All posts filed under: 42 News

Wo hört Spiritualität auf und wo fängt Selbstoptimierung an?

Eine spirituelle Lebensführung wird auch in Deutschland immer populärer. Franz Winter ist Professor für Religionswissenschaft an der Universität Graz in Österreich und forscht unter anderem zu neureligiösen Bewegungen in Ost und West, Religion und Medien sowie der Geschichte des Kontakts zwischen Europa und Asien. Mit fortytwomagazine hat er über Spiritualität und Religion gesprochen, wie der Trend von anderen Bewegungen beeinflusst wird und wo manch spirituelles Angebot an seine Grenzen stößt. Yoga, Meditation, Journaling, Mantras – all dies ist mittlerweile zum Inbegriff der modernen Spiritualität in Deutschland geworden. Gemäß dem Vorsatz „Du kannst alles schaffen, wenn du nur genug an dich glaubst“ geht es darum, zu sich selbst zurückzufinden. Das eigene Innere dient als Quelle der Kraft, um zu handeln und zu transformieren. Besonders Yoga steht voll im Trend: Laut einer Studie des Berufsverbands der Yogalehrenden von 2018 praktizieren rund 5 % der Deutschen Yoga. Der Anteil der Frauen ist mit 9 % deutlich höher als unter den Männern mit 1 %. Moderne Spiritualität hat also schon seit langem Einzug in Deutschland gehalten. Doch was versteht …

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“Probably the most frightening thing anyone had said since the rise of Christianity”

Do you believe in God or science? We often conceive of religion and science as antagonistic. But reason has played a big role in the three major monotheistic religions. In an interview with fortytwomagazine, Peter Adamson, Professor of late ancient and Arabic philosophy at Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, takes us back to a time when science entailed more than an inquiry into the physical world. He explains how we arrived at our modern-day assumption that religion and science are diametrically opposed to each other and suggests a third alternative to answer some of our biggest questions about existence. fortytwomagazine: Your primary fields of interest are late ancient and medieval philosophy. Bring us back! Which understanding of science did people have in those times?  Prof. Peter Adamson: For most of them, science would be defined in the terms of Aristotle’s philosophy. There, you have science when you demonstrate the truth. And then, there are various constraints on what a demonstration would involve. Obviously, the demonstration needs to start with true premises and lead to true conclusions. To avoid …

Inclusive language changes how we see the world and how children perceive their future

Language has the power to influence our perception of the world. Psycholinguist Dr. Sayaka Sato from the University of Fribourg explains how grammatical gender (“le, la” or “der, die, das”) influences our worldview and how we can use inclusive language to make people believe in themselves when choosing a profession.   fortytwomagazine: Dr. Sato, how does grammatical gender, such as “le”, “la” in French, affect our worldview?   Dr. Sayaka Sato: In our research we see that linguistical or grammatical markers influence how we unconsciously perceive visual information. We studied both English native speakers who don’t speak any other languages and French-English bilingual speakers in an English context. They were presented with pictures of objects that are stereotypically related to either women or men. For example a necktie or a necklace. They looked at one of the pictures, and afterwards they were shown an androgynous face alongside a female and male trait word (e.g., “charming” vs. “realistic”). The participants then had to decide which word best described the face. In theory, they don’t have to …

The image shows crumpled aluminum foil.

“Conspiracy theories are the weapon of the powerful”

Diving deep into conspiracy theories this month, we were left wondering if certain narratives get recycled throughout history. Are we more susceptible nowadays, or is Social Media the reason for spreading new and old conspiracy theories? We sat down with Assistant Professor Elise Wang, who brought together her vast knowledge of medieval literature and her interest in conspiracy theories to answer the question of why some conspiracies just won’t die. For our interview, she walked us through why specific conspiracy theories that are popular today should be considered with the past in mind. Additionally, we gained some insights into why people choose to believe in conspiracies in the first place.