Category Archives: Joseph Laycock

Offerings for the Loch Ness Monster—a Sign of Buddhism’s Arrival in the West

By Joseph P. Laycock and Natasha L. Mikles * This post now appears in expanded form in the Bulletin for the Study of Religion journal. While discussing construction of the upcoming Karma Kagyu Tibetan Buddhist practice center near Loch Ness, … Continue reading

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Debating a Discipline, Contesting Identities, and the Future of Islamic Studies

The following is the editorial introduction to the November 2014 issue of the Bulletin for the Study of Religion (the full table of contents having already been posted). We offer this editorial here on the blog in order to give … Continue reading

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Now Published – Bulletin for the Study of Religion 43.4 (November 2014)

The November issue of the Bulletin has been published and is available. Below is the table of contents of this issue, which includes a panel of papers on the current state and future of Islamic studies with contributors building on … Continue reading

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Two Exorcisms: The Narrative Functions of Consecrated Space

by Joseph Laycock Last week, two reports of exorcism made the news. In Oklahoma City, Archbishop Paul S. Coakley exorcized the Civic Center Music Hall to reverse the effects of a recent black mass. Meanwhile in Liberia, self-styled bishop Edward … Continue reading

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Humor, Crazy Cults, and a Final Tribute to Mork from Ork

By Philip L. Tite The shocking death of Robin Williams this past Monday has sparked a flurry of tributes, reflections, and, of course, outpourings of grief by admirers. For myself, his death recalled my recent use of clips from Mork … Continue reading

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Do you believe in god? Like, god that isn’t Kanye West?

By Joseph Laycock 2014 is shaping up to be the year of dubious new hip-hop religions. In January, a movement called “Yeezianity” that reveres Kanye West gained headlines. Now a movement called “Beyism” or “The Church of Bey” has arisen, … Continue reading

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The Problem of “Social Justice Elitism”

by Joseph Laycock A recent piece by Amer F. Ahmed outlines a phenomenon he calls “social justice elitism.”  Ahmed is the associate director of multi-ethnic student affairs at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He notes a tendency among certain students … Continue reading

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