Reginald Bibby, Beyond the Gods and Back

By Dennis Gruending Sociologist Reginald Bibby is probably Canada's closest observer of religious trends. He has been polling on religious practices and attitudes since 1975 and has placed the numbers into context in several books beginning with Fragmented Gods in 1987. Bibby has just released another book called Beyond the Gods and Back, and he... Continue Reading →

Tony Blair: My Political Life

By Dennis Gruending Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is set to debate acerbic writer Christopher Hitchens at the Munk Centre at the University of Toronto on whether religion is a force for good or evil. Blair, of course, is the former three-term Labour prime minister who stunned most everyone by converting to Roman Catholicism... Continue Reading →

Mark Juergensmeyer on global rebellion and religion

By Dennis Gruending The American sociologist and professor of religious studies, Mark Juergensmeyer is known and respected for his investigations into global religion. His latest contribution is a book called Global Rebellion: Religious Challenges to the Secular State, from Christian Militias to al Queda. Juergensmeyer believes that the contemporary world is experiencing what he calls... Continue Reading →

Banning the veil

By Dennis Gruending France's National Assembly recently approved a bill that would make it illegal to wear in public garments such as the niqab or burqa, which incorporate a full-face veil. Similar laws are in force or being contemplated in Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain. Supporters of the legislation say that veils are a... Continue Reading →

Bible references found on gun sights

By Dennis Gruending  Coded biblical inscriptions have been found on the telescopic sights of rifles used by soldiers from several nations, including Canada, who are fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq. The company that supplied the inscribed weapons initially defended its actions unapologetically, and the response by the American military spokespersons has been under whelming. The... Continue Reading →

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