Who Is Santa Muerte?
The folk saint Santa Muerte might seem mysterious, but her devotees embrace a wide variety of everyday practices.
In Defense of Kitsch
The denigration of kitsch betrays a latent anti-Catholicism, one born from centuries of class and ethnic divisions.
Why Some Buddhist Monks Ordain Trees
Buddhist monks in Thailand began tying trees with their traditional colored robes in the 1980s, as threats to ecology increased.
The Mormon Fans of Europe’s 1848 Revolutions
As the crowned heads of Europe shuddered at the unrest in the streets, members of the Latter-Day Saints movement cheered.
The Return of Ocular Communion
The idea of a virtual Eucharist may feel at odds with Catholic tradition, but it has deep roots in the church’s history.
Healing, Spirituality, and Black Lives Matter
Spirituality has long infused and inspired social justice movements. Activists today expand that heritage.
Martin Luther’s Monsters
Prodigies, or monsters, were opaque and flexible symbols that signaled that God was sending some message.
When Monks Went Undercover to Steal Relics
Because relics were understood to be capable of working miracles, any relic that was stolen must have wanted to be.
Ancient Monks Got That Quarantine Feeling, Too
Listlessness, boredom, torpor, that "noonday demon" that tempts you away from spiritual connections—that's what was called acedia.
How Spirit Photography Made Heaven Literal
Are the departed watching over us, and if so, what are they wearing? Victorian spiritualists believed that ghosts could be captured on film.