Are we in the midst of a new war of religion?
Post 9/11, the ‘war on terror’ was cast as a battle between Islam and the Judeo-Christian values of the west. But as religion fades in the west, it continues to fortify its political power elsewhere. So what’s next? Are we heading towards a world where secularism will prevail, or will religion remain a vital part of human identity?
Join acclaimed scholar of religion and #1 New York Times best-selling author Reza Aslan to discover how this war of religion might end.
This event is chaired by Julia Baird.
The fact of the matter is that people around the world, are becoming more religious, not less religious. The more globalization begins to deteriorate our national identities, the more religious identities are beginning to step into the vacuum, and become a greater force, in how communities around the world are identifying themselves.
The basic assumption of the secular society is that modernity overcomes religion.
Unless there is some kind of spiritual revolution that can keep abreast of our technological genius, it is unlikely that we will save our planet. A purely rational education will not suffice.
Throughout human history, religion has been a force both for boundless good and for unspeakable evil.
Presented by the UNSW Centre for Ideas and Carriageworks.
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Reza Aslan is an internationally renowned writer, commentator and religious scholar, whose bestselling books, Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth and No God but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam and packed lectures have propelled him to the frontlines in the fight against white nationalism. Aslan argues that it is fear—organised and well-funded—that perpetuates bigotry and victimises us all. Fear can be fought, but it requires us to come together as a people: “education alone doesn’t change minds,” says Reza in his TED talk, “relationships change minds; forming the relationships that help you see beyond the symbols that separate us; that ultimately, we’re all the same.”
Julia Baird is a journalist, broadcaster and author based in Sydney, Australia. She hosts The Drum on ABC TV and writes columns for The Sydney Morning Herald and The New York Times. Her writing has appeared in a range of publications including Newsweek, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Guardian, The Good Weekend, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Sun-Herald, The Monthly and Harper's Bazaar. Her biography of Queen Victoria was published simultaneously in the US, UK and Australia in 2016, and has been a critical and commercial success.