Category Archives: Joseph Laycock

Do you believe in god? Like, god that isn’t Kanye West?

By Joseph Laycock 2014 is shaping up to be the year of dubious new hip-hop religions. In January, a movement called “Yeezianity” that reveres Kanye West gained headlines. Now a movement called “Beyism” or “The Church of Bey” has arisen, … Continue reading

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Offerings for the Loch Ness Monster—a Sign of Buddhism’s Arrival in the West

By Joseph P. Laycock and Natasha L. Mikles While discussing construction of the upcoming Karma Kagyu Tibetan Buddhist practice center near Loch Ness, Lama Gelongma Zangmo of Scotland has suggested that the Loch Ness Monster can be regarded as a … Continue reading

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The Problem of “Social Justice Elitism”

by Joseph Laycock A recent piece by Amer F. Ahmed outlines a phenomenon he calls “social justice elitism.”  Ahmed is the associate director of multi-ethnic student affairs at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. He notes a tendency among certain students … Continue reading

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Parodies, the paranormal, and para-academics

by Joseph Laycock * This post is a creative summary of the author’s essay that appears in the latest issue of the Bulletin for the Study of Religion 42.3 (September 2013), entitled “Laughing Matters: ‘Parody Religions’ and the Command to Compare.” … Continue reading

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Now Published – Bulletin for the Study of Religion 42.3 (September 2013)

The September issue of the Bulletin has been published and is available in both print and electronic versions. Below is the table of contents of this issue. This issue focuses on the topic of religion and humor. We have a … Continue reading

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Claiming the Land for Azathoth: Lovecraftian Pranks and the Post-Modern Sacred

by Joseph Laycock Almost two weeks ago, a mysterious monument appeared in front of the Paseo Grill in Oklahoma City.  The monument is a concrete trapezoid, vaguely reminiscent of an obelisk.  Although not very large, it is quite heavy.  The … Continue reading

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“You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch:” Christmas and the Abject

by Joseph Laycock To live in the United States in December is to be bombarded with Christmas music whenever one enters a public space. The term “Christmas creep” refers to the fact that Christmas music begins a little earlier each … Continue reading

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