Posts Tagged ‘Religion’

The failure of the West to understand the religious roots of extremism in Afghanistan

Monday, August 30th, 2021
religious extremism

It was an unfortunate coincidence of history and geography that most of the world’s energy reserves, in the form of oil and natural gas, were buried under some of the world’s most primitive societies. The Western world’s insatiable appetite to feed its cars and planes with petroleum products enriched these societies without developing them. Their Read more

U N M O O R E D

Monday, August 16th, 2021

An image has been occurring to me of boats that have become unmoored. They end up on the rocks, or colliding with one another. There are features of our Western world’s culture that seem to fit the image. Important aspects of our lives seem to have become disconnected from what gives them meaning. If this Read more

Religious freedom, hate speech, adoption, child abuse

Thursday, April 22nd, 2021

Same-sex adoption, religious freedoms and child-abuse petitions are before Parliament at the moment. Reforming law in relation to hate speech offences is also on the agenda. If the hate speech law passes, offenders will face a larger maximum sentence than if they were found guilty of rioting, assaulting a child or providing explosives to commit Read more

The invisible string between religious proselytizing and influencing

Thursday, March 18th, 2021
influencers

I’ve been thinking about religion, my own relationship to it, and how it shows up when I observe influencers. These dense subjects arose for me after this New York Times op-ed about how influencers have kind of become secular morality preachers was published last week, just as religion came up in a discussion group I’m Read more

The empty religions of Instagram

Thursday, March 11th, 2021
instagram

On Instagram, I follow 700 people, mostly women. One hundred of those women follow Glennon Doyle, whose memoir “Untamed” has been on the Times best-seller list for 51 weeks. Fans of Ms Doyle’s gospel, an accessible combination of self-care, activism and tongue-in-cheek Christianity (“Jesus loves me, this I know, for he gave me Lexapro”), can Read more

The pressure is to appear normal: the crisis in modest fashion

Monday, March 8th, 2021
Modest fashion

Are Muslim women being asked to change too much of themselves in order to fit in? ‘Modest fashion’ has been a defining style for the past decade. The trend for oversize silhouettes and loose layers has united fashion fans, religious and secular; it has been in part an attempt by western brands to buy into Read more

The Pakeha switch to the secular

Thursday, March 4th, 2021
secular religion

What are the key markers of contemporary religious faith and practice in New Zealand? Unlike Germany, there is no state support for the churches here. Unlike the US, piety is not worn on one’s sleeve. Attend a funeral or a wedding in New Zealand these days and what springs to mind is the incredible variety Read more

We’re losing our religion…but where do we go from here?

Monday, November 30th, 2020
religion

Since around about 1970 in Australia, the trend of people stating they have “No Religion” on the census has been constantly, significantly, increasing – from 1966 when the sliver started to first appear in any noteworthy fashion, to the 2016 census where it had reached 29.6% of the total population. In fact, the “not stated or unclear” is a Read more

Birth of liberal churches an example of religion working as it should

Monday, July 20th, 2020
religion working

It was reported earlier this week in the New Zealand Herald the “bisexual daughter of a conservative Christian pastor” has “teamed up with a gay minister to launch a new church where LGBTI people don’t have to hide”. The Auckland-based Open Table Ministries website says: “We would like to plant an Evangelical affirming Church with Read more

Religion remixed

Monday, July 6th, 2020
Religion

It is often said that we live in a godless age – that Western society is secular and “post-Christian.” In fact, something more nuanced is happening: we remain “religious” but spirituality is both personal and elusive – and outside the institutional status quo. We live in a godless age. Don’t we? The dominant cultural narrative Read more