Articles on spirituality

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Researchers have identified six broad groups of young people categorised by their views on religion and spirituality. Shutterstock

New research shows Australian teens have complex views on religion and spirituality

A new study reveals Australian teenagers do not relate to established ideas on religion and spirituality. Instead, they fall into six broad groups and show great tolerance for others' ideas.
The movement away from religion towards “spirituality” reflects a desire to leave behind hierarchical understandings of religion towards a more socially liberal one. Ben White/unsplash

Millennials abandon hope for religion but revere human rights

Canada is increasingly moving towards a secular culture. "Spiritual but not religious" has become our new norm -- bringing with it ideas of mutual respect and protection for marginalized identities.
People carry posters during this Feb. 2017 rally against President Donald Trump’s executive order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority nations, in New York’s Times Square. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki, File)

Religious discrimination is a reason to fight Trump’s travel ban

In the shadow of Trump-era cross-border discrimination, an early-stage scholar reflects on the meaning of religious diversity and his act of resistance by boycotting conference travel to the U.S.
Increasingly, North American millennials identify as spiritual as opposed to religious. To them, part of this spirituality means being compassionate, empathetic and open-hearted. (Shutterstock)

What does it mean to be spiritual?

Millennial Canadians are identifying themselves as spiritual, but not religious. This entails the desire to develop inner knowledge and to embody the virtues of compassion, empathy and open-heartedness.
The Virgin Mary may not be able to pull Brazil out of a deep recession, but her church-sponsored house calls do wonders to ease economic malaise among participating Catholic families. Pilar Olivares/Reuters

This old Catholic ritual is giving Brazil’s economy a small boost, one Virgin Mary statuette at a time

For a century, Brazil's Catholic Church has sent holy statues out to parishioners' homes. A new study finds that these visits create a local subeconomy, benefitting families and the church.
Sports can push people to come to terms with suffering as well as success. Reuters/China Daily

Why sport is a spiritual experience – and failure can help

'Sport is my religion' isn't just a cute bumper sticker. Athletes create rituals, endure suffering and face their own mortality. Under the right circumstances, sport can be a powerful – and secular – spiritual practice.
Mysteries of the mind. Brain via www.shutterstock.com.

Oliver Sacks, the brain and God

Oliver Sacks, the celebrated neurologic storyteller who died at the end of August at age 82, once described himself as “strongly atheist by disposition.” Sacks could write sensitively about religion, including…

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