‘Religion and Democracy: Thursdays, 1:00-4:00 pm, Divinity School, 2nd floor.’ The title of this class sounded intriguing and right up my alley. We would study how religion affects democracy, and vice versa. Yet, sitting in lecture during week 3, I admit: I didn’t really understand the point of this class. What was the question we [...]
This week, I’ve been navigating multiple spiritual and religious identities. Growing up in a Roman Catholic tradition, I feel quite connected to the rituals surrounding Ash Wednesday and Lent. My father still asks me what I plan to “give up” for lent, and I do try to be more mindful during this time of reflection. [...]
As my first quarter of graduate school comes to an end, I thought I would share a few things that struck me these past few months. I do not wish to make sweeping claims about the interfaith movement, but simply hope to apply what I study to my work as an activist in the interfaith [...]
Last week, I sat on a panel of eight students, faculty and religious leaders representing different faith traditions’ views on the subject of religion and politics. More specifically, we discussed how our faiths do or do not determine how we vote. As a practicing Buddhist, I struggled immensely with this question. At first thought, Buddhism [...]
My grandmother always wanted to be an archaeologist. She grew up in a military family, moving from base to base, all the while delving into books that illuminated the ancient world. When I was young, she would find “fossils” in her backyard for us to examine, including a recently deceased mouse on one occasion. My grandmother never got the [...]
Jem is a first year M.A. student at the University of Chicago studying Islam and pre-Islamic religions in the Ancient Near East. She practices Mahayana Buddhism and interfaith activism.