Religion can play a positive role in peacebuilding, according to the latest research from the Institute for Economics and peace. The report, Five Key Questions Answered on the Link between Peace and Religion, provides a statistical analysis about the empirical link between peace and religion.
Current events dominating global media coverage stand in contrast to the positive role that religion can play in building peace. Some of the world’s most renowned peace advocates are deeply religious individuals, including Bishop Desmond Tutu, Martin Luther King Jr, and Mahatma Gandhi.
Religion is a common bond shared by people of diverse social backgrounds. In this way, religion can play a pivotal role peacebuilding, transcending racial, cultural and ethnic differences. As demonstrated in the graph above, religion can lead to social cohesion which unites communities and increases civic engagement. This creates more inclusive and familiar social groupings, which in turn improves tolerance and understanding between different religious groups.
While the competition between different religious groups is often emphasised, there are a number of initiatives and programs which aim to increase engagement between opposing religions. Inter-faith dialogue is one of the most powerful tools in conflict resolution. Organisations like Religions for Peace have worked all over the globe to resolve conflict, including reconciliation efforts in South Africa and Sierra Leone.
For a full answer to the question: ‘Can Religion Play A Positive Role In Peace-building?’ download the Religion and Peace Report and skip to page 21.
‘Religion and Peace’ is a global statistical analysis of the empirical link between religion and peace. The report answers five key questions based on common themes featured in popular media. The five questions addressed are:
Question 1: Is religion the main cause of conflict today?
For more information, download the full report: Five Key Questions Answered on the Link between Peace and Religion.
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Vision of Humanity is an initiative of the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP). IEP have offices in New York and Sydney. For more specific inquiries related to the peace indexes and research, please contact IEP directly.