Drawing from its home in the nations most ethnically diverse city, the institute will seek to provide a deeper understanding of the nature of religious tolerance and the pathways that lead to more interreligious understanding.
The gift will support a number of initial research initiatives at the institute:
Cutting-edge information technology will be used to assess and catalog hate speech and other indicators of religious intolerance through current analysis of websites and newswire databases.
It also will be used to study how search-engine algorithms and other Internet infrastructure may foster or deter both religious pluralism and intolerance.
Scholars will study policies and programs that affect religious tolerance by individuals and within societies and develop policy recommendations consistent with promotion of tolerance.
Researchers will focus on codes of conduct for interfaith dialogues and tolerance and study their effectiveness.
Researchers will try to understand the neurological, psychological and sociological causes of religious intolerance and violence.
In collaboration with the Rice University Kinder Institute for Urban Researchs Houston Area Survey, the Boniuk Institute will establish the most comprehensive survey yet to assess current and evolving attitudes toward religious coexistence within and among faith communities.
The institute will promote and amplify the importance of intrafaith dialogue in advancing religious tolerance, by convening symposia with representatives of Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
Schizophrenia occurs in about 1% of the adult population. In previous decades, the disorder was believed to be caused by incompetent parenting. Studies of identical twins overturned this belief. They showed that if one twin was schizophrenic, the chances of the other twin having the disorder is 65%. This shows that schizophrenia has a very strong genetic component. 1Decades ago, autism was also blamed on the parents. Identical twin studies turned up similar results: if one twin was autistic, there was a 68% chance that the other was also autistic. 1 Similarly the cause of homosexuality has been attributed to lack of bonding between a child and the same-sex parent. This belief has been abandoned by almost all mental health professionals. However, many religious conservatives still promote this principle. Studies of identical twins have shown that if one twin is gay, the other has about a 55% probability of also being gay. Again, there is a very strong genetic component at work.
The institute also will conduct educational programs and public outreach that engage world religious, political and academic leaders in efforts to foster the development of more tolerant religions, populations and society.
Additional outreach activities will include the development of collaborative networks of nongovernmental organizations that may use institute research to refine and focus their own tolerance-promoting activities.
On the student level, the institute will work with Rices Center for Civic Engagement and other student leadership and outreach initiatives to promote student-led research and outreach projects on religious tolerance and understanding.
We are strong believers in the power of education and outreach in advancing religious tolerance, said Milton Boniuk, a professor of ophthalmology and the Caroline F.
One problem with this and similar studies is that the researchers can ask what a person's orientation is, but not necessarily get a valid answer; a gay individual may be so firmly "" that they will not admit even to a stranger what their actual orientation is. Also, most studies classify subjects as either heterosexual or homosexual. A bisexual person might be involved with persons of the opposite gender and consider themselves to be heterosexual; their twin may also be bisexual but be involved with members of the same gender, and identify themselves as homosexual. Another problem is that identical twins share the same environment (their mother's womb) for the 9 months prior to birth. Thus, if there is a environmental factor which determines sexual orientation, it might work on the fetus before birth.
"The state of monarchy is the most supreme thing upon earth, for kings are not only God's lieutenants upon earth, and sit upon God's throne, but even by God himself are called gods...and so their power after a certain relation compared to divine power...for if you will consider the attributes to God, you shall se how they agree in the person of a king...to dispute what God does is blasphemy...so it is sedition in subjects to dispute what a king may do in the height of his power. I would not have you meddle with such ancient rights of mine as I have received from my predecessors...
The researchers found that the second result was observed. A gay male from the population that Hamer studied would notice that more of his mother's brothers will be gay than his father's brothers; so too with the various classes of maternal cousins when compared to his paternal cousins. Thus, much male homosexuality is caused by a gene on the X chromosome. Hamer went on to find the approximate location on the chromosome where the gay-causing gene was located. He found that many of his subjects had an identical sequence on the Xq28 region of their X chromosome. This shows the approximate location of the "gay gene." Researchers speculated that a group of interacting genes (including one in this region) might be found to determine sexual orientation in males. This prediction . The statistical "p" value is a measure of the significance of a test: the probability that it could have happened by chance. P values less than 0.01 (1%) are considered very significant. The Hamer study had a P factor of 0.00001, and so is considered extremely reliable.
Milton and Laurie Boniuk to establish an institute that promotes religious tolerance.
The Boniuk Institute for the Study and Advancement of Religious Tolerance will conduct research, public outreach and educational programming.
A series of essays by Mormon scholars into whether the Bookof Mormon is ancient religious scripture or a 19th centurywriting by Joseph Smith,
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