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Religion

Suffering morphs into cosiness in Easter celebrations

Anyone who wishes to be faithful to old Norwegian Easter traditions should eat salted herring and black pudding on Long Friday.

Failed campaigns against female genital mutilation

International organisations that campaign against female genital mutilation are being met with scepticism. Changes must come from within, says researcher.

Islam researcher wins the Holberg Prize

The British historian Michael Cook has been awarded the Holberg Prize 2014 for his contributions to the understanding of Islam’s early stages and expansion, as well as the religion’s ethical and political thinking.

Life after death online

Modern spiritualists have adopted the internet and are organising séances via Facebook. A couple of clicks is all it takes to contact a medium.

Gay Muslims keep religion and sexuality separate

Homosexual men in Beirut consider their sexual orientation to be a transitional phase rather than a lifelong part of their identity.

Extreme rituals enhance social cohesion

Physically and mentally exhausting rituals promote the spirit of community in society, according to a new study. This is the first time that this hypothesis has been confirmed experimentally.

Researchers cooperate with ‘medicine men’

Pregnant women in Mali are dependent on medicine men and women, also called traditional practitioners (TPs) of folk medicine. Researchers are now collaborating with these healers to help improve their practice.

Vikings held political summits across Europe

A new Viking exhibition reveals that the Vikings were not just marauding barbarians. They met with the European elite to exchange gifts, form alliances and to negotiate borders.

Music in harmony with faith

There is a clear connection between spiritual beliefs in a society and the music it creates, says Norwegian researcher.

Harry Potter is a goodie bag for the soul

The quest for spirituality is a feature of contemporary society. But we no longer believe in the one true religion. We make up our own metaphysical pick and mix. Harry Potter is just such a mix.