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Subject:Women of the Wall
Time:10:02 am
There is a group in Israel called "Women of the Wall" that organizes a woman's prayer group that meets at the Kotel (the Western Wall) in Jerusalem each month for Rosh Chodesh. They've been doing this for over 20 years. Rosh Chodesh is traditionally a woman's holiday.

Recently, this group has come under increasing attack - both literal and figurative - from radical right-wing haredi groups in Israel. Violent haredis have actually attacked the women for daring to pray at the wall.

And unfortunately, the government is becoming complicit.Collapse )

The upside of this is that if the Jerusalem police think it is so easy to silence or deter Jewish women, they are sadly mistaken. I expect that this kind of action will only swell the ranks of Women of the Wall.
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Current Music:Suzi bint Quatro - "Your imam Won't Like Me"
Current Location:not the penalty box!
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Subject:Washington DC Mosque – Muslim Women Demand End To Sex Segregation Again
Time:09:40 pm
Current Mood:angryangry
http://www.abigmessage.com/washington-dc-mosque-muslim-women-demand-end-to-sex-segregation-again.html
Washington DC Mosque – Muslim Women Demand End To Sex Segregation Again
yessir

Last month, a Muslim woman by the name of Jannah bint Hannah led a group of Muslim women in gatecrashing the main prayer hall of the Islamic Center of Washington to demand an end to sex segregation in mosques in America. That demonstration was broken up by Washington DC police but the Muslim women said they would continue with their struggle on this matter. This week, true to their word, risking arrest, the Muslim women returned to the Islamic Center of Washington to repeat their action and their demand for an end to sex segregation in mosques.

Whereas the February protest managed to gather 20 Muslim women, this time round the demonstrating group consists of 6 Muslim women. According to press reports, this group is led by Fatima Thompson, an American Muslim who converted to the faith 18 years ago.

The 6 Muslim women, with hair covered by headscarves, entered the prayer hall of the Islamic Center of Washington through the main door. They then joined 20 other Muslim men present to pray. The main prayer hall is the domain of male worshippers. Female worshippers have their own prayer room at the side, which is much smaller, the entrance door of which is hidden behind a screen.

What is the purpose of this demonstration? Fatima Thompson explains: “Wooden barriers have to be taken down and women have to be allowed to join, to pray behind the men in the main praying area. That’s our request. We are against gender segregation, against the fact that women are put aside or in a totally different room at the mosque.”

Fatima Thompson added: “The general issue we are pushing is gender segregation and the ramifications it fosters. It’s not healthy, and not reflective of our society here. It’s very reflective of very restrictive, ultra orthodox societies.”

Asra Nomani, a leading Islamic feminist who led a similar protest in West Virginia, said last month: “We have this generation of American Muslim women who are saying ‘look, you want us to go to Harvard, to rise to the highest level of Wall Street firms and you want us to sit where in the mosque?’”

Speaking about this month’s protest, Asra Nomani said: “If you are black in this country they can’t tell you to sit in a corner but if you are a woman they can.”

So how did the protest end? Well, like the way the first protest last month ended. DC police were called in to evict the Muslim women. The imam presiding over the prayer meeting announced: “We are going to wait, because some people came to disturb the prayer, until the police come and take care of this issue.” Then he added: “It’s disgusting. If they are Muslims they have to follow the rules.”

The police came, and promptly ordered the 6 Muslim women out or face arrest. So what did the women do? Well they left alright, but they regathered on the street outside facing the metal gates of the mosque to perform their prayers. One male onlooker offered this hopeful advice to the women: “Build your own mosque.”

Did the women expect to resolve things that day? Jannah bint Hannah who led last month’s protest said: “We may not get to see that in our lifetime but we do that for our daughters.” She added that she would continue to fight for shared prayer space.

But the women were encouraged by a comment made by Bachir Kardoussi, a lecturer in comparative religion at the University of Constantine. He said: “Traditions control Islam at the moment, and that’s not the same as Islam.”

Think about it. Is Bachir Kardoussi correct in saying that Islam that is controlled by traditions is not Islam? If so, is there any branch of Islam that is not influenced by traditions? For that matter, is there any religion in the world that is not influenced by traditions?
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Subject:abortion/faith
Time:05:37 pm
hi guys - Medical Students for Choice at the U of MN has asked me to put together a panel of women who are willing to speak about their abortions in the context of their faith.

I have spoken on panels about my abortion to MSFC several times, and it's always a very friendly venue (also, free lunch.) I think that we do a great deal of good in speaking about this to up-and-coming doctors, allowing them to understand the patient perspective and encouraging them to make abortion available to women.

If there are any Minnesotans who would be willing to speak on the panel, please contact me and let me know.
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Time:09:35 am

Xmas Eve Sermon 2009

I so rarely have complete sermon notes, but I did for Christmas, and I thought I would share them.
Discussion and comments would be most welcome.
(x-posted with my  own journal)


Jesus comes to us...Collapse )
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Subject:Women, and the Old Testament
Time:11:53 pm
Current Mood:contemplativecontemplative


Since this is a community of religious Feminists, I feel more at ease approaching religious topics that I normally would only confide in to my fiance. He had no answers for me, I do not think he quite understands either or rather he just chooses not to focus on the issues I focus on. I love how diverse this community is but how we are all related together in Feminism. This is what allows me to fully relate to those who do not share my beliefs: we are still a common, united community despite our religious differences. As a Feminist, I respect the religious choices of my fellow Feminists: I just need more help in understanding where Feminism fits in, and how it is possible. I do not intend to offend anyone but if I do I promise it is unintentional.

I am just not sure how my words will be taken. Growing up, I was taught very little religion. My mother only did what she could to please the in-laws. We were never really taught about the Bible or anything. I pretty much discovered Christ myself but at the tender age of 12, you do not have a full comprehension of religion-especially if you know little about faith. Not having any adult guidance, I drifted away from the church. I can't remember the exact reasons but in part I felt disappointed in how several 'Christians' I knew could treat other people so harshly or could be so selfish. Of course if you walk your talk then you would have to live by Christ's example to the best of your ability as an imperfect human being.

The few hypocritical or misguided may be a better word Christians I've known are not the stereotype of Christianity (I later realized).  For a long while I felt I agreed with Wiccan beliefs, and practices but over the past year I've swayed from agnosticism to atheism. I won't go into all of that here but I talk a bit about my spiritual crisis in my lj. Stress, my grandmother's declining health, etc played a part in my crisis. Currently, I am agnostic but I've been researching Catholicism. It's caught my current interest. I've always enjoyed learning about differing faiths but I've begun a more serious study into the Catholic faith. I find most intriguing the Saints, and Mother Mary. I have found, surprisingly that there is a strong Feminist streak within Catholicism. I never thought so before (I viewed the Church as patriarchal, etc.

Which it is but in other ways it is not). That aside, while I am enjoying studying the Catholic faith, some of the old prejudices or rather issues I've had with Christianity keep popping up. I have the hardest time understanding how Feminists can find solace, spirituality in religions that have historically promoted a rather negative view of women. I do believe in developing a more intellectual, moderate view but I find it more difficult to do so when certain things have been taught by the religion traditionally, with verses to back these teachings up. I know you can take a different interpretation but some verses are rather to the point, and do not merit a differing view (it's not possible). I want to come to a better understanding of Christianity in particular because my fiance is a Christian. I find the pacifism, nonviolence (unless it's for self-defense), love, charity, etc to be such beautiful teachings of the Church.

My main issue is not so much with Paul (I find a differing interpretation or rather I take the context in which he wrote certain passages) but is rather with the Old Testament. Granted, I have yet to read but only a small amount of the Old Testament so I'm sure my view may not be accurate or is biased, etc. For that I apologize but I'm giving full honesty here in the hopes that someone in this community will be able to clarify things for me or to offer a new view on the Old Testament that I may have yet to hear. I have found enormous difficulty in seeing how Christ is related to the Old Testament as he promoted peace over violence, love over hate, etc from my readings of the NT. I've read the NT in it's entirety. I've always heard the traditional connection between the Old, and the New (Christ), prophecy, etc but that does not explain away to me how a man could preach peace while the Old Testament is filled with violence (to me God either condones violence or not and it is my opinion that life is sacred so I don't feel the Creator would condone violence unless you must defend yourself).

The instances of genocide are morally bothersome to me. Take Jericho for one example. Then I have read so many verses which are very negative about women. One story that in particularly bothers me is the one about Lot, and how he gives up his two virgin daughters to be raped "Do what you see fit" is pretty much what he said. After this he was still viewed honorable enough to be saved from the destruction of the city. To me that is an outrage, and it disturbs me to see how that would go unpunished. It seems in the Old Testament women were treated as chattel. Here's a link on verses, laws, stories in OT about women:

http://www.religioustolerance.org/ofe_bibl.htm

I suppose my greatest wish is to become a better person through greater understanding of what I have such a hard time with., I find it hard to understand how Feminists can feel comfortable with the Christian faith. I am sure they have a better understanding than I, and to be honest I've always heard the Fundamentalist view on the Bible-I do not know much about other views on the Bible. So please pardon my ignorance:-).

I am very curious to hear how Christian feminists view the Old Testament, and they formulate their faith/beliefs, etc.

Just so you know I can understand the Christ part of Christianity-just not the OT. I do believe in Christ there is no male or female. I don't need help with Jesus but rather help with the OT.

I do feel attracted to Christ's message but the OT has been a huge stumbling block for me.

Any insight, or explanation of your own beliefs as a Christian feminist would be greatly appreciated:-). Hopefully, I am not the only woman to have ever had this problem.

*I realized reading what I wrote about Lot may give the impression that I do not know his daughters were never raped. I know they were not but it's just the fact that he would want to do such a thing (give them up to be raped) is what I feel is horrific/needs punishment.*

~Jessica~














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Subject:"Calvary" (Ural marble 0,40x0,50x1,18)
Time:09:25 pm
 © Nicolai Shmatko


Read moreCollapse )

Personal site of sculptor Shmat'ko  http://www.kingofmarble-shmatko.com/engver/index_en.html



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Subject:University of Alaska Fairbanks Students Protest "Ex-Gay" Speaker
Time:12:52 pm
Students at the University of Alaska Fairbanks are protesting a series of speaking engagements by Edward Delgado a so called "ex-gay" evangelist. Brought in as a guest speaker by the Campus Bible Ministries Mr. Delgado will give 14 lectures titled “From Sin’s Bondage to Christ’s Freedom" on his claim that through reading the Bible he magically journeyed from being gay to becoming a heterosexual.

Learn more about this ridiculous and unscientific claim as well as info on protests.
http://queersunited.blogspot.com/2009/09/university-of-alaska-students-protest.html
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Subject:Female Clergy
Time:08:32 am
If you either are female clergy or have female clergy in your faith community, what's it like?
What are the blessings and challenges you encounter?
How is it the same or different from having male clergy?
What are the theological, liturgical, ritual or social constraints placed upon your female clergy?
Anything else you'd like to add?

I'd love to hear more!
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Subject:What kind of a religious feminist are you?
Time:10:56 pm
Hi All,

I'm new to this comm and excited to find it!
I'm a Jewish religious feminist, just for the sake of context :-)

Question: what kind of a religious feminist are you?

a) An "equal "opportunity"kinda gal (or guy). Not necessarily interested in feminizing the Godhead or practice but in opening up the traditional avenues of worship and leadership for women.

b) A "striking a balance" kinda gal (or guy). Trying to strike a balance between traditional/patriarchal expressions of faith and adopting modern/feminine elements.

c) A "womyn worshiping the Goddess" kinda gal (or guy). Innovating and (re)creating a completely feminine and/or feminist expression of faith.

Please also list your religion and what rituals/practices you've adopted or created!

Take care!
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Subject:first black female to receive smicha
Time:12:27 pm
Alysa Stanton is about to become the first African-American woman ever to be ordained as a rabbi and the first African-American rabbi to lead a majority white congregation.

Stanton, 45, will be ordained June 6 in Cincinnati, Ohio, where she received her master's degree from the HUC-JIR, which is the rabbinical school of the Reform movement. Then in August, she will begin her new job at Congregation Bayt Shalom in Greenville, North Carolina -- long a Conservative synagogue and now affiliated with both the Reform and Conservative movements.

Progress in our time :)
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[icon] Religious Feminists-- the soul has no sex
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