Open AccessEditorial
Introduction to “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue”
Religions 2018, 9(6), 199; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060199 -
Abstract
This special issue of Religions, entitled “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue”, brought together diverse international scholars and experts to think together on the intersection of African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology. One
[...] Read more.
This special issue of Religions, entitled “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue”, brought together diverse international scholars and experts to think together on the intersection of African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology. One of the aims of this special issue, and of the preceding conference (as stated in the call for papers), was to explore the complex relationship between the West’s pervasive (capitalistic) culture and epistemologies, and the current post-colonial context of (southern) Africa. As such, it provided a platform to engage questions regarding the relationship between colonialism, capitalism, and culture through both a philosophical and theological lens. The final publication of all articles in the special issue not only achieved the above set aims, but accomplished even more by opening up new creative pathways of thinking about the three traditions that were brought into conversation (and not only within their intersection). Full article
Open AccessArticle
Religious Commitment, Subjective Income, and Satisfaction towards the Functioning of Democracy in Latin America. A Mediation Analysis Model Based on Latinobarómetro
Religions 2018, 9(6), 198; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060198 -
Abstract
Religion and politics in Latin America maintain a close relation that, along with a historical background in European colonization, remains in force through both being institutionalized in some political parties or ideologies, and diluted in the societies that make up this region. This
[...] Read more.
Religion and politics in Latin America maintain a close relation that, along with a historical background in European colonization, remains in force through both being institutionalized in some political parties or ideologies, and diluted in the societies that make up this region. This paper examines the relation between three variables: religious commitment, subjective income, and satisfaction toward the functioning of Latin American democracies. To do so, we have constructed a hypothetical model based on a mediation analysis of 20,204 surveys that were collected by Latinobarómetro in 2016. The results confirm the existence of an indirect positive effect that is motivated by religious commitment, and mediates between perceived income and being satisfied with democracy in Latin America. In other words, as the respondents recognize that they have a greater subjective income and a greater religious commitment, they will probably manifest greater satisfaction toward the functioning of democracy. Such behavior highlights the referential nature of the religious experience by contributing to the emotional reinforcement of the social context perceived by Latin Americans. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Faith-Based Mentoring of Ex-Felons in Higher Education: Colson Scholars Reflect on Their Transitions
Religions 2018, 9(6), 197; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060197 -
Abstract
This qualitative study employs the framework of Schlossberg’s Transition Theory to offer readers an introduction into recently-conducted research on ex-felons transitioning into, through, and out of higher education within the context of the Colson Scholarship program at Wheaton College1, in Wheaton,
[...] Read more.
This qualitative study employs the framework of Schlossberg’s Transition Theory to offer readers an introduction into recently-conducted research on ex-felons transitioning into, through, and out of higher education within the context of the Colson Scholarship program at Wheaton College1, in Wheaton, Illinois. Through the material gathered from personal interviews of six completed Colson Scholars, faith-based mentors were consistently seen as significant sources of support in each stage of the college-going transition. Faith-based mentors played an important role in the outcomes of, specifically, faith-worldview development and emotional development. This article seeks to illuminate the problem of the lack of supportive mentors for ex-offender populations in our communities, and to illustrate how those mentors might be found in faith-based organizations, institutions, and houses of worship, as Johnson (Johnson 2011) asserted and also what gains could result from the involvement of faith-based mentors in the lives of correctional populations post-release. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Return to the Sacred: The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham and Contemporary Christianity
Religions 2018, 9(6), 196; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060196 -
Abstract
Once one of the most popular Catholic pilgrimage sites in England, The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, now under the care of the Anglican Church, operates as a site of devotion, but it also operates as a site of memory. In this
[...] Read more.
Once one of the most popular Catholic pilgrimage sites in England, The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, now under the care of the Anglican Church, operates as a site of devotion, but it also operates as a site of memory. In this essay, I will argue that, in this place of memory, where pre-Reformation worship meets contemporary devotion and tourism, we find insights for the contemporary church. The Protestant Reformation contributed to the desacralization of the world. Later events such as the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, and the Scientific Revolution of the past two centuries have shifted Western attitudes about the natural world even further away from the sacred. However, every year, thousands of visitors come to Walsingham. What draws them? What are they seeking? To consider what a shrine such as Walsingham might mean to a pilgrim, I will examine Philip earl of Arundel’s poetic lament at the destruction of the shrine, William Shakespeare’s nostalgia for the sacred feminine in The Winter’s Tale, and Robert Lowell’s 1947 poetic treatment of Walsingham. I will argue that focusing on sacred spaces, particularly those associated with the sacred feminine can benefit contemporary Catholics and Protestants. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Will God Make Me Rich? An Investigation into the Relationship between Membership in Charismatic Churches, Wealth, and Women’s Empowerment in Ghana
Religions 2018, 9(6), 195; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060195 -
Abstract
In recent decades, there has been an explosion in the growth of Pentecostal churches in Ghana, many of which preach that belief in God will translate into material wealth for both men and women. While some have argued that women in these churches
[...] Read more.
In recent decades, there has been an explosion in the growth of Pentecostal churches in Ghana, many of which preach that belief in God will translate into material wealth for both men and women. While some have argued that women in these churches are likely to be more empowered due to female leadership and focus on the individual, others have argued that this may not translate to the typical congregant’s experience. After all, members of the Pentecostal church subscribe to the belief that wives should “submit to their husbands” (Biblia n.d.). In this study, I used the 2014 Demographic Health Survey to directly test whether women who identify as Pentecostal/Charismatic/Evangelical have a higher level of empowerment as measured by autonomy in decision making. I found that they exhibit significantly less decision-making power than other Christian women in making big household purchases and on their own healthcare. This exists both before and after controlling for wealth. Thus, the notion that Pentecostal women are more empowered than other Christians appears to be misguided. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Transforming the Conversation: What Is Liberation and from What Is It Liberating Us? A Critical Response to “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue”
Religions 2018, 9(6), 194; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060194 -
Abstract
The Religions special issue, “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue,” addresses the concern over the present postcolonial context in which African persons and societies find themselves. The issue attempts to gain a further understanding of
[...] Read more.
The Religions special issue, “Transforming Encounters and Critical Reflection: African Thought, Critical Theory, and Liberation Theology in Dialogue,” addresses the concern over the present postcolonial context in which African persons and societies find themselves. The issue attempts to gain a further understanding of this context through a dialogue between these three disciplines, but what emerges from this attempt? As a critical response to the issue as a whole, this article will reveal that each author presents different yet converging perspectives on the questions: ‘what is liberation and from what are we being liberated?’ This article begins by phrasing this question through Frantz Fanon’s critique on the postcolony, where he sees that the same logic—what Schalk Gerber’s article calls ‘the logic of the colonizer’—is still employed in the postcolony. This article unpacks the entanglement created by this logic and how each author addresses it in different ways. Importantly, this is not a review of each article; rather, it seeks to reveal the narrative created by this interdisciplinary dialogue in order to further the conversation on oppression and liberation in an African context. In so doing, it reveals how each author addresses the concept of liberation or freedom and where they partially (or perhaps provisionally) agree that liberation entails embodied communal responsibility as being-with others, the importance of transparent dialogue, the need for new rationalities to enter the discussion of African self-determination, while also highlighting the dangers of appropriating these new rationalities when bringing them into an African context or when moving theory into praxis. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Religion and Crime Studies: Assessing What Has Been Learned
Religions 2018, 9(6), 193; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060193 -
Abstract
This paper provides a review of the literature that assesses the relationship between religion and crime. Research on the relationship between religion and crime indicates that certain aspects of religion reduces participation in criminal activity. A review of the literature indicates religion reduces
[...] Read more.
This paper provides a review of the literature that assesses the relationship between religion and crime. Research on the relationship between religion and crime indicates that certain aspects of religion reduces participation in criminal activity. A review of the literature indicates religion reduces participation in criminal activity in two broad ways. First, religion seems to operate at a micro level. Studies have pointed to how religious beliefs are associated with self-control. Second, researches have examined the social control aspects of religion. In particular, how factors such as level of participation and social support from such participation reduces criminal activity. Likewise, findings suggest that although there has been a sizable number of studies and diverse interests of researchers examining the religion/crime nexus, the research has not identified which aspects of religion have the strongest influence on crime reduction. In addition, the specific ways in which these factors are associated with crime reduction have not been comprehensively identified. Similarly, more than 40 years of empirical scholarship suggests that religion suppresses criminal behavior. Nevertheless, these findings remain controversial as the literature neither accentuates the mechanisms of religion responsible for suppressing criminal behavior, nor does the literature reject the spuriousness of the religion-crime association relative to mediating effects of self-control and social control. Finally, our review suggests that methodological constraints infringe on the capacity for sociological and criminological to accurately ascertain the validity of the religion-crime nexus, often generating mixed or inconclusive findings on the religion-crime association. Our paper concludes with recommendations for future empirical scholarship that examines the religion-crime nexus. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Sincere Performance in Pentecostal Megachurch Music
Religions 2018, 9(6), 192; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060192 -
Abstract
Drawing on the work of Webb Keane and Joel Robbins in the anthropology of Christianity, furnished with the influential work of Charles Hirschkind in the anthropology of Islam, and the ethnographic studies of Tom Wagner and Mark Jennings on Pentecostal worship music, this
[...] Read more.
Drawing on the work of Webb Keane and Joel Robbins in the anthropology of Christianity, furnished with the influential work of Charles Hirschkind in the anthropology of Islam, and the ethnographic studies of Tom Wagner and Mark Jennings on Pentecostal worship music, this article critically examines ideas of sincerity in the musical practices of Pentecostal megachurches. Making use of ethnographic data from research on congregational music in South Africa, including interviews with a variety of Pentecostal musicians, this article argues that the question of Protestant sincerity, understood following Keane as emphasizing individual moral autonomy and suspicion of external material religious forms for expressing one’s inner state, is particularly acute in the case of the Hillsong megachurch. Employing the full array of spectacular possibilities made available by the contemporary culture industry, Hillsong churches centralize cultural production and standardize musical performance whilst simultaneously emphasizing individual religious experience. It is argued that Pentecostal megachurches seek to realize a form of sincere mimicry grounded in learned and embodied practices. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Pratyabhijñā Apoha Theory, Shannon–Weaver Information, Saussurean Structure, and Peircean Interpretant Agency
Religions 2018, 9(6), 191; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060191 -
Abstract
This paper builds upon my earlier studies in interpreting interculturally how the Kashmiri nondual Śaiva thinkers Upaladeva (c. 900–950 CE) and Abhinavagupta (c. 950–1020 CE) in their Pratyabhijñā philosophical theology respond to and reinterpret the Buddhist semantic theory of reference as the exclusion
[...] Read more.
This paper builds upon my earlier studies in interpreting interculturally how the Kashmiri nondual Śaiva thinkers Upaladeva (c. 900–950 CE) and Abhinavagupta (c. 950–1020 CE) in their Pratyabhijñā philosophical theology respond to and reinterpret the Buddhist semantic theory of reference as the exclusion of the inapplicable (anyāpoha). It engages the issues in the Pratyabhijñā debate with the Buddhists, with the interrelations of Claude Shannon and Warren Weaver’s theory of Information, Saussurean structuralist semiotics, and Peircean pragmatic semiotics. Full article
Open AccessArticle
An Imperfect Alliance: Feminism and Contemporary Female Buddhist Monasticisms
Religions 2018, 9(6), 190; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060190 -
Abstract
This essay lays the elaborate textile of feminist discourse alongside the equally rich fabric of contemporary female Buddhist monasticisms, taking note of places the latter has pulled threads from the former, but also pointing out the ways in which female monastics lead agentive,
[...] Read more.
This essay lays the elaborate textile of feminist discourse alongside the equally rich fabric of contemporary female Buddhist monasticisms, taking note of places the latter has pulled threads from the former, but also pointing out the ways in which female monastics lead agentive, creative, and sometimes rebellious female lives that in subtle and not so subtle ways resist the label “feminist,” or contribute a new motif or fiber to the feminist weave. Case study reports on two innovative Buddhist female communities in Malaysia and Nepal, chosen because they offer examples of innovations within the context of Buddhist female monasticism that are interestingly complex as examples of Buddhist feminist consciousness, will serve to make visible a few particular female Buddhist monastic perspectives. Respectfully called in as interlocutors and cotheorizers, the monastic persons described here offer religious perspectives on norm-following, agency, and coalition-building that expand the feminist frame. Full article
Open AccessArticle
God and Guns: Examining Religious Influences on Gun Control Attitudes in the United States
Religions 2018, 9(6), 189; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060189 -
Abstract
Mass shootings in the United States have generated significant media coverage and public concern, invigorating debates over gun control. Media coverage and academic research on gun control attitudes and reactions to mass shootings have paid little attention to the role of religion. Recent
[...] Read more.
Mass shootings in the United States have generated significant media coverage and public concern, invigorating debates over gun control. Media coverage and academic research on gun control attitudes and reactions to mass shootings have paid little attention to the role of religion. Recent research sheds light on the complex relationship between religion and guns, including higher rates of gun ownership and stronger opposition to gun control among white evangelical Protestants. Using nationally representative survey data, this study examines the relationship between religious identity, gun ownership, and support for a range of gun control policies, including proposed remedies for preventing mass shootings. Compared with individuals from other religious traditions, evangelical Protestants are most opposed to stricter gun control laws and enforcement, even with statistical controls for gun ownership and demographic characteristics. Rather, they favor individualistic solutions and putting more emphasis on religious values in their social surroundings. I discuss how these findings reflect the cultural tools evangelical Protestants use to construct their understandings of social problems, including gun violence, and the broader implications for gun policy in the United States. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Ifa Fuyū’s Search for Okinawan-Japanese Identity
Religions 2018, 9(6), 188; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060188 -
Abstract
This paper focuses on the crucial role played by Ifa Fuyū, the “father of Okinawan studies,” in articulating ideas related to Okinawan-Japanese identity. Starting with a brief overview of Ifa’s life and work, especially his pioneering work in Ryukyuan linguistics, the author observes
[...] Read more.
This paper focuses on the crucial role played by Ifa Fuyū, the “father of Okinawan studies,” in articulating ideas related to Okinawan-Japanese identity. Starting with a brief overview of Ifa’s life and work, especially his pioneering work in Ryukyuan linguistics, the author observes how Ifa’s progressive and reformist perspective shapes his discourse on religion, language, and history. The author then moves into analyzing a recently discovered wartime article that Ifa wrote in 1945, when he learned in Tokyo that the battle of Okinawa broke out between Japan and the U.S. Ifa’s controversial article shows how a strong sense of nationalistic identity was imposed upon Okinawans, on the one hand, while also revealing Ifa’s intention to fight prejudice toward Okinawans, on the other. This leads to the broader context of Japan’s emergence as a “nation state.” Problematizing the question of identity, the author argues that alternative histories of Japan should be taken into account for its proper understanding. Comparing Ifa’s view with historian Amino Yoshihiko’s thesis on Japan and modernization, the author envisions how identity can be seen as a growing network of plural identities rather than an abstractly imagined monolithic identity. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
God’s Presence within Henry’s Phenomenology of Life: The Phenomenological Revelation of God in Opposition to Plantinga’s Affirmation of God’s Existence
Religions 2018, 9(6), 187; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060187 -
Abstract
The recent debate on the notorious Anselmian proof of God’s existence, usually called the “ontological argument”, is placed within an analytic approach, since Alvin Plantinga revisited this argument beginning in the sixties and especially during the seventies. At the same time, Michel Henry
[...] Read more.
The recent debate on the notorious Anselmian proof of God’s existence, usually called the “ontological argument”, is placed within an analytic approach, since Alvin Plantinga revisited this argument beginning in the sixties and especially during the seventies. At the same time, Michel Henry contested this proof, situating the debate in a completely different area of philosophy. Henry’s critique does not concern the question of logical validity or the matter of rational justification of religious belief. Rather, Henry focuses on the way existence is conceived. In so doing, his phenomenology of life shows the difference between affirming God’s existence (in every “possible world”) and accessing God’s presence inside the ego’s subjectivity. In this article, I will try to show how Henry’s way of proceeding makes self-life-experience a legitimate foundation for a belief in God’s presence (not only the simple intellectual affirmation of His existence). Full article
Open AccessArticle
Used Sources of Spiritual Growth for Spanish University Students
Religions 2018, 9(6), 186; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060186 -
Abstract
Although some research has suggested means of promoting spiritual development in higher education, no systematic studies or literature reviews have been conducted to know what sources are most used for the spiritual growth of university students. This aspect was studied in a sample
[...] Read more.
Although some research has suggested means of promoting spiritual development in higher education, no systematic studies or literature reviews have been conducted to know what sources are most used for the spiritual growth of university students. This aspect was studied in a sample of 309 Spanish university students (Mean age = 21.40, range 18–25). The used sources were (in descending order) as follows: the practice of a virtuous behavior, cognitive-reflexive, nature-based, cultural, and religious sources. Women showed a higher use of cognitive-reflective and virtuous behavior-based sources. Age was related only and negatively to the use of religious sources. These results are consistent with previous studies indicating a greater religiosity in women and a lesser importance of religion in contemporary society and, particularly, in the life of young adults. However, taken as a whole, they indicate the importance of sociological and cultural aspects, in particular of the movement from traditional religiosity to religious indifference and dissatisfaction with institutional religion and/or toward spiritual movements linked to humanistic religions and spiritualities of life. It also points out the need to use a variety of strategies to foster the spiritual development of students. Full article
Open AccessArticle
The Case of Hirose Akira: The Ethical Predicament of a Japanese Buddhist Youth during World War II
Religions 2018, 9(6), 185; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060185 -
Abstract
The Japanese Buddhist clergy’s collaboration with the Japanese war machine during the Fifteen Year War (1931–1945) is notorious. Yet the struggles of ordinary lay Buddhist youths during World War II remain less publicized. This article examines the case of a young Shinshū Buddhist
[...] Read more.
The Japanese Buddhist clergy’s collaboration with the Japanese war machine during the Fifteen Year War (1931–1945) is notorious. Yet the struggles of ordinary lay Buddhist youths during World War II remain less publicized. This article examines the case of a young Shinshū Buddhist soldier, Hirose Akira, 廣瀬明 (1919–1947), and scrutinizes the diary he kept between 1939 and 1946. Mobilized between February 1942 and January 1945, Hirose became increasingly disillusioned, especially when he witnessed injustices and the officers’ thoughtlessness in ordering junior soldiers to make sacrifices while enjoying their privileges. His diary reveals an early skepticism toward the Japanese embrace of expansionism and the hypocrisy of its justifications for the war of aggression waged against China and Asia as a whole. Independently from the battle’s fate, by 1944 Hirose considered that Japan was already defeated because of what he saw as “her own people’s ego and selfishness.” Full article
Open AccessArticle
“A Web of Subversive Friends”: New Monasticism in the United States and South Africa
Religions 2018, 9(6), 184; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060184 -
Abstract
This article analyzes new monastic efforts to engage with systemic inequality in the United States and South Africa, arguing for the importance of the concept of friendship to new monastic social justice efforts. Growing in popularity during the 2000s, new monasticism is a
[...] Read more.
This article analyzes new monastic efforts to engage with systemic inequality in the United States and South Africa, arguing for the importance of the concept of friendship to new monastic social justice efforts. Growing in popularity during the 2000s, new monasticism is a term used to describe Christians who are experimenting with forms of community and subject formation that take as their inspiration earlier monastic or other Christian socialist/communitarian movements. Drawing on qualitative research conducted with two South African groups inspired by new monasticism, I show how building relationships with economic and racial others is central to new monastic visions of social change. New monastics emphasize the importance of deep, committed, authentic, relationships—friendships—as the primary means of surmounting race and class divides. Building on the insights of Michael Emerson and Christian Smith in Divided by Faith, I argue that how new monastics conceptualize friendship simultaneously draws on and subverts traditional evangelical approaches to social engagement. Although new monastics are similar to evangelicals in that they attach central importance to interpersonal relationships, new monastics are distinct in that they explicitly connect the value of relationship building to practices of self-transformation and social critique. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Spirituality and Wellbeing in the Context of a Study on Suicide Prevention in North India
Religions 2018, 9(6), 183; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060183 -
Abstract
The connection between spirituality and wellbeing, including its benefits for physical and mental health, has been recognized in the Eastern cultures for a very long time, although the sharp division between science and religion has caused, for the most part, its neglect inWestern
[...] Read more.
The connection between spirituality and wellbeing, including its benefits for physical and mental health, has been recognized in the Eastern cultures for a very long time, although the sharp division between science and religion has caused, for the most part, its neglect inWestern cultures until recently. Nevertheless, limited efforts have been made to explore the impact of spirituality and religion on wellbeing, including the prevention of suicide. We begin with an overview of the literature on religiousness, spirituality, and health and wellbeing. Further, we present a novel study focused on a sample of 160 Indian students from a spiritually oriented university in North India with the aim to understand how spirituality affects their lives and wellbeing and their views about suicide. Our results show that spirituality, generally, has a positive impact on participants’ wellbeing with a potential protective effect against suicidal behavior, although more research on spiritual/religious beliefs as a source of difficulties is warranted. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Existential and Virtuous Effects of Religiosity on Mental Health and Aggressiveness among Offenders
Religions 2018, 9(6), 182; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060182 -
Abstract
Although prior research tends to show that religion has a salutary effect on mental health and a preventive effect on crime, studies explaining the religious effect, particularly those on offenders, have been limited. To address the issue, we examine whether religiosity is inversely
[...] Read more.
Although prior research tends to show that religion has a salutary effect on mental health and a preventive effect on crime, studies explaining the religious effect, particularly those on offenders, have been limited. To address the issue, we examine whether religiosity is inversely related to negative emotions and aggressiveness among prison inmates. Additionally, we assess whether the relationships are attributable to an inmate’s sense of meaning and purpose in life and/or their virtues. Specifically, we hypothesize that religiosity is inversely related to feelings of depression and anxiety and the intention of engaging in interpersonal aggression. We also hypothesize these relationships to be mediated by existential belief in life’s meaning and purpose and virtues (compassion, forgiveness, gratitude, purpose of God, and gratitude to God). We tested our hypotheses using survey data collected from a random sample of male inmates from three prisons in Texas, applying latent-variable structural equation modeling. We found that the existential belief explained the effect of religiosity on negative emotional states and intended aggression. In addition, forgiveness and gratitude mediated the effect on state anxiety, whereas purpose in God and gratitude to God mediated the effect on state depression. Substantive and practical implications of our findings are discussed. Full article
Open AccessArticle
“Getting Along” in Parkchester: A New Era in Jewish–Irish Relations in New York City 1940–1970
Religions 2018, 9(6), 181; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060181 -
Abstract
The history of conflict between New York City’s Irish Americans and east European Jews dates back to the close of the 19th century. They disputed over jobs, union memberships, housing, and frequently over politics. These conflicts crescendoed exponentially in the decade or more
[...] Read more.
The history of conflict between New York City’s Irish Americans and east European Jews dates back to the close of the 19th century. They disputed over jobs, union memberships, housing, and frequently over politics. These conflicts crescendoed exponentially in the decade or more of the Great Depression in Gaelic neighborhoods, now more than ever, the word on the street was that the Jews were taking over. The rhetoric and organizations of Michigan-based radio preacher Father Charles Coughlin gave voice and activism to local frustrations. However, in 1940, within a new neighborhood built in the Bronx that attracted a majority of Irish and a large proportion of Jews, there was no organized anti-Semitism, no outbursts of violence, or even significant complaints that more callow Jews were being roughed up in the streets or play areas. If animosities existed, negative feelings were kept within families and were not expressed in daily youthful encounters. Why life in Parkchester was so different is the conceit of this study. Its community history from 1940–1970s constituted a turning point in their previously-contested ethnic group relationship while what went on as Jews and the Irish ‘got along’ marks off the limits of conviviality of that time. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Does Religion/Spirituality Modify the Association of Stressful Life Events and Suicidal Ideation in Australian Men?
Religions 2018, 9(6), 180; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel9060180 -
Abstract
In a large population cohort of Australian men, we previously observed that stressful life events were associated with increased suicidal ideation (SI). Many stressful life events, such as relationship breakdown and financial difficulties, occur frequently, yet most men who experience them do not
[...] Read more.
In a large population cohort of Australian men, we previously observed that stressful life events were associated with increased suicidal ideation (SI). Many stressful life events, such as relationship breakdown and financial difficulties, occur frequently, yet most men who experience them do not have suicidal thoughts. There is some evidence that religious belief may be protective against suicidal behaviour. This study examined if attendance of religious service and/or perceived importance of religion/spirituality to participants modifies the association between stressful life events and suicidal thinking. Our analysis included 10,588 men who were aged 18 years or older who participated in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Male Health (Ten to Men), a national cohort study of Australian males. The study compared demographic, protective and risk factors for four subgroups: No SI, Remitted SI, New SI, and Chronic SI between Wave 1 (October 2013 to July 2014) and Wave 2 (November 2015 to May 2016) of the study and conducted logistic regression for these four outcomes. The study found a protective effect for attendance of religious services for the onset of New SI at Wave 2. Importance of religion/spirituality was positively related to Chronic SI. There were no effects of service attendance or importance for any of the other SI outcomes. We discuss results of the study in relation to social connection and broader contextual factors, such as secularization. Full article
Figures

Figure 1