Thursday 19 January 2017

Fanatical adherence to any set of beliefs generates evil

Published 29/06/2015 | 02:30

Tourists mourn at the site of the terrorist attack in Sousse, Tunisia, in which 38 people, including three Irish holidaymakers, were killed
Tourists mourn at the site of the terrorist attack in Sousse, Tunisia, in which 38 people, including three Irish holidaymakers, were killed

The latest terror attacks in France and Tunisia bring home to us, yet again, the evil that is generated by fanatical adherence to any set of beliefs.

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These deeds are perpetrated by those who operate at the edge of society, seeing themselves as fulfilling the will of some ruthless and demanding God, which will lead to the ultimate reward of martyrdom.

Thankfully, Ireland is experiencing a post-religious phase where traditional religion is being steadily replaced by a more reflective and interpersonal form of engagement with one another and with the world. In essence it heralds a return to Christianity as a commitment to love, forgiveness and care, particularly for those who have been marginalised.

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