Closing the Religion Deficit
In modern culture, religion is understood as something that belongs to the private realm, not the public realm. The consequence of this is that people involved in world affairs such as politicians and journalists are trained to deliberately ignore the role played by religion in shaping people’s values and attitudes. Religion, it is argued, plays a diminishing role in the world and is therefore best forgotten. World affairs are to be explained by economics, politics and culture, in that order. This results in a “religion deficit” or a lack of basic “religious literacy,” as the title of Stephen Prothero’s recent book put it.