Is religion a force for good in the world?

Topic Selected: Religion

General Article icon Type: General Article

A new Ipsos poll commissioned for the 26 November Munk Debates on Religion in Toronto, Canada featuring Tony Blair and Christopher Hitchens has found that the world is evenly divided on one of history’s most vexing questions: is religion a force for good in the world?

When the debate-framing question was put to 18,192 citizens of 23 nations worldwide, half (48%) agreed that ‘religion provides the common values and ethical foundations that diverse societies need to thrive in the 21st century’, whereas the other half (52%) agreed that ‘deeply-held religious beliefs promote intolerance, exacerbate ethnic divisions, and impede social progress in developing and developed nations alike’.

On 26 November in Toronto, Canada, the Munk Debates is convening an international debate on the role of religion in the world. The debate will feature former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, a recent Catholic convert, debating author and atheist Christopher

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