Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Breaking good: How religion, science can work together

What happens when you bring together respected social scientists who for many years have gathered significant data on the relationship between science and religion? A humble dialogue offering new pathways to cooperative efforts on issues from evolution and climate change to eradicating disease

[Read Full Column...]

Tradition bound? Many Orthodox parishes struggle with change

Eastern Orthodox churches in the U.S. have several strengths, including awe-inspiring worship, a strong sense of theological identity and a willingness to embrace new technology. But a major new study also found that in an environment that calls on all houses of worship to be more creative in reaching new generations, Eastern Orthodox parishes seem particularly resistant.

[Read Full Column...]

What does faith have to do with sports? A lot, it turns out

Sport as sacrament. Loving your opponent as yourself. Athletics for the sake of the soul. As issues from racism to doping to violence on and off the playing field gather increasing public notoriety, so, too, are philosophers and ethicists directing their lofty attention to the connection among sports, faith and the common good.

[Read Full Column...]

A conversation with Michael Emerson on race, humility and ways we can talk to one another

There are few people better able to offer perspective on the polarized state of the nation today than Michael Emerson. In an interview, Emerson, one of the foremost sociologists on race, religion and civility in the United States, offers incisive observations on how we got to where we are today, and what we can do to promote a more intellectually humble, respectful national dialogue.

[Read Full Column...]

Is Trump capable of change? Not so far, humility scholars reflect

Shortly before the 2016 election, we asked three leading scholars to reflect on humility and the presidency. The hope held out then was that should Trump be successful, the demands of the job would tone down his divisive rhetoric and lead him to become more humble. So how is Trump doing? The consensus in follow-up conversations: Not so good.

[Read Full Column...]

Religious freedom, civility are at heart of struggle for democracy in Asia

Political appeals to religious and secular constituencies have roiled democracies across Asia and the world, prominent journalists, scholars, analysts and religious leaders revealed at a conference in Jakarta. But that does not mean Islam or other major religions are incompatible with democracy, participants noted. What does matter is that the religious freedoms and dignity of all groups are protected and respected.

[Read Full Column...]

Not just a joke: Studies find religious humor can break through prejudice, build social ties

Jokes about religion should be left to the professionals, not the politicians, a comprehensive new survey of religion and humor finds. The research is part of a larger project involving several Scandinavian studies on religion and humor that indicate support for a less hostile, more nuanced approach to religious humor that has the potential to break through the polarization in the West over perceived threats from immigrants and religious minorities.

[Read Full Column...]

Culture matters: Reconciling faith and homosexuality across borders

No one factor tells the whole story of why attitudes toward homosexuality vary widely across national borders. But new research is helping to unravel why, despite the fact most world religions have proscriptions against homosexual practices, some nations are much more tolerant than others.

[Read Full Column...]

Studies: How clergy can help believers die a 'good death'

Two new studies find that many clergy are both ill-prepared and reluctant to fully engage in end-of-life conversations with terminally ill congregation members and their families. The result, the studies suggest, is that more believers may be spending their final days enduring painful treatments with little chance of success.

[Read Full Column...]

Crime stoppers: Black church significant deterrent to violence

A new study analyzing data from 733 U.S. counties encompassing more than 80 percent of the black population revealed that homicide, robbery, burglary and larceny rates all decreased the more people in the county were active in black Protestant churches. And where it can do the most good, in areas with high rates of poverty and unemployment, the black church is doing the most good, the study found.

[Read Full Column...]