Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Surveying worldwide resurgence of religions

In 2004, British journalist John Micklethwait co-authored The Right Nation - Conservative Power in America with his intellectual partner Adrian Wooldridge, observing, studying and exploring the political landscape in the United States where rhetorical or heartfelt religious moralism is, for good or for ill, a major feature. Mr. Micklehwait has followed the broad subject up recently in the Economist - again with healthy doses of cynicism and sarcacism - with a worldwide survey on religion and public life which provides an opportunity or entry-point for serious and critical exchanges of ideas not only among theists but also between theists and atheists as well as those upholding belief-systems in between the polar extremities, like skeptics or agnostics. 'What is' , to be sure, is never synomunous with 'what ought to be' and the discrepancies between appearance and reality as well as form and substance have always to be factored into discourses on religion.


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