Can God Intervene?: How Religion Explains Natural Disasters by Gary Stern

By Gary Stern

The dying and devastation wrought through the tsunami in South Asia, typhoon Katrina within the Gulf states, the earthquake in Pakistan, the mudslides within the Philippines, the tornadoes within the American Midwest, one other earthquake in Indonesia-these are just the latest acts of God to reason humans of religion to question God's function within the actual universe. Volcanic eruptions, wildfires, epidemics, floods, blizzards, droughts, hailstorms, and famines can all elevate a similar questions: Can God intrude in usual occasions to avoid demise, harm, ailment, and agony? if that is so, why does God no longer act? If now not, is God really the All-Loving, omnipotent, and All-Present Being that many faiths proclaim? Grappling with such questions has continually been a vital part of faith, and diverse faiths have arrived at wildly assorted answers.

To discover quite a few spiritual motives of the tragedies inflicted by way of nature, writer Gary Stern has interviewed forty three famous non secular leaders around the non secular spectrum, between them Rabbi Harold Kushner, writer of whilst undesirable issues take place to stable humans ; Father Benedict Groeschel, writer of come up from Darkness ; The Rev. James Rowe Adams, founding father of the heart for innovative Christianity; Kenneth R. Samples, vp of cause to think; Dr. James Cone, the mythical African American theologian; Tony Campolo, founding father of the Evangelical organization for the merchandising of schooling; Dr. Sayyid Syeed, basic secretary of the Islamic Society of North the USA; Imam Yahya Hendi, the 1st Muslim chaplain at Georgetown college; Dr. Arvind Sharma, one of many world's prime Hindu students; Robert A. F. Thurman, the 1st American to be ordained a Tibetan Buddhist monk; David Silverman, the nationwide spokesman for American Atheists; and others—rabbis, clergymen, imams, clergymen, storefront ministers, itinerant holy humans, professors, and chaplains—Jews, Roman Catholics, mainline Protestants, evangelical Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and Atheists-people of trust, and other people of nonbelief, too.

Stern requested each one of them probing questions about what their faith teaches and what their religion professes in regards to the presence of tragedy. a few believe that the forces of nature are easily impersonal, and a few think that God is omniscient yet no longer all-powerful. a few declare that nature is finally damaging due to unique Sin, a few assert that the sufferers of common mess ups are sinners who need to die, and a few clarify that ordinary mess ups are the results of person and collective karma. nonetheless others profess that God motives agony so one can attempt and purify the sufferers. Stern, an award-winning faith journalist, has vast event during this form of analytical journalism. the result's a piece that probes and demanding situations genuine people's ideals a couple of topic that, regrettably, touches everyone's life.

Show description

Read Online or Download Can God Intervene?: How Religion Explains Natural Disasters PDF

Best comparative religion books

The Pagan Religions of the Ancient British Isles: Their Nature and Legacy

This is often the 1st survey of spiritual ideals within the British Isles from the Stone Age to the arriving of Christianity. Hutton attracts upon a wealth of recent information to bare a few very important rethinking approximately Christianization and the decline of paganism.

A Comparative Doxastic-Practice Epistemology of Religious Experience

​This e-book takes a theoretical company in Christian philosophy of faith and applies it to Buddhism, hence protecting Buddhism and featuring it favorably compared. Chapters discover how the claims of either Christianity and Theravada Buddhism leisure on people’s stories, so the query as to which claimants to non secular wisdom are correct rests at the evidential price of these studies.

Education, Poverty and Gender: Schooling Muslim Girls in India

This publication investigates the character of identification formation between economically backward adolescent Muslim women in northern India by way of concentrating on the interstitial areas of the ‘home’ and ‘school’. It examines problems with faith, patriarchy and schooling, to interrogate the connection among pedagogy and faith in South Asia.

History and Religion. Narrating a Religious Past

Background is without doubt one of the most vital cultural instruments to make feel of one’s state of affairs, to set up identification, outline otherness, and clarify swap. this can be the 1st systematic scholarly research that analyses the advanced courting among historical past and faith, making an allowance for non secular teams either as manufacturers of historic narratives in addition to specified themes of historiography.

Additional info for Can God Intervene?: How Religion Explains Natural Disasters

Example text

The world’s attention, of course, moved on to other things. There was the war in Iraq, terrorist attacks in Europe, another campaign to aid Africa. Hundreds of relief agencies set up shop in Indonesia and Sri Lanka. They started the laborious process of rebuilding communities that had hardly been part of the modern world before the tragedy. In the communities ravaged by the tsunami, the pain continued in numerous forms. In Sri Lanka, for instance, civil society was ill prepared to deal with the worst disaster in the country’s recorded history.

It’s true that Job was not the victim of a tsunami or an earthquake. But you can say that his individual suffering was a single, concentrated natural disaster, an Act of God for the ages. The questions asked of him in the book of Job and the rich, timeless answers he gives will always be reexamined in times of great suffering, as they were after the tsunami of 2004. In an age when the Internet and 24-hour television have opened a global window onto all sorts of day-to-day suffering, we can always turn to a weathered copy of the book of Genesis for some universal context.

2 million people. All of Indonesia had only 500 clinical psychologists, about 1 for every 420,000 people. Most Indonesian people did not know what a psychologist does and associated mental health issues with shame. The medical team set up counseling for those most in need. The people of Aceh Province were used to difficult lives. Some had been involved in a violent, 40-year conflict with 22 CAN GOD INTERVENE? the Indonesian government over independence. Countless civilians had been caught in the middle, suffering intimidation at the hands of the Indonesian military.

Download PDF sample

Rated 4.09 of 5 – based on 50 votes