Alternative Faiths

On anniversary of Frida Kahlo’s death, her art’s spirituality keeps fans engaged around the globe

By MarÍa Teresa HernÁndez — July 16, 2024
MEXICO CITY (AP) — Her take on life and spirituality sparked a connection between her paintings and her viewers, many of whom remain passionate admirers of her work on the 70th anniversary of her death.
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At the Olympics, athletes show guts, glory – and a lot of ink, including tattoos that profess their faith

By Gustavo Morello — July 10, 2024
(The Conversation) — One biblical verse bans tattoos, but the full story of Christianity’s relationship with body modification is more complicated.

‘Authentic’ ayahuasca rituals sought by tourists often ignore Indigenous practices and spiritual grounding

By Pardis Mahdavi — June 28, 2024
(The Conversation) — The psychotropic allure of the ayahuasca plant for hundreds of thousands of non-Indigenous consciousness seekers is raising many concerns.

Unitarian Universalists vote for action on Palestine, climate, LGBTQ+ issues and COVID-19

By Aleja Hertzler-McCain — June 24, 2024
(RNS) — The new statement of values, which passed with 80% support, is the first wholesale revision of Article II, the Unitarian Universalist covenant clause, since 1987 and reflects over three years of feedback and discussions with thousands of Unitarian Universalists. 

Unitarian Universalists to vote on updated covenant, values at 2024 General Assembly

By Kathryn Post — June 21, 2024
(RNS) — To Unitarian Universalists, changes to the denomination’s covenant clause are weighty, and occasionally fraught.

With world’s highest rates of religiously unaffiliated, East Asia remains spiritually vibrant

By Chloë-Arizona Fodor — June 17, 2024
(RNS) — While many East Asians do not identify with a religion, they continue to hold religious or spiritual beliefs in unseen beings, venerate ancestors’ spirits and engage in ritual practices, according to a new survey by Pew Research Center. 

Afro-Cuban drums, Muslim prayers, Buddhist mantras: Religious diversity blooms in once-atheist Cuba

By Luis Andres Henao — May 17, 2024
HAVANA (AP) — Today, diverse beliefs can be found mixed together on altars in homes, with the Virgin Mary sharing space with a ceramic Buddha and a warrior spirit from the Afro-Cuban faith.

Anitta defends her Afro-Brazilian faith after new music video costs her some followers

By ElÉonore Hughes — May 16, 2024
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Anitta was already known for elevating marginalized populations such as women, residents of the working-class neighborhoods known as favelas, as well as LGBTQ+ and Black people.

Rastafarian whose locks were cut in prison appeals case to Supreme Court

By Fiona André — May 15, 2024
(RNS) — Damon Landor, who is backed in the case by a broad range of faith organizations, argues the prison infringed on his religious rights. 

How the anime Demon Slayer films are driving ‘pop religion’ in Japan

By Bruce Winkelman — May 14, 2024
(Sightings) — The recent anime film both draws inspiration from Japanese religions and functions as a source of inspiration for religious practices.

Shunned for centuries, Vodou grows powerful as Haitians seek solace from unrelenting gang violence

By DÁnica Coto — May 10, 2024
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Shunned publicly by politicians and intellectuals for centuries, Vodou is transforming into a more powerful and accepted religion across Haiti, where its believers were once persecuted.

Michigan man accused of making explosives to target Satanic Temple in Massachusetts

By Associated Press — May 9, 2024
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Luke Terpstra was charged in western Michigan with two felonies: transportation of an explosive and possession of an unregistered explosive.

Taylor Swift’s ‘TTPD’: Religious imagery for a spiritually syncretic era

By Kathryn Post and Madeline Macrae — April 23, 2024
(RNS) — ‘The Tortured Poets Department’ speaks of good Samaritans and Jehovah’s Witnesses, altar sacrifices and prophecies. 
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