Religions2015, 6(2), 642-656; doi:10.3390/rel6020642 - published 21 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This paper examines the concept of “diversity” as mentioned in the Qur’an and how commonalities in diverse religions may be used as a model for civilizational dialogue towards achieving harmony. This study reveals that religious and cultural diversity are laws of nature which cannot be changed while the concept of “identity” is a contested issue in modern discourse. Results also show that peace may be established among diverse religions through their commonalities and the best way to exploit these commonalities and to reduce the religious divide is through civilizational dialogue. The Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and other methods for changing the nature of religious differences and reaching a consensus—thus arriving at a peaceful co-existence—are also discussed. It was found that people are often misguided or divided in the name of religion and culture, despite the fact that the philosophy of every religion is based on peace and harmony.
Religions2015, 6(2), 626-637; doi:10.3390/rel6020626 - published 11 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Only with difficulty do modern readers grasp the full import of Augustine’s confession, “Restless is our heart, until it rests in you”, or seriously consider that it might be true. An unexpected remedy is to be found in reading Thomas Hobbes, who introduces and defends the view of happiness that is now commonly accepted without argument. According to Hobbes, human beings find their happiness not in a single, supreme good but in many objects, the securing of which requires a lifelong quest for power. But this teaching, influential and revealing though it is, fails to satisfy. Meditating on that dissatisfaction is a first step towards more serious engagement with Augustine.
Religions2015, 6(2), 614-625; doi:10.3390/rel6020614 - published 11 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The addiction recovery metaphor of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and the sin/salvation metaphor of Protestant heritage have a lot more in common than people realize. On the surface, of course, it seems that the addiction recovery process is quite the opposite of what is assumed to be a religious approach to addiction. Many assume that religion takes a moralistic or judgmental attitude to addiction, focusing on intentional wrong-doing, lack of will power, or sin, i.e., offending God, self and others. Instead, from a theological perspective, sin and addiction are not the opposites generally assumed. The identification of alienation from God, and the focus on spirituality and healing are core issues for both concepts. Understanding this congruence can facilitate a very productive conversation between theologians, religious believers, and recovering persons.
Religions2015, 6(2), 594-613; doi:10.3390/rel6020594 - published 8 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Nurses and health care professionals should have an active role in meeting the spiritual needs of patients in collaboration with the family and the chaplain. Literature criticizes the impaired holistic care because the spiritual dimension is often overlooked by health care professionals. This could be due to feelings of incompetence due to lack of education on spiritual care; lack of inter-professional education (IPE); work overload; lack of time; different cultures; lack of attention to personal spirituality; ethical issues and unwillingness to deliver spiritual care. Literature defines spiritual care as recognizing, respecting, and meeting patients’ spiritual needs; facilitating participation in religious rituals; communicating through listening and talking with clients; being with the patient by caring, supporting, and showing empathy; promoting a sense of well-being by helping them to find meaning and purpose in their illness and overall life; and referring them to other professionals, including the chaplain/pastor. This paper outlines the systematic mode of intra-professional theoretical education on spiritual care and its integration into their clinical practice; supported by role modeling. Examples will be given from the author’s creative and innovative ways of teaching spiritual care to undergraduate and post-graduate students. The essence of spiritual care is being in doing whereby personal spirituality and therapeutic use of self contribute towards effective holistic care. While taking into consideration the factors that may inhibit and enhance the delivery of spiritual care, recommendations are proposed to the education, clinical, and management sectors for further research and personal spirituality to ameliorate patient holistic care.
Religions2015, 6(2), 566-593; doi:10.3390/rel6020566 - published 5 May 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In this paper, I argue that the implementation of syariah is best understood as a heterotopia by women in Aceh, Indonesia. The current debates over the role of syariah for women in Acehnese society focus on either a secular human rights critique of non-liberal norms that restrict the rights and freedom of women or a religiously prescribed defense of communal norms that protect women and society. Based on interviews, I identify three variants of how women conceive of and inhabit syariah in Aceh. Two of these variants are underrepresented in the current academic literature on syariah in Aceh. Two key distinctions are drawn between blueprint and iconoclastic utopian thought and state-centric and non-state-centric models of political legitimacy. Rethinking syariah as a “socio-spatial dialectic” allows for all three variants of syariah existing simultaneously as a heterotopia in Acehnese society.