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Reviewed by Roy T. James for Readers' Favorite
Not In God's Name: Making Sense of Religious Conflict by Paula Fouce begins with a vivid description of the pandemonium, the aftermath of the killing of Mrs Indira Gandhi, prime minister of India, in 1984. Paula Fouce happened to witness many horrific incidents, of Sikhs being attacked and murdered, looting and arson on a big scale, the president’s (who happened to be a Sikh) car being attacked, and many other scenes of great repugnance. This made her embark upon a long journey through the spiritual essence of India, recollecting the many impressions left by previous visits, as well as letting fresh impressions evolve by making new visits. There is hardly a part of India that she hasn’t visited to experience for herself, especially the spiritual makeup. From the abodes of the yogis, swamis and others in Himalayas, the Jewish synagogues, Buddhism, Jainism and other practices, the influence from other cultures like the Chinese, and the modern challenges from the jihadists, no aspect of violence or the efforts to quell violence in our society is left untouched in her attempt to find an answer.
Not In God's Name: Making Sense of Religious Conflict by Paula Fouce exhorts India to take a prime role in saving human society. Reminding us of the importance Asoka as well as Akbar felt towards religious tolerance and the path shown by Mahatma Gandhi, she ends with a quote from the ancient scriptures of India: “The different religions are like lotus flowers. They rise from the murky depths, and when they finally reach the sunlight they bloom. When a lotus opens, it represents spiritual awakening. No two buds are alike, and no one blossom is more beautiful than another. They all celebrate the divine.”