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The myth of religious violence

The myth of religious violence | DHS Social Studies | Scoop.it
The popular belief that religion is the cause of the world’s bloodiest conflicts is central to our modern conviction that faith and politics should never mix. But, Karen Armstrong writes, the messy history of their separation suggests it was never so simple

 

After a bumpy beginning, secularism has undoubtedly been valuable to the west, but we would be wrong to regard it as a universal law. It emerged as a particular and unique feature of the historical process in Europe; it was an evolutionary adaptation to a very specific set of circumstances. In a different environment, modernity may well take other forms. Many secular thinkers now regard “religion” as inherently belligerent and intolerant, and an irrational, backward and violent “other” to the peaceable and humane liberal state – an attitude with an unfortunate echo of the colonialist view of indigenous peoples as hopelessly “primitive”, mired in their benighted religious beliefs. There are consequences to our failure to understand that our secularism, and its understanding of the role of religion, is exceptional. When secularisation has been applied by force, it has provoked a fundamentalist reaction – and history shows that fundamentalist movements which come under attack invariably grow even more extreme. The fruits of this error are on display across the Middle East: when we look with horror upon the travesty of Isis, we would be wise to acknowledge that its barbaric violence may be, at least in part, the offspring of policies guided by our disdain.

 

Tags: religion, culture, conflict, political, geopolitics.


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Jacob Crowell's curator insight, October 27, 2014 12:10 PM

Xenophobia is the fear of the other. The fear of other religions as being violent and extreme is perfectly described as xenophobia. Many of the developed countries like to simply religious regimes as violent, backwards, or oppressive because they do not fit the mold that they operate in. This article shows that the violence that occurs in the name of religion may actually be a response to the rest of the world trying to stop religions involvement in government. In the 1980s when the USSR tried to overthrow Afghanistan, religious fighters like Osama Bin Laden grew their influence and became more extreme as a result. Religion can be used as a force of good in politics but what ends up happening is because many view Religion and politics are realms that need to be separate, their efforts to keep them separated result in the creation of extremist and hatred. Developed countries are so quick to place the place on the other for violent religious regimes when they should be focusing on the part they played in helping create the problem. 

Edelin Espino's curator insight, December 5, 2014 12:13 PM

I would say that Religious Has nothing to do with war but there has been several religious problems in this world, so when it comes to war and religious I don't even know what to think, since God means peace no war. Religious is now separate from political issues, and this is perhaps a good idea but again, I don't know what to think about it.

Rescooped by Emily Ross Cook from Geography Education
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Struggle For Smarts? How Eastern And Western Cultures Tackle Learning

Struggle For Smarts? How Eastern And Western Cultures Tackle Learning | DHS Social Studies | Scoop.it
For the most part in American culture, intellectual struggle in school children is seen as an indicator of weakness, while in Eastern cultures it is not only tolerated, it is often used to measure emotional strength.

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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 2014 2:20 PM

In this article the resources or lack there of are a huge issue for the children in these schools. It makes me think of our society and the technology and other resources that we have aviable to and dont think twice about compared to this society that has nothing. This also triggered my mind of a prospective teacher as to thinking of the differnces between learning styles in the regions.

Malcolm Haines's curator insight, September 21, 2014 12:20 AM

This is an important time in world history for learning how we all learn. Ultimately East vs West on the cultural field will no longer apply.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 5:31 PM

Today the a lot of focus is being spent on the differences between western and eastern education. A large catalyst in this research is the rise of East Asian economies and the fear many in the west have that their nations are quickly becoming the new under dogs. While their is a difference in education methods one must also wonder if it partially comes down to the government and cultural importance placed on education. During the Cold War America placed a ton of interest and support on our education but after peace came our nation education declined across the board. This might be similar in East Asia while in stead of seeking to overcome the Russians they are seeking to over come their current place in the global community.