Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Monday, December 03, 2012

Bible & Spirituality Seminar - Open to all

This week: Free to all -

Prof. Melissa Raphael,
‘Idolatry and the Alienated Human Form: Jewish Spirituality, Art, and the Advertisement of Perfection.’

Wednesday 5 December, 5.30-7.00

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Diwali Field Trip..

On tuesday, RPE (and a few others) went to the Leicester Diwali 2012 celebrations...

More details can be seen at http://www.leicester.gov.uk/diwali/ but the best account is probably that offered by staff and students over on our course Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/RPEglos/

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Just to remind visitors that we also have a Facebook  group, which is open to all..



Monday, October 08, 2012


For those looking for revision or other materials on A-Level (AS and A2) Religious Studies, Philosophy & Ethics, etc - we also have a blog over at http://philosvids.wordpress.com/ that has a series of videos that we keep adding to...

Feel free to view them - and we will take more questions if you email them to dwebster@glos.ac.uk


Friday, September 21, 2012

The Examined Life Video Presentation

Thanks for the presentations this morning. Very interesting and enjoyable...and I like this video!

Well done all.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


New students looking for info on the film The Examined Life should look at http://r-p-e.blogspot.co.uk/2010/09/examined-life.html and will also find useful stuff at https://www.facebook.com/groups/RPEglos/ - hope you enjoyed the film!


Monday, September 03, 2012

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Gay, Black, and Quaker: History Catches Up with Bayard Rustin

Interesting essay at Religion Dispatches:

Stephen Angell's piece begins:

Recent weeks have seen history-making collaborations among leaders of the African American and LGBT equality movements. In May, the national board of the NAACP endorsed marriage equality for same-sex couples, shortly after President Obama did the same. This month, LGBT leaders joined the NAACP and others in New York City to call for an end to the police department’s “stop and frisk” policy, which has targeted mostly African Americans and Latinos.
“In the last four years, with the increase in hate crimes across the country, with states attempting to encode discrimination into their state laws and constitutions,” NAACP President Ben Jealous told the Times, “it’s become clear that, just as Bayard Rustin admonished us all, that we would either stand together or die apart.”
That comment certainly led many readers to ask, “as who admonished us?” Bayard Rustin’s pivotal role as advisor to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and as organizer of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom (where King delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech) should have assured his place in American social and political history.
But Rustin has long been denied his proper place—largely because he was an openly gay man.

Read the rest at:

Monday, April 30, 2012

Revision Q&A With Dr Roy Jackson.

OK!  See below: we received some questions and have made a video response for revising students: here it is:


Following some conversations with teachers, and the publication of the 2nd edition of The God of Philosophy, we are going to record a revision Q and A session with Dr Roy Jackson.

Our plan is:
Teachers: get your students (GCSE/AS/A2 level) to think of Philosophy of Religion questions and send them to dwebster@glos.ac.uk by the end of FRIDAY 5TH MAY. 

Then next week - I will will quiz Dr Jackson - on video - and post the resulting set of answers on this blog (and YouTube). Be sure to include the person who asked the question - and the school name - so I can tell Roy who is asking it.

Roy is Course Leader for the Religion, Philosophy and Ethics course here, and I will be asking Roy the questions...

You can also ask the questions via our FaceBook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/RPEglos/ 

[you may need to join but all are welcome, the group contains our students, ex-students, teachers, staff elsewhere, and people studying these subjects at colleges & schools too]

Friday, April 20, 2012

Atheism, Religion & Ethics

There is a new piece at http://www.abc.net.au/religion/articles/2012/04/17/3478816.htm by Zizek: where he looks at the idea that we need religion in order to be moral people..

I like the bit below, not that I am sure I am totally persuaded by it:

..a quick look at our moral landscape confirms that it is a much more appropriate description of the atheist liberal/hedonist behaviour: they dedicate their life to the pursuit of pleasures, but since there is no external authority which would guarantee them personal space for this pursuit, they get entangled in a thick network of self-imposed "Politically Correct" regulations, as if they are answerable to a superego far more severe than that of the traditional morality. They thus become obsessed with the concern that, in pursuing their pleasures, they may violate the space of others, and so regulate their behaviour by adopting detailed prescriptions about how to avoid "harassing" others, along with the no less complex regime of the care-of-the-self (physical fitness, health food, spiritual relaxation, and so on).

Today, nothing is more oppressive and regulated than being a simple hedonist.
As always with articles with hundreds and hundreds of comments: BE VERY WARY of reading them.. 

New Blogs: Philosophy of Religion, and 'spiritual' images..

Dr Roy Jackson, the RPE Course Leader has a new blog at http://www.godofphilosophy.com/ - which has loads of material on the Philosophy of Religion.

This includes short videos, blog posts, a sample chapter from the 2nd edition of his book The God of Philosophy, web-links, and more. He will also be expanding it as time goes on. It will be of interest to our students, but also to those revising for religion, philosophy and ethics in an A Level context...

While on the subject of blogs - I have a new one at http://dispirited-dave.tumblr.com/ for my (ever-growing) collections of odd/unusual Buddha images, and for images related to my interest in Mind/Body/Spirit self-presentations..

Feel free to look at the picture blog too (the Budha stuff may need you to look at some of the past pages, as there is a growing archive in them). You can also submit images to this gallery/photo-blog at http://dispirited-dave.tumblr.com/submit


Friday, April 13, 2012

Want to be an RE Teacher?

On Wednesday April 25th at 5pm, two former RPE students, and now RE teachers, will come in to FCH to talk about their teaching experiences and answer any questions you may have. Jason Chambers and Kt Green are products of the class of 2008 and so they were the first to graduate from the RPE degree. This will be an informal session and it is a chance for you to find out more about the experience of becoming and being a teacher generally, and in the subject of religion and philosophy more specifically.

If you can’t make the session, then put in a question in the comments and hopefully I can read some of them out on the day. 

Wednesday 5pm at FCH HC204

Monday, March 05, 2012

Chat and discussion

Just to note: https://www.facebook.com/groups/RPEglos/ has been very lively recently - and all can join the group where we have had pics from the day trip, debates about gay marriage, contraception, death and all the usual fun...

RPE Day Trip to London

7:30am - a bit early to be on campus...

Last Friday saw staff and students head to London for a day trip..

After an early start at FCH campus, we arrived at the Swaminaryan Mandir in Neasden, where we witnessed Aarti.. 

After substantial shopping in the gift shop, it was back on the coach, to head to central London.
The Swaminaryan Mandir in Neasden

We then had a little free time, for most of us this meant coffee and some people-watching..

Then we entered the British Museum, and Roy sorted tickets and we entered the Hajj Exhibition

This was very impressive and well-laid out. There was so much to take in, and so much detail, and I felt that I had learnt a lot... I hope the students felt the same way...

There is a good video re the Hajj which you can see at http://bri.mu/ppPcPg  - as well as the one here...

Then it was rather a long coach trip back - but overall this was a really good day out - there will be more pics on the course Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/RPEglos/ 

After Easter we will be doing a day in Oxford, looking at material in the Ashmolean Museum...


Monday, February 06, 2012

Bible & Spirituality Seminar.. 15th Feb

Dispirited: Does Contemporary Spirituality Make Us Stupid, Selfish & Unhappy?

In a first for me, I'll be giving a (free) public lecture as part of the Bible & Spirituality seminar series here at Gloucestershire..

I have also have a blog on this topic at http://dispirited.org/

There is an open invite at: http://www.facebook.com/events/336044036422582/ - feel free to respond..

Details below..

    • When
      Wednesday, 15 February 2012
    • Time
      17:30 until 19:00
  • Where
    FCH Campus, Room TC007, Swindon Road, Cheltenham, United Kingdom
  • Description
    Does Spirituality Make Us Stupid, Selfish & Unhappy?

    A talk, and discussion, as part of the Bible & Spirituality Seminar Series.

    The talk will begin with an assessment of "non-religious spirituality", and conclude with a plea for a critical, existentialist, atheism.
dispirited cover

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Day Trip to London for Hindu Temple visit and Hajj Exhibition

A limited number of tickets are now available for students for a day trip on 2nd March to the stunning Shri Swaminarayan Mandir in Neasdon followed by the Hajj Exhibition at the British Museum.

The coach will leave FCH at 8am and we will be given a tour of the Hindu Temple at 10.30. After lunch we will be taken to the Hajj Exhibition at the British Museum, leaving London for the return journey at 5pm.

For details of the Temple: http://www.mandir.org/

Tickets are limited and it is first-come, first-served. We are offering this for £15 for the whole day (admittance to the Hajj Exhibition alone would normally cost £10) and can be purchased at the University Online Store: http://store.glos.ac.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?modid=1&prodid=755&deptid=4&catid=25&prodvarid=0

Ticket-holders will be given more information about the trip closer to the time.

Thursday, January 05, 2012


Of interest to those on the Indian Religions module?