Choi Xoo Ang’s Disturbing Sculptures

And plug into your brain

Choi Xoo Ang, the Seoul born artist and dark master of the imagination, has created sculptures at once hyperrealistic and completely nightmarish, making you feel as if your real life has bled into an inescapable, bad dream.

Twisted tongues, stitched backs and floating heads appear throughout Choi’s polymer clay figures, which display remarkable realism despite their fabulous content. Many of the pieces give metaphorical shape to real issues in modern day Korea, including human rights and abuse.

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India’s Top Cop Offends on Rape

“If you can’t prevent rape, you enjoy it.”

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It is never a good idea to make a rape joke. India’s top police official apologized Wednesday after saying that “if you can’t prevent rape, you enjoy it,” a particularly insensitive remark in a country that is still reeling from last year’s fatal rape of a 23-year-old student. Making matters even worse, Central Bureau of Investigations chief Ranjit Sinha’s comment came after a discussion that had nothing to do with rape in the first place. Sinha said that if the state could not stop gambling, it should at least bring in some revenue from it, using “if you can’t prevent rape, you enjoy it” as an analogy. Activists are already calling for Sinha’s resignation, especially since his is in charge of several rape investigations.

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Qur’an, Al-Insan, Surah 76:5-9

The righteous shall drink of a cup mixed with the elixir of Kafur, a gushing spring made for the chosen that keep their vows and fear the torments of the Day of Judgment, those who though in dire need themselves sustain the orphans, feed the wretched and the enslaved, and say, “We sustain you for the sake of Allah and expect no reward nor gratitude from you in return.”

Seek the water

“The outward form of things passes away, but the essence remains forever. How long will you be besotted with the shape of the jug? Cast aside the jug, and seek the water. If you look too closely at the form, you miss the essence. If you are wise, you will always pick out the pearl from the shell.”

– Rumi, “Mathnawi”

The Problem of Reading the Qur’an

Dr. Carl W. Ernst examines the Qur’an and the unique challenges that come with studying such an ancient and important book.

Excerpt 1:
Hostile readers of the Qur’an use a literary approach that is the equivalent of a blunt instrument. They make no attempt to understand the text as a whole; instead, they take individual verses out of context, give them the most extreme interpretation possible, and implicitly claim that over1 billion Muslims around the world robotically adhere to these extremist views without exception. This is, in effect, a conspiracy theory that has virally multiplied in significant sectors of modern Euro- American society. It is irrational, it is paranoid, and it is out of touch with the realities of the lives of most Muslims around the world today. It ignores the existence of multiple traditions of interpreting the Qur’an in very different fashions(see chapter 1). Unfortunately, a small minority of extremists, who quote the Qur’an in support of terrorist violence, have been magnified by the media into a specter that is now haunting Europe (and the United States)more intensely than Marxism ever did.2 In part because of these contemporary anxieties, it is difficult for most Europeans and Americans to read the Qur’an.

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Four Dead in Grisly Phoenix, Arizona Shooting

Four people are dead in a gruesome shooting in northeast Phoenix, Arizona, including the suspected gunman, in what appears to be a case of domestic violence.

According to police, a man killed his wife, teenage daughter and a family friend before apparently taking his own life. The family friend’s body was found in the driveway, the daughter’s inside the house, and the wife’s body was found burning in the backyard. The suspected gunman was found dead in an alleyway more than a block from the family’s home.

Phoenix police say the wife reportedly filed an order of protection just hours before the shooting. The incident started when she tried to leave the home. Phoenix’s 3TV reports that after the shooting, police and members of the SWAT team surrounded the house and sent in a robot before they entered the home. Authorities have not yet released the names of the victims.

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