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Religion and Spirituality

Friends, Authors & Others program

Phone registration is underway for Canton author, Charles Steele, to discuss his newest book, "Discovering God in Science." Did the Big Bang create the universe? Did life start by chance, all without a cause? Does God exist? Many scientists are putting forth the God Hypothesis as an alternate theory to the origin of the universe. If you are interested in a cutting-edge debate about science and religion, then Discovering God in Science is a must-read. Join new author Charles E. Steele as he offers insight into this ongoing debate on Thursday, November 19th at 7:00PM in the library Community Room.

Haunted Michigan

Don't you just love chasing after the spirits? For website links to information on haunted houses in Westland, Wayne, Canton, Plymouth, Ann Arbor, Detroit and other areas, see this Haunted Houses website. For an alphabetical city list of haunted sites in Michigan that explains why each is haunted, see Shadowlands Haunted Places Index. Check out the parapsychology section of our library for researching spooky phenomena. Have fun ghostbusting this Halloween!

Relic of New Saint to be Displayed in Detroit

Portrait of St. DamienThe relic of a new saint will be displayed October 13-14 at Blessed Sacrament Cathedral in Detroit. St. Damian of Molokai in Hawaii will be canonized by Pope Benedict XVI on October 11th. For information on the times of display and church services see the Archdiocese of Detroit news article. For information on this saint or his relic, see the Frequently Asked Questions: The Relic of Saint Damien of Molokai news article.

The Lost Symbol

Dan Brown's new thriller The Lost Symbol deals with symbology or the study of symbols with which the hero and heroine have to decipher secret signs of occult orders. To complement this exciting novel, here are related books in our library that deal with hidden messages and meanings in religious art, life and the subconscious.

The Sistine Secrets: Michelangelo's Forbidden Messages in the Heart of the Vatican

The Occult in Art

1000 Symbols: What Shapes Mean in Art and Myth

The Evolution of God

A book receiving some really good press lately is The Evolution of God by Robert Wright. The author follows the history of religion from polytheism to monolatry (worship of one god among many) to monotheism, focusing primarily on the evolving vision of God in the Hebrew Bible, the New Testament and the Qur'an, ending with a discussion of religion's place in human evolution. Focusing mostly on scriptures, he avoids the more philosophical territory covered in Karen Armstrong's History of God and The Great Transformation. Here is a website with excerpts from the book chapters as well as a video with the author talking about his purpose in writing this book.

Ramadan Moon

Looking for stories to share with your family during this Ramadan season? Check out Ramadan Moon by Na'ima B. Robert for a colorful description of this Islamic holiday from a child's perspective. Try Magid Fasts for Ramadan for a story about an eight-year-old boy who decides to fast even though his family thinks he is too young. Will Magid make it to Eid ul-Fitr?

Ramadan Books

According to Wikipedia, Ramadan is

...the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, sexual conduct, smoking, and indulging in anything that is in excess or ill-natured; from dawn until sunset. Fasting is meant to teach the Muslim patience, modesty and spirituality.

The Islamic calendar is lunar, whereas the Gregorian calendar is solar, so the beginning of Ramadan varies in date on the international calendar of record, while not varying on the Islamic calendar. This year, Ramadan begins on August 21st in the Eastern Hemisphere and on the 22nd in the Western Hemisphere. However, since practicing Muslims celebrate Holidays beginning in the evening of the previous day, Ramadan effectively begins at sundown tonight. For more information about Ramadan, take a look at these titles: Likewise, read and watch President Barack Obama's best wishes to the Muslim community at the White House website.
We also have materials about Islam and Islam -- Customs and Practices.

Cashless: The New Economic Program?

Cashless cover pictureIs it possible to imagine a world where cash is no longer accepted and Smart Cards and credit cards are used for everything, including vending machines? Where direct deposit is not only requested but mandated? Why is this scenario not only likely, but less expensive for the government, and actually lucrative in the long run?

Everyday Herbs in Spiritual Life

by Michael J. Caduto

Herbs have been essential to spiritual beliefs and practices throughout time and history. From Christian Scripture to Hindu observances, Jewish ritual to early Islamic literature, Native American traditions to Buddhist symbolism, plants are seen as a blessing from God and a way to remain in harmony with Spirit. Everyday Herbs in Spiritual Life is a hands-on guide to incorporating herbs into our spiritual life.

Michael J. Caduto is a renowned author, ecologist, educator and storyteller who has written and coauthored sixteen books, including "Native American Gardening", the "Keepers of the Earth" series, and "In the Beginning: The Story of Genesis and Earth Activities for Children."

New Catholic Encyclopedia Supplement 2009

We have purchased a new 2009 supplement to the New Catholic Encyclopedia that focuses on the theme of science and the church. This is searchable separately through the online catalog or along with other resources in our Religion Virtual Collection Database. From Contraception to Creationism, Eugenics to Exorcism, find the historical facts as well as the Catholic position on these important issues.

Don't Judge a Book By Its Cover

We're looking for some special people to become part of the library catalog. Are you a religious leader in the Christian, Muslim, Hindu or Jewish faiths? Are you a vegetarian, a policeman, an atheist, a gay/lesbian person, a U.S. military veteran, a rock recording artist, a published author or any other interesting or unusual person? If so, we want you.

The Canton Public Library is starting a Living Books program where patrons can check out "living books" (that would be YOU) for 30 minutes of face-to-face, one-on-one conversation. These interviews are intended to answer questions for the curious, satisfy special interests and beliefs and learn from others' experiences. With dialogue comes understanding - with understanding comes tolerance.

Angels, Demons, and the Illuminati

The soon-to-be featured film "Angels and Demons" portrays a fictional global struggle between the Catholic Church and a secret sinister society known as the Illuminati. But what exactly was the Illuminati in history or contemporary time? What are some theories of the dark agendas of these global organizations? Books that cover this group and/or topic and others similar to them are:
Circle of Intrigue: the Hidden Inner Circle of the Global Illuminati Conspiracy
Rule by Secrecy: the Hidden History that Connects the Trilateral Comission, the Freemasons and the Great Pyramids

Mother Teresa by Maya Gold

Mother Teresa (August 26, 1910 – September 5, 1997), born Agnesë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu, was an Albanian Roman Catholic nun with Indian citizenship. Although she was born in Skopje, the capital of Macedonia today, Mother Teresa's family came from Shkoder, Albania her father was active in national politics and her mother was a devout Catholic. Mother Teresa has been quoted as saying: "By blood I am Albanian. By citizenship, an Indian. By faith, I am a Catholic nun.

Easter Reads

In "Evidence for the Resurrection",  bestselling author Josh McDowell and his son, Sean examine the gospel and 2000 years of Christian history, concluding that Christ conquered death in clear, concise and accessible chapters. 

St. Patrick's Day Reads

To know more about St. Patrick, try "Patrick, the Pilgrim Apostle of Ireland" or "The Steadfast Man, a Biography of St. Patrick". To know more about his influence on Ireland, see "The Voice of the Irish: the Story of Christian Ireland". For a DVD, try "Patrick" narrated by Liam Neeson. For interests in famous Irish, try "The Irish 100: A Ranking..".

Persepolis

An interesting DVD about growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution is Persepolis, which was a 2007 Academy Award nominee for best animated feature. It is told from writer and director Marjane Satrapi's experience and point of view.

Lent: Orthodox Style

Lent is a season of fasting, spiritual and mental cleansing, and discipline. But how orthodox do the orthodox fast in these parts? Read this article from the Detroit Free Press to find out how. For a broader view of lenten festivities, see The Encyclopedia of Easter, Carnival and Lent in our library collection.

The Faith of Barack Obama

The Faith of Barack Obama explores the religious background of Barack Obama, examines his relationship with the Reverend Jeremiah Wright at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, and discusses how his beliefs shape his personal and political life. Read this book for an insight into our new president's ideals.