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Most of us in the West are liberals, whether we admit it or not. We want equal rights for all, reject racial differences, cherish the freedom of worship while preserving the freedom to disagree, and seek an economic order that suits the ambitions of the individual. But there’s a growing sense that liberalism isn’t delivering at home and that it’s not as popular as we think it ought to be in the developing world. The problem is that hubris has blinded its defenders to the crisis consuming liberalism’s identity, leaving them unable or unwilling, to respond to pressing challenges around the world.
2017 will mark the 500th anniversary of the start of the Protestant Reformation. In The Breaking of Images, noted Baylor scholar and author Philip Jenkins gets a jump on the anticipated flurry of commentary. The occasion of his piece is David Motadel's recent review of "The Politics of Iconoclasm: Religion, Violence and the Culture of Image-Breaking in Christianity and Islam" by James Noye. As Jenkins notes, "the review, and the associated scholarship, raises important questions about how we conceive of the Reformation, how we teach it, and significantly, how we will commemorate the 500th anniversary of the event in 2017."
The recent news of the opening of an independent bookstore on Manhattan’s Upper West Side was greeted with surprise and delight, since a neighborhood once flush with such stores had become a retail book desert. The opening coincides with the relocation of the Bank Street Bookstore near Columbia University, leading the New York Times to declare, “Print is not dead yet — at least not on the Upper West Side.” Two stores don’t constitute a trend, but they do point to a quiet revival of independent bookselling in the United States.
The new manual specifies that in order for an atypical sexual behavior to be classified as a mental condition, a person must:
1. Feel personal distress about their interest, not merely distress resulting from society's disapproval; or
2. have a sexual desire or behavior that involves another person's psychological distress, injury, or death, or a desire for sexual behaviors involving unwilling persons or persons unable to give legal consent.
When the Maidan protests started in Kiev late last year, Mishin followed them with increasing anxiety. He watched as young men in masks and the insignia of old Ukrainian fascist movements attacked riot police – some of them from the Donetsk area – with Molotov cocktails. He saw governors in the western provinces pulled out of their offices and roughed up by furious crowds. It seemed that the country was descending into chaos. When he heard a rumour that some of the young men from Maidan were headed for Donetsk, he believed it. After work he started taking the bus to the centre of Donetsk to stand with the protesters who called themselves ‘anti-Maidan’. Some of them waved Russian flags; others held up posters of Stalin. But they all wanted to express their disagreement with what was happening in Kiev.
1. Because they don’t give a damn about public opinion of the West about them.
2. Because they have their hand on the energy tap of the world – especially Europe.
3. Because Putin is a better strategist and a poker player than any of his Western counterparts.
Vaishnavism has not always been immune from these schisms. The followers of the teachings of the great Ramanujacarya (1017-1137) were united for seven centuries, but then succumbed to conflict over cardinal philosophical points, eventually becoming the Tengalai (Southern School) and the Vadagalai (Northern School) sometime in the 17th or 18th century.