The phenomenon of religiously motivated violence is much on the minds of religious people around the world, whether in Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, South Asia, or the USA, where it has become a major theme in an unusually vitriolic presidential campaign. Non-religious people have also been considering it, often concluding that religion itself is the problem.
One fruit of my reflection is the essay, ‘Terrorism and religion: A link we must acknowledge, not deny,’ that Episcopal News Service published on its blog today. I take on two denial reflexes that many people have, especially if they are religious and want to detach religion from the violence committed in its name.
Bottom line: The link between religion and violence is real, and we in the religions need to wrestle with it.