Hildegard von Bingen, bronze statue by Karl-Heinz Oswald, 1998.

Informed Worship

Saint Hildegard and the science of religious experience.

Hildegard von Bingen, Rupertsberger Codex des Liber Scivias

The Sapphire in Hildegard’s Wine

On the frontispiece of Hildegard von Bingen’s Scivias, the nun is propping her feet on a stool—perhaps to elevate her knees high enough to compose the first strokes of her…


The Taqwacores Book Launch in DUMBO

We just got word that there’s a new book about the Muslim-American punk scene, featuring photographs by Kim Badawi and a foreword by KtB contributor Michael Muhammad Knight. There’s going…

Killing the Buddha

Corpse Posing to ‘Beat It’

Some of my best thoughts have happened when I was supposed to be emptying my mind. Like yesterday, lying on my back, limbs limp, ankles and shoulders trying to relax…

Cornel West

The Supreme Love and Revolutionary Funk of Dr. Cornel West, Philosopher of the Blues

(A version of this article first appeared in the May 28, 2009 Rolling Stone.) Cornel West is a slender man, but he hugs like a sumo wrestler: crouch, grab, wrap…

Nokia Theatre at Times Square

Spaces of Hope

Praying in the Cathedral of Rock.


Resounding through Manhattan

Today I had the great privilege to join members of Resonanda, Brown University’s medieval music ensemble, for their one-day, unannounced New York tour (before you continue, go to Resonanda’s MySpace…

Jonathan Rundman

Heartland Liturgy

Rocking out to hymns and ordaining gay pastors: an interview with Lutheran singer-songwriter Jonathan Rundman.

Killing the Buddha

God Saved the World

They’re not who you’d usually expect to meet at a monastery.

Photo by the author

Let All Who Mourn Now Rise

The art of making sounds one doesn’t understand.

By ashley.adcox via Flickr

Silver Trumpets

The rise and fall of a cussin’ campus Christian rock star.

Bruce Springsteen performs at halftime during the NFL Super Bowl XLIII football game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Steelers, Sunday, Feb. 1, 2009, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)

Enlightenment through rock n roll

We got a thoughtful letter today from Satya Krishna Dass: Hey, Why can’t we have enlightenment through rock ‘n roll?  It may originate from the lower chakras but it travels…


The Best Books Media of 2008

Forget the standard litany of the best-selling books and most popular movies…

Killing the Buddha

Happy Ethiopian New Year!

Yes, we know that it is also Rosh Hashanah, but we’ve published so much already about the Jewish High Holidays that we thought it was time to blow another new…

"They don't preach, they just play
the hell out of their set..."

God and Guitars

Christian rock might not have all the answers, but for one fan and one band, it’s the questions that matter.

"It starts as a low keening..."

Call to Prayer

As regimes come and go, faith drifts through the air in Iran.

photo by Gordon Parks, circa 1940

The Singing, Not the Song

In which a godless music fan comes dangerously close to having a religious experience.


Running, Returning

Can a psychedelic rock band conjure real transcendence?