March 11: Religion: source of peace or reason for conflict

Apologies as the audio file is unavailable for this program. We’ll work on restoring it.

It may seem strange with all that is happening in the world – from Egypt, Libya, Wisconsin and Michigan – that we’d talk today about religion as either a force for peace or reason for conflict. After a chance meeting with Usman Sadiq about an upcoming event to explore this question it seemed relevant and necessary. Today we’ll briefly discuss the event and who is organizing it and why.

Religion and politics are mixing today in ways we haven’t seen in the secular west for decades, and it is a volatile mix. But does it need to be? Generally speaking when people’s needs are met harmony of sorts is possible. In a global context, millions are left in poverty and suffer under repressive political regimes, and those millions can draw a direct line from the repression they suffer to global exploitation of resources such as oil and minerals and people, cheap labour. Religious leaders often fill a dual role as political leader and religious leader.

In Canada, the concept of the Social Gospel was a lived reality by Christians such as Nellie McClung, Tommy Douglas, J. S. Woodsworth, and Father Francis Coady and Father Jimmy Tompkins.

The social compact we had in Canada can be traced to the work of such people, and they stand in stark contrast to religious fundamentalists who seem eager to foment divisions between people and bring us back to the days when free thought and reason could not prevail. So – what about religion as a force for peace or conflict. We’ll talk about the upcoming conference with Ayoun Basharat, President and Usman Sadiq, Vice President of the Ahamdiyya Muslim Student Association here at UWindsor.

The Arabic transcription above the image of the sun is a verse from the Qur’an 3:123. “And Allah had [already] helped you at Badr when you were weak”

Is Religion a Source of Peace or Reason for Conflict?

Date: Thursday, March 17, 2011

Time: 6:00pm to 8:30pm

Location: CAW Student Centre, 2nd Floor, Ambassador Hall


Judaism – Jeffery Ableser (Rabbi in Windsor, ON)

Buddhism – Venerable TT Dhammo (Monk from Khmer Krom Buddhist Federation in Hamilton, On)

Christianity – Reverend Father Kevin George (Christian Scholar from St. Mark’s By-the-Lake)

Sikhism – Gurinder Singh

Islam – Ansar Raza (Scholar from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Toronto, On)

Music featured on today’s program:

Putumayo World Groove

Sarah Burton: Mayflower

Amnesty International Urgent Action:

Urge the Government of Alberta to respect the rights of the Lubicon Cree

Send a message to the Alberta government to stop approving new oil development licenses on Lubicon land without the consent of the Lubicon Cree.

Massive oil and gas development has almost wiped out the traditional economy and way of life of the Lubicon Cree. Billions of dollars of oil and gas has been taken from their land, yet the Lubicon Cree themselves have been plunged into poverty.

Click on image for more information

It’s time for us to say, “Enough is enough.” Lubicon rights must be protected before another generation of Lubicon youth grows up facing poverty and injustice.

Send an immediate message urging the Government of Alberta to respect Lubicon rights and ensure that any oil and gas development on Lubicon lands has Lubicon consent.

Windsor Guerilla Gardening Collective Sustainable Diet Once-a-Day Challenge #sustainablediet on Twitter!

Windsor Guerrilla Gardening Collective is challenging (even daring!) every environmentalist to adopt the “Sustainable Diet Once-A-Day Challenge”. The Once-A-Day challenge is eating food that was foraged, garden grown or

directly purchased from a local farmer, but eating that sustainable food at least once a day, 365 days a year. This doesn’t mean 100% of your diet will come from sustainable sources, but at least one item you eat everyday will! This effort will amount to a HUGE difference in how your diet impacts the earth.

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