Days Like Dominoes

Days Like Dominoes

My thoughts these days are fraught, frazzled little things still precious even though they are as clumsy and malleable as the playdough jewels my daughter likes to shape. 


Dream State in Sturgis Library

The story threads written so long ago still tied us to the world out there, like spider silk unspooling across the moat.


Election History, Second Draft

Killing the Buddha is going to have a lot to say in the coming weeks about the presidential election of a man best described as Voldemort. We will be bringing you first-person dispatches from the margins, as per usual, only just now a lot more of us are feeling “on the margins” than is usual.…

Killing the Buddha

An Open Letter to The Antioch Review

Dear Antioch Review, In your May 5th statement regarding the essay, “The Sacred Androgen: The Transgender Debate” by Daniel Harris, you celebrate an admittedly “deeply offensive” essay for “stirring debate.” In doing so, you note that a “key Antiochian value” is to offer a forum for free expression, to encourage critical thought and dialogue. I…

Killing the Buddha

Behind the Scenes at KtB

I am honored to be tagged in my very first “blog train,” thanks to the awesome Melissa Duclos, my grad-school colleague and writer-editor extraordinaire, whose latest venture, The Clovers Project, seeks to create mentoring groups for student, emerging, and established writers to support each other.  That’s a spirit we can definitely identify with around here…


An Interview with Jesus

If you are religion-y and hang out on Twitter, you may have encountered @JesusofNaz316, a self-described “carpenter who hangs out with fishermen, alcoholics, and prostitutes.” There are quite a few pretend religious and historical entities on Twitter, but most seem to have a hard time staying in character and remaining engaged. @JesusofNaz316 has impressed me…


“It’s The World That’s Strange”

Barbara Ehrenreich talks to Jeff Sharlet about her new book, mysticism, secrecy, and science.

Letter to USPS.

DO NOT Close It


Some Great Cause, God’s New Messiah

Early this past summer, I came across a certain quotation opening an essay by Mary Elizabeth King—now a columnist for Waging Nonviolence and a friend. This was right about the time I first got the idea in my head that I needed to learn how to tell the stories of how great resistance movements are…

Wm & H'ry

Blogging the Jameses

Reading the correspondence of Henry and William James, it’s surprising to see just how much of William’s will-to-believe doctrine and his ideas of the religiously “sick souled” appear, in nascent form, in letters to his brother. What’s even more surprising is measuring, in Henry’s replies, just how much of his brother’s thought crept into his…


Tune in to Frequencies!

Everyone talks about “spirituality,” but less often is it especially clear what we (or they) actually mean. That’s why, together with The Immanent Frame and the historians of religion Kathryn Lofton and John Lardas Modern, Killing the Buddha has been quietly working since the beginning of the year to develop Frequencies, a new online “collaborative genealogy…

Chava Rosenfarb

For Every Life Saved

The last Yiddish writer. A story from the newest book to come out of KtB, Sweet Heaven When I Die.

Lost Places of the Heart

Lost Places of the Heart: A Writing Contest

Our friends over at Obit have hatched another writing contest (remember the contest we did with them on death?), “Lost Places of the Heart.” We heartily encourage you to submit. Here’s how the call for entries goes: Houses, diners, restaurants, bars, stores, parks, hotels, vacation getaways—the places we love are a part of us. When…


The Lingering Loveliness of Long Things

When was the last time someone read you a (really long) story?

Killing the Buddha

God, Jumanji, and a Buick Skyhawk

Toby Van Buren, one of the first contributers to KtB’s revival in 2008, is recovering from a stroke in a New York hospital. Until late October, he’d been using his daily 30-minute allowance of internet time at an Apple Store on Broadway to email all manner of unpublished writing—from film reviews to an op-ed rant against New York’s plan to gas 170,000…

Photo by CS Muncy.


“People were getting auctioned up on stage but I didn’t see anything I wanted nor did I think I should be for sale.”


Share Your Secular Story

The friendly secular fellow over at NonProphet Status, Chris Stedman, has just announced a new essay contest, Share Your Secular Story, which may be something y’all will be interested in: The stories of secular (Secular Humanist, Atheist, Agnostic, et al.) people are scattered because we as a people are scattered. We are not unified by…

Killing the Buddha

Attack of the God Blogs

Lately I’ve been waking up with these terrible cold sweats. Reptilian reflexes bounce me out of bed and to my laptop across the room, where my fingers pull up a familiar spreadsheet. I’ve forgotten a blog! How could I leave that one out? Now I’ve got to spend half the morning revising the whole thing…