• Bolivian Story: Enrique MacLean and Paola Recacoechea

    Our first trip out of La Paz after we arrived in Bolivia was to Lake Titicaca for a long weekend away. We spent a couple of nights on Isla del Sol in an eco-lodge, which is where we met Enrique and Paola. They became our very first friends here. During that weekend on Isla del Sol we enjoyed dinner together each evening, laughing and talking about everything from heavy metal to politics. Back in La Paz our friendship grew, including pot lucks at our home and sometimes Enrique and Jean would ‘jam’ together – Enrique on guitar and Jean on his clarinet. We have been enthralled by their comments and…

  • Muslim women in Western Society – to veil or not to veil

    On Friday night, over dinner, a group of friends started debating the topic of the French Senate recently passing a bill banning women wearing the Islamic veil (Niqab – full body covering) on public streets and other places.  I (CJG) spent some time listening to everyone’s views and soon realised that generally people are either… really confused what to think because they don’t think women should be forced to cover up but don’t feel quite right about a ban on a piece of clothing either.. or… they simply outright agree that the ban is a good thing. People who think that the veil should definitely be banned generally argue these…

  • Atheists and agnostics know more about the world’s religions than believers do

    I’m not the one who says that. I’m only repeating the findings of a recent study by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life, and that shocked many with the revelation that atheists and agnostics tend to know more about the world’s religions than believers do. Pew researchers asked more than 3,000 Americans 32 central questions about the Bible, Christianity and other world religions. On average, people who took the survey got half the answers wrong – and many even tripped on basic questions about their own faith. According to the study, Atheists and agnostics, Jews and Mormons are among the highest-scoring groups on a new survey of religious knowledge, outperforming…

  • ‘Burn the Koran’ day… what?!

    You’ve probably heard that  Terry Jones, an American pastor, vows to hold a national Koran burning event (see here) to mark the 9/11 events. Although he aims at tackling radical Islam, he doesn’t seem to notice that, by doing so, he doesn’t service tolerance and peace in the world – nor christian ideals! As if a pastor – even if heading the so-called ‘Dove World Outreach Centre’ – planning to burn the Koran was not an extremist himself.… Read the rest

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