Monday, October 13, 2008

Religious Diversity in Singapore

Lai Ah Eng (ed),2008, Religious Diversity in Singapore, Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asia Studies
This book collects together 34 contributors to 28 chapters highlighting the incredible religious collage that Singaporeans experience. It also highlights what is needed for a multi-cultural, multi-religious society to survive - tolerance and dialogue. While each contributor writes from his or her own religious tradition, there is a sense that these authors are careful in what they write in order not to offend practitioners of other tradition.
Being a sociological thesis, its emphasis is more on a nation living in harmony than in religious spiritualities. I like the title of one of the chapters, "Keeping God in Place: The Management of Religion in Singapore" which speaks volumes for the context of the rest of the book.
On the whole, its almost 600 pages is worth reading for the religious diversities and hopes of the various traditions.

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