Inquisitive Minds Podcast Critical Thinking on History, Religion, Politics and Culture

On this week's episode of the Inquisitive Minds Podcast, we discuss the recent Canadian Supreme Court decision which ruled against opening city council meetings with a prayer. In this particular case, the ruling was brought against the wishes of the mayor of the city of Saguenay, in the province of Quebec. Does such a decision go against the freedom of conscience and religion? What role should religion, and more specifically prayer, play in the political realm? Does Canada truly uphold the principles of secularism? What are the differences between Quebec and the rest of Canada when it comes to secularism and the place of religion in the public sphere?

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Many people say they have received an answer to prayer at some point in their life. Some are convinced that God hears prayer. Christians even believe it can serve as a way to influence God. Through prayer, one can obtain financial success, experience salvation, heal the sick, and defeat the forces of evil. But how can we explain that people from different faith traditions – beliefs that are most often contrary from one another – all claim answers to their prayers? How can God answer different (and opposite) requests at the same time? Do Allah and Yahweh both answer prayers? What about unanswered prayer? Believers certainly pray that God would make the world a better place, but suffering and evil are far from being eradicated. Is there really a divine being listening to people’s requests?

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