Religion/Secularism

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

Book launch: Presentation followed by discussion. The book being presented is Occult Features of Anarchism - With Attention to the Conspiracy of Kings and the Conspiracy of the Peoples: In the nineteenth century anarchists were accused of conspiracy by governments afraid of revolution, but in the current century various “conspiracy theories” suggest that anarchists are controlled by government itself. The Illuminati were a network of intellectuals who argued for self-government and against private property, yet the public is now often told that they were (and are) the very group that controls governments and defends private property around the world. Intervening in such misinformation, Lagalisse works with primary and secondary sources in multiple languages to set straight the history of the Left and illustrate the actual relationship between revolutionism, pantheistic occult philosophy, and the clandestine fraternity. Exploring hidden correspondences between anarchism, Renaissance magic, and New Age movements, Lagalisse also advances critical scholarship regarding leftist attachments to secular politics. Inspired by anthropological fieldwork within today’s anarchist movements, her essay challenges anarchist atheism insofar as it poses practical challenges for coalition politics in today’s world. Studying anarchism as a historical object, Occult Features of Anarchism also shows how the development of leftist theory and practice within clandestine masculine public spheres continues to inform contemporary anarchist understandings of the “political,” in which men’s oppression by the state becomes the prototype for power in general. Readers behold how gender and religion become privatized in radical counterculture, a historical process intimately linked to the privatization of gender and religion by the modern nation-state.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

This roundtable explores the relationships between religion and socialisms in the past two hundred years, around the world, from the perspectives of history, theology and activist practice. In the 19th century Socialists and marxists across the United States and Europe were utopian Christians, Jews and pagans, who saw their socialism and religious beliefs as united. Later, in the twentieth century, socialism continued to inform the radical politics of Muslims, Buddhists and other traditions across Asia, Latin America and Africa. Across the world, socialism and religions have transformed one another. Most scholarly attention has been lavished upon secular socialist traditions. Yet, the historically significantly more popular and influential religiously inclined socialisms have not received a proportionate level of interest. Our panel remedies this gap, by exploring the multiplicities of religions and socialisms, asking: are religious socialisms really socialism? Are they really religion? Our panel suggests that while important, secular socialism has been the exception, not the rule. Historically, religious socialisms were the norm. Our panel recovers religious socialism as a living tradition that can and should inform our politics and ways of life.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

What is the relationship between spirituality and activism? What is the role of faith in politics? From abolition and the civil rights movement to anti-war activism and the Poor People’s Campaign, people of faith and their institutions have been at the forefront of social change. Concern for the earth and the welfare of humanity is at the heart of an aware and mature spirituality. Even Christians are discovering God’s cry for justice in the Bible. This panel will discuss the legal, ideological, ethical, and practical implications of spiritual and religious activism.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

After the recent Gaza disaster, international unity for non-violent actions that transcend, race, ethic and national origins becomes even more urgent and . . . necessary.
Those events reflect a manifestation of the grim racist, ethnic cleansing ideologies advocated by a recent surge of demagogues that have gripped the world including the Holy Land, the epicentre of world conflict and potential world peace.

As such, it is essential to build coalitions with activists worldwide, linked to Holy Land activists to fight this trend, to enlighten the world by bringing it to a place of equality and justice and at the same time pushing the reactionary demagogues back into obsolescence.