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The 10 myths of Christmas

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Myth One: Jesus Christ was born on Dec 25 and Christians are celebrating his birthday.
Myth Two: Christmas trees are compulsory – Westerners chop them down and Asians buy fake ones.
The Star

Parties should compete by governance, not religion: Sachin Pilot
Urging politicians to ensure that the polity does not become acrimonius by invoking traditional divisions, Corporate Affairs Minister Sachin Pilot Saturday said the time had come for parties to put speeches into action. “Time is ripe for us (parties) to make sure that our polity does not become acrimonious, that we approach people not as enemies, but as competitors asking people to vote not on the basis of the religion and caste we belong to, but who can serve you better,” Pilot said in an interactive session organised here by FICCI at the industry chamber’s 86th annual general meeting.

Salman Khan booked for insulting religion
Police here Friday booked actor Salman Khan for hurting religious sentiment of Muslims in a TV reality show hosted by him on Colors channel. A case against Khan and producers of the show “Bigg Boss” for insulting a religion was booked under section 295 of the Indian Penal Code at Falaknuma police station in the old city of Hyderabad.
Gulf News

Advanced economies ‘can learn from the Islamic system’
The Islamic financial system grew out of the great trading and commercial empires established after the rise of Islam in the seventh century, stretching from the Atlantic coast of North Africa to the islands of South East Asia.
The National

Indians push to tame Hindu-Muslim rioting with new bill
Tensions between the majority Hindu population and the Muslim minority go back centuries. Half a million people died in rioting during the 1947 partition of India, when Pakistan was created as a Muslim homeland. While religious violence has dropped dramatically since then, the number of incidents is ticking upward — from 668 last year to 725 in the first 10 months of this year, causing 143 deaths, official data show. And many Indians are concerned that divisions between religious groups could deepen with the national elections scheduled for next year, especially because the main opposition party is led by a fervent Hindu nationalist, Narendra Modi.
The Washington Post

Pope Francis Christmas Message To Curia Warns Against Mediocrity, Gossip In Vatican
Already, heads have started to roll: Just last week, Francis reshuffled the advisory body of the powerful Congregation for Bishops, the office that vets all the world’s bishop nominations. He removed the arch-conservative American Cardinal Raymond Burke, a key figure in the U.S. culture wars over abortion and gay marriage, and also nixed the head of Italy’s bishops’ conference and another hardline Italian, Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, earlier axed as head of the Vatican office responsible for priests.
Huffington Post

History textbook under fire in Marion County
Some conservative activists in the Ocala area say a state-approved textbook for 10th graders slights Christianity and Judaism while being favorably biased toward Islam.
The Ledger

The need for spiritual transformation
MORE and more, inter-faith and inter-religious dialogues are being organised to bring together leaders of the world’s major religions to address ways of promoting peace and unity among mankind. While a major part of the discourse centres around identifying commonalities across the religions and focusing on the universal values and ideals, there also arises the need to pinpoint the uniqueness of each faith and belief system. Often the outcome is an impasse as spiritual leaders and adherents speak about the exclusiveness and autonomy of their own religion.
The Sun Daily

Constitution-Making in Islamic Countries – A Theoretical Framework
New paper that explores the different theoretical models that underlie constitution-making, and highlights the conceptional differences often masked by the dominant focus on elections.
Social Science Research Network

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