“Africa is finding, just as it found its political and economic voice it’s also finding its theological voice, which oftentimes may be different in perspective,” says J. Peter Pham of the Atlantic Council’s Africa Center, “because of background, because of history, and because of the way they have interpreted revelation as different from what those in the West, in Europe, or North America, are used to or are necessarily comfortable with.” More
“The Martyrdom of the Báb commemorates the day when the Báb was finally taken before a firing squad in the northern Persian city of Tabriz,” says Hillary Chapman, a Baha’i educator. It’s “not a celebration, but a commemoration. But the use of the arts is very much encouraged as a way of kind of portraying the inner meaning of that day.” More
“The Baha’i belief is that in this day and age one of the meanings of the Kingdom of God is that all people will join together in a common spiritual belief. It may or may not be the same religion but a common spiritual understanding, or the phrase we use in Baha’i is one common faith.” More
This expression of Sufism, the mystical branch of Islam, “is creating an atmosphere to pray, and it’s an offering. I think it’s just a physical way of expressing this love for the divine, and in the whirling it becomes a meditation,” says Manjula Kumar, a program manager at the Smithsonian Institution. More
Many young Jains are finding that living in the modern world requires more flexibility than the anti-materialistic rules of their religion allow. “My grandparents said they don’t eat food at night. But going out with friends, having a social circle, we can’t be as strict as our grandparents,” says twenty-year-old Geetika Jain. More
“We empower national Masai to do the ministry. I didn’t start any of these churches. I’m not the leader of any of these churches. But we’ve trained these people so that they could move out and do it,” says Gary Woods, a missionary who has been preaching in Africa for 25 years. More
When disaster strikes, the character of a culture is revealed, and in Japan, perceptions of disaster are deeply rooted in traditional religious culture.