating divergent discourses that arguably are already coming to challenge the religious authority of clerical Islam. Today, Muslim men and women, young and old, secularists and Islamists, Westerners and Easterners, gay and straight, rappers and comedians, journalists and scholars, bloggers and televangelists, are changing the conventional pathways of religious discourse and disintegrating the old centers of knowledge production within Islam. In fact, Muslims around the world are taking advantage of new media platforms like the Internet and other forms of conventional media like satellite television, music and film to articulate an arguably ‘pure’ or ‘modern’ Islam. These media have become prime discursive spaces in which Islamic knowledge is contested, reinterpreted, and popularly re-mediated.
Given the unprecedented amplification of this inner struggle within Islam, it is imperative to ask questions such as: who speaks for Islam today using what original platforms? Does the pluralization of Muslim voices lead necessarily to innovations in the core of Islamic teachings or is it merely a shift in method to reaffirm a message of orthodoxy? Are these new voices accessible to large numbers of Muslims? And how are contemporary media deployed to facilitate this shift in Islamic knowledge production? Thus, a range of questions dealing with the mediation of Islam and other religions are also coming to the fore.
This international conference will bring together scholars on Islam and contemporary media, media professionals, activists and NGOs to reflect on the implications of these developments.
Papers and panels may address, but should not be limited to, the following topics:
• The representation of Islam in global media
• Images of Islam in Western entertainment media
• Muslim voices in Western media
• Media and the “clash of civilizations”
• Contemporary Islamic media and the transformation of religious knowledge
• The impact of new Muslim media on patterns of religious learning and practice
• The proliferation of Islamic websites and Islamic discourse on the Internet
• The weakening of traditional Islamic institutions
• Articulations of Islam in popular culture
• The intersections of Islam and consumer culture
• The impact of mediated transnational Islam on the Ummah and nation
• The role of Muslim diasporas in the new Islam
• The role of women in shaping the teachings of new Islam
• Muslim minorities’ use of media globally, regionally, and locally
• The impact of new media on social and cultural patterns in Muslim societies
• Representations of contemporary Islam in Muslim and Western media
• New Muslim media, public sphere and democracy
• Islam, globalization, and religious identity
• Contemporary Islamic thought and new mediations of Islamic heritage
•Methodologies: how to study Islam in the media age
•Methodologies: social-scientific, humanistic, and “theological” analyses
• Media and the making of Islamic religious “celebrity”
Confirmed Keynote Speakers
Charles Hirschkind: University of California, Berkeley- author of The Ethical Soundscape: Cassette Sermons and Islamic Counterpublics.
Zarqa Nawaz: filmmaker and writer of the critically-acclaimed TV series A Little Mosque in the Prairie.
Deadline: Please send a 300-word abstract by May 15, 2009 to Nabil Echchaibi at firstname.lastname@example.orgA detailed conference Website will be available shortly.
First, at the website of St Bernards Abbey of Cullman, Alabama you can visit one of six online prayer chapels. By clicking on an candle you can enter request for prayer for yourself or a friend. The name of the person being prayed for then appears under the candle which seems to be lighted and flicker in a virtual wind. It even time burns down over time. I lit one in Christ the King chapel and saw that others had lit candles for prayers for elderly parents, children and friends in distress. So if you feel the urge to light a candle as prayer, check this out.
Another options is a Lenten Online devotional which I signed up for on Ash Wednesday. The daily devotional is written by students, staff and faculty of Goshen College and emailed each morning to subscribers. Each e-devotion offer a short reflection on a scripture portion chosen by the individual author related to their own personal lenten journey which I find quite interesting. They offer this service each Lent and Advent season. For more information check out this year's Lenten devotions.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Guest Editor Roxanne Marcotte is looking for submission on topics such as cyber-theology, cyber-rituals, online religions, cyber-proselytization and cyber-polemics, cyber-pilgrimages, cyber-covens and sanghas, religious blogs, etc. Submission deadline is February 2010. For more information check out CFP or contact the editor directly.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
As a warm-up for the conference I was interviewed on KNPR's State of Nevada radio program for a story on New Media and Religion. Much of the content focused on a conversation on several of my last few blog posts on Tangle/God Tube and my reaction to Bishop Katherine Jefferys Schori statements about disembodied religion via the internet. To hear my opinions check out the forthcoming audio files.
Friday, February 06, 2009
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Monday, January 19, 2009
BISHOP: The reality is Christian communities; faith communities of all sorts need physical proximity of humane being in order to discover each other, in order to grow individually and as a community. We do not do that as well with people who are not in our presence. It is hard to build a faith community in a deep sense on the internet. We deal with caricatures; we deal with perceptions and positions rather than full human beings sitting in our presence.
INTERVIEWER: Although many people point to the Obama campaign and the social networking and the impact it made, in drawing together millions of people in this country, mobilizing them, getting them to vote getting them to knock on doors throughout the country and that would be community engagement that is philosophical engagement.
BISHOP:It is. I think it is at a different level that what is normally though of as a faith community.
INTERVIEWER: How so?
BISHOP: Because it doesn’t involve face-to-face encounter with a human being, individual whom you come to know over months and years with all that person’s gifts and warts. And learning to challenge one another in a faithful sense to grow up into all they can be.
...and later she went one to say...
"it is a hunger for intimate community of the kind that we were talking about the minute ago that is only possible in the physical proximity of other human beings. Some of it can be served on the internet but the incarnate piece is missing."
Upon reflection I both agree and disagree with the Bishop. I agree the in most case physical proximity is the ideal and may more easily facilitate the possibility for intimate community, however in my experience and research physical presence does not necessarily mean that intimacy and care will be achieved in community. I think the incarnational nature is also about what people bring to the table to create the environment and that this can be intentionally built and maintained in a "disembodied" context. I have both studied and experience this online my past 13 years of research.
But what do you think?
Thursday, January 15, 2009
Due to different circumstance the wiki has been move do a new platform. This is a temporary move and I will be looking for another more permanent home for the wiki over this next semester. Just wanted to give you a heads up, hope you find the resources useful!