Freedom of religion, and freedom of choosing religion [or choosing none], is one of the most valued freedoms for any human being.
The Russian Empire of the past was a country where the Orthodox Church was an official, State religion. It was not allowed to change religion and, more than that, people were punished severely for attempts to do so. Leaving the Holy Orthodoxy could lead to punishment, penalties, exile from the country, confiscation of all possessions, and even imprisonment.
I remember learning about the Soviet Union - my home country – by reading our Constitution and there was one very important thing: - a citizen is free to belong to ANY religion, or belong to none.
This is a treasured freedom of living in a secular state.
This is a guarantee that some monotheist fanatics will not stone you because of “denouncing G-d” or however they word it, if you decide to part ways with your previous monotheistic religion. This is a guarantee that people of all religions are equal before State.
The religious icons of motherhood are celebrated. The unique nature of American Buddhism is examined. And seven principles of interfaith communication and cooperation are described. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on news about faiths and religious communities around the world! All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
Hindus and Sikhs share in religious festivities. Myanma / Burmese Muslims are denied an opportunity to vote in their native country. And Jews prepare to celebrate Hanukkah around the world! It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on news about faiths and religious communities around the world. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
A Hindu describes her experience with the Oprah Winfrey Network's Belief. Women's rights activists are threatened by religious extremists in Myanmar. And the rise of Islamophobia within Britain is evaluated. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on faiths and religious communities from around the world. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
Russian pilgrims visit a remote forest shrine. Pew Research reveals the relationship between religious Americans and science. And the tricky balance between community tradition and assimilation is examined by an American Jews. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly take on news about faiths and religious communities from around the world. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!
I am finally reaching a point where I can begin to unpack my feelings concerning this year's Parliament of the World's Religions. On many levels this was a life changing experience, and one that I won't soon forget. I have read several other posts concerning the event as folks return home and back to daily life--taking the time to unpack their own feelings and put them in words. The majority of what has been written is positive, which I won't deny is a good space to hold for all the amazing occurrences and connections that were made. But allow me to be a dissenting voice for a moment...because despite all the positive aspects of this event, there is work yet to be done.
I'd like to start by quoting one of my favorite professors: "Stop focusing on what all religions have in common, and start doing the work of learning to live with the differences. Some religions are concerned with reaching the top of the mountain, others don't even care that there is a mountain." --Jacob Kinnard
A Jain writer expresses what it's like to live and work as one in the West. Pew Research rates the most racially diverse religious groups in America. And Alaa Murabit carries the fight forward for Muslim women in Libya and other parts of North Africa and the Middle East. It's Faithful Friday, our weekly segment on world religion. All this and more for the Pagan News Beagle!