Tag Archives: Religion

Diversity and religious pluralism are disappearing amid Iraq’s crisis

Islamic State militants have destroyed sites of great cultural and historical significance in Iraq, such as the tomb of the prophet Jonah in Mosul. EPA/Stringer Ali Mamouri, Australian Catholic University Iraq previously had one of the most multicultural societies in the Middle East. A broad diversity of religions, races and cultures flourished in Iraq, united by common heritage, culture and …

Read More »

Can the laws of physics disprove God?

Could God travel faster than the speed of light? robert_s/Shutterstock Monica Grady, The Open University I still believed in God (I am now an atheist) when I heard the following question at a seminar, first posed by Einstein, and was stunned by its elegance and depth: ‘If there is a God who created the entire universe and ALL of its …

Read More »

AN UPDATE ON THE ROHINGYA CRISIS

  Three years after the Myanmar Army orchestrated genocide in Rakhine State, the Rohingya crisis continues. Almost 1 million survivors of the Army’s brutal crackdown are stuck in transient settlements in Bangladesh, stateless for over three years. Back in Myanmar, at least 600,000 Rohingya remain internally displaced, and over 100,000 sequestered in camps Human Rights Watch calls “an open prison without end.” The recent arrest of 99 …

Read More »

Are the brains of atheists different to those of religious people? Scientists are trying to find out

Do atheists think differently? patrice6000/Shutterstock Miguel Farias, Coventry University The cognitive study of religion has recently reached a new, unknown land: the minds of unbelievers. Do atheists think differently from religious people? Is there something special about how their brains work? To illustrate what they’ve found, I will focus on three key snapshots. The first one, from 2003, is probably …

Read More »

Five truths about the hijab that need to be told

A women is more than what she wears. Darrin Henry/Shutterstock Peter Hopkins, Newcastle University Rio 2016 is proving not just to be a platform for sporting prowess, it is also helping to shake up some traditionally-held cultural misconceptions too. In the West, many regard traditional Muslim dress like the hijab as a sign of oppression, with women forced to wear …

Read More »

The term ‘Judeo-Christian’ has been misused for political ends – a new ‘Abrahamic’ identity offers an alternative

The term ‘Judeo-Christian’ serves political agendas. 1000 Words/Shutterstock Toby Greene, Bar-Ilan University Upcoming elections in the Netherlands and Germany in 2021 will test the strength of the radical right, which has a distinct vision of European identity. In contrast to those who view democratic values as essentially secular and universal, and not tied to specific cultural or religious roots, radical …

Read More »

The meaning of life – a psychologist’s view

Shutterstock/LedyX Steve Taylor, Leeds Beckett University The search for meaning in life is a familiar challenge to many of us. Some materialist scientists and philosophers consider it a futile search. Prominent atheist Richard Dawkins, for example, claims that human beings are just “throwaway survival machines” whose only purpose is to survive and replicate genes. Otherwise, the theory goes, there is …

Read More »

Is belief in God a delusion?

Hassan Saleh/Unsplash, FAL Ryan McKay, Royal Holloway and Robert Ross, Macquarie University As the pandemic raged in April, churchgoers in Ohio defied warnings not to congregate. Some argued that their religion conferred them immunity from COVID-19. In one memorable CNN clip, a woman insisted she would not catch the virus because she was “covered in Jesus’ blood”. Some weeks later, …

Read More »

Religion, race and nationality – what are our prejudices and how can we overcome them?

Finding common ground. Melitas/Shutterstock Julian Hargreaves, University of Cambridge What do you think of your neighbours? And what do they think of you? Concerns around increasing division and polarisation in the UK have persisted stubbornly since the EU referendum in 2016. We hear a lot from academics, politicians and journalists about a supposedly fractured nation. But how divided is Britain? …

Read More »

Pourquoi le sport est devenu une cible pour les islamistes

William Gasparini, Université de Strasbourg Selon une information révélée par Le Parisien le 18 octobre 2020, Abdoullakh Anzorov, l’assassin du professeur Samuel Paty à Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, avait fréquenté un club de lutte. En 2017, dans ce même club, des dérives communautaires avaient été signalées, notamment des prières dans les vestiaires ou des pressions sur les tenues vestimentaires des jeunes femmes licenciées. Placée …

Read More »