Mission By Mail: Evangelism in a Pandemic

Religion is no "opiate of the masses." Rich and poor, educated and ignorant alike flock to the call of certainty in these uncertain times. Rather than action based on the fear of an angry deity’s surveillance and judgement, this is an escape from the unease within. Certainty is a kind of social power. It indicates authority. Certainty reinforces identity through the use of prescribed language. Certainty is a foundational part of action. Today’s pandemic religion is about something you can be sure of. It’s about a bid for authority seen as stolen by science, by government, by secularism, and by technology. In the same way that 'thoughts and prayers' are more of a dismissive platitude than an actual step towards healing, it’s “Amen” at a distance without much in the way of getting directly in the trenches to rescue the drowning.

Ep# 68“Landing on the Earth”: Ashley Carruthers on Organic Farming and Cycling in Vietnam

The Familiar Strange · #68:Landing On The Earth; Ashley Carruthers On Organic Farming And Cycling In Vietnam This week, we bring you an interview with Dr. Ashley Carruthers. Ashley is a lecturer of anthropology at the Australian National University’s School of Archaeology and Anthropology. His research interests include migration, mobilities, rural-urban relationships, networks and infrastructures, … Continue reading Ep# 68“Landing on the Earth”: Ashley Carruthers on Organic Farming and Cycling in Vietnam

Navigating Lockdown: What Studying Vipassana Mediation Taught Me About Surviving Melbourne’s Intense Lockdown

While last year I was busy being quite the adventurous backpacker, this year my biggest achievement has been to walk beyond the well-worn path between my bedroom and kitchen. It might have been the intensity of the lockdown slowly rotting away my brain, but I couldn’t help but start to draw some parallels between my time locked up in my bedroom in Melbourne, and my practice of Vipassana in Thailand.