The Mystical in Religion


Background— Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation this past week, becoming the first Pope in 600 years to do so. Sources have also revealed that Pope Benedict XVI has a pacemaker, and secretly replaced the batteries several months ago.


Analysis– As mentioned in the reading, the Spiritualist movement involved contact with the divine through ghosts and spirits via séances. I ask myself how different are these Spiritualists from the followers of mainstream religion today? The Pope for example, is seen as the Catholic religion’s closest link on earth to the divine, he is ‘the mouth and messenger of God’. However, his resignation showcases that he is, after all, a mortal like the rest of us. I feel that much of the shock and outrage surrounding his resignation demonstrates people coming to the awareness that perhaps science/nature and magic are not separate entities. People find comfort in believing in supernatural powers; the question now is whether to ask ourselves if these forces are within or beyond the realm of human conception.

-Valentina P

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One Response to The Mystical in Religion

  1. Barbara says:

    Valentina, This echoes of last week’s discussion of skepticism and wonder. The connections between art and science that we see in Lauren’s book are striking–perhaps we can discuss this in the recitation.

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