Tikkun magazine decided to launch a vibrant multimedia blog site with the hope of sparking conversations within a dynamic, interfaith community of religious studies scholars, activists, seminary students, theologians, and progressive and spiritual people from all backgrounds.
Our goal is to bring this conversation into the mainstream media consciousness as, at very least, a known approach to the world. Everyone knows there is a Religious Right, and its concerns are well known. How many know there is a religious and spiritual Left, or, knowing it, realize that it is an intellectually deep, challenging and widely shared response to the world? So we don’t want to just talk among ourselves: our goal is to engage with the dominant culture. We’ll know we’re doing well when we hear that we have inspired politicians and activists and influenced their decisions by drawing their attention to movements they didn’t realize existed and exposing them to new perspectives.
The site addresses politics, culture, religion, and private life through an interfaith worldview that is based on the knowledge that most of us share but rarely have the gall to express overtly: that in this appalling and beautiful world, love can be embodied and become the basis for social relations.
We aim to create a central hub on the Web for anyone interested in a spiritual progressive perspective on politics, art, religion, activism, and other topics. Our site will be the place where both spiritual and nonspiritual people go to put their finger on the pulse of an interfaith spiritual progressive response to the world.
Do you have something important to say about spirituality, culture, politics, or the Religious Left? Check out our list of possible Tikkun Daily beats to see if one of them would be a good fit for you! Or, if you have a beat in mind that’s not listed here, tell us about it and why it should be part of the Tikkun Daily site.
We are seeking to hire a team of core volunteer authors to write once or twice per week for our site. We are also seeking expert guest contributors to write when they can.
POSSIBLE BEATS FOR TIKKUN DAILY
- Progressive Islam
- Progressive Judaism
- Engaged Buddhism
- Progressive Christianity (This could be several beats, e.g., focused on Evangelicals, Pentecostals, and Catholics.)
- Progressive Hinduism
- Native American Spirituality
- Atheist and Agnostic Spirituality – or if that word doesn’t work for you, address the question of how atheists can better promote community, hope, faith (with a small “f,” the kind that makes you think it worth doing something bold and risky for the future, like saving a forest, having a child, or attempting connection with someone you hate)
- Interfaith Explorations (Are you involved in interfaith coalition-building? Or are you engaged in a personal exploration of a religion that is not your own? If so, this is a possible beat for you.)
- Healing Israel/Palestine
- Domestic Policy (The ideal blogger for this beat is a policy wonk who can bring a Tikkun-type perspective to bear on current policy debates and electoral politics.)
- Religious Environmentalism
- Religion & Sexuality/Gender
- Religion & Politics, and Church/State Separation
- Religion & Race
- Sustainable Economics for People and the Planet.
- Arts & Culture (with an emphasis on intellectually cutting edge spiritual/political analysis. This could easily be split into TV, Film, Fine Art, Music, Humor, etc.)
- Foreign Policy and the Strategy of Generosity
- Global Politics (This blogger would track global geopolitical shifts, cover topics such as the World Social Forum, and talk about global issues such as the future of nuclear nonproliferation.)
- Black Liberation Theology and/or Womanist Theology
- Religiophobia Watch
- ANYTHING WE’RE MISSING?
If you are interested in becoming a contributor to Tikkun Daily, and are not already in correspondence with Dave Belden or Alana Price at Tikkun, please email a cover letter, resume, and two sample Tikkun Daily blog posts to firstname.lastname@example.org. In your cover letter, indicate which beat or beats you would be interested in covering and explain why you are the right person to cover that beat. We want to know what personal experience and expertise you would bring to the beat. Your sample blog posts don’t need to be longer than a paragraph in length each, but they should be substantive enough to give us a sense of what sort of topics you would cover within your chosen beat. Don’t be afraid to let your own voice shine through in your sample blog post.
Do you already blog and don’t have time to take on another blogging position, even though Tikkun Daily is right down your alley?
If so, please contact us anyway! We may be interested in featuring cross-posts from you whenever you write something that is particularly well suited to the Tikkun Daily site.
GUIDELINES FOR TIKKUN DAILY BLOGGERS
Becoming a blogger for Tikkun Daily
If we are excited about your application, we will invite you to become a contributor to the site by creating a WordPress account on our site. During your first few months of blogging, Tikkun Daily editors will review your posts before they appear on the site. During this initial period, we may sometimes ask you to reframe or edit your posts, as we work together to create a unique and coherent identity for the blog site. Once we know you better, and once you are thoroughly familiar with the aspirations of the Tikkun Daily site, you will become a full-fledged author, meaning you will be able to post directly on the site at will. We do, however, always reserve the right to correct typos/errors within your pieces and to remove any posts deemed highly inappropriate for the Tikkun Daily site. If we find ourselves removing your posts more than once or twice, we will ask to have a formal conversation with you about whether your continued collaboration with Tikkun Daily makes sense.
Our Aspirations for Tikkun Daily‘s Tone
Many blog sites thrive on put-downs and mean-spirited conflict. That’s not what we’re going for. But neither are we interested in creating a bland, conflict-avoidant site. Rather, we are seeking to generate conflict in a nonviolent way. We want to shake things up and question the status quo without becoming just one more snarky and cynical blog site. We are hoping that the bloggers for Tikkun Daily will criticize policies without shaming individuals. We ask you to express basic respect and decency toward all people, even those with whom you disagree publicly and mightily. We ask for our bloggers to practice humility, empathy for others, and bold expression of your deepest concerns.
There is a huge amount to be learned here, and we can help each other learn it. You might want to check out Nonviolent Communication (e.g. here: www.baynvc.org/about_nvc.php): they teach how to get beyond one’s position on a topic, to expressing the need beneath it. Example: Let’s say you hate war: what do you have in common with a militaristic right-winger? Most career military people also hate war – they know what it is – and so do many on the political right, but they are convinced that at times it’s the only way to national security. Do you care about security too? No doubt you do, and probably believe that war makes us less secure. Can you express your anti-war position in terms of that common need for effective security?
Van Jones has expressed this beautifully in the Yes! spring issue at www.yesmagazine.org/article.asp?ID=3300. He talks of how the Left’s taxonomy of pain and ascription of blame has multiplied enemies, rather than inspiring alliances, possibilities and success. He says it took him a while to develop the language and skills for the kind of politics he is doing now. It’s going to take us a while to work out the skills of blogging that actually helps to build a caring world. Any training you can give or model for the rest of us will help.
Covering Your Beat
You are responsible for your beat but not constrained by it. If your forays away from your beat mean it is not getting covered properly, that’s a problem. But if you are covering your beat responsibly and also want to dabble in other topics, that’s totally fine.
Frequency of Posts
Ideally we would like our core contributors to post every week. Until we get a large enough group of core bloggers to balance things out, we ask that you not post more than once a day so as not to overwhelm the site with your enthusiasm! Once we have more people posting more often, this won’t be such an issue. It’s up to our guest bloggers how frequently they post, but as a guest if you would like us to send you an email now and then reminding you, or when we think there is something we’d like to hear your response to, then please ask us to do that.