The Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday morning opened the International Buddhist Conference to commemorate together with India, the 2.600th "Sambuddhtva Jayanthi", the anniversary of Buddha's enlightenment.

Religious ideas and the people who represent them are indispensable tools in the pursuit of peace, justice and the common good, said the U.S. ambassador to the Holy See, Miguel Diaz, in an address at The Catholic University of America.

As recent events have unfolded throughout the Middle East, it is increasingly clear that an in-depth understanding of the role of religious freedom—and the cultural and political role of religion itself—is crucial to advancing American foreign policy interests especially in that region.

The Vatican will unveil the latest installment in its social media transformation next week — a Facebook page dedicated to the upcoming beatification of Pope John Paul II, officials said.

Islam dominated religion news coverage in 2010, a year that also saw religion reporting double to 2 percent of all news, according to a new study from the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism and the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life.

A government project dubbed the “Faces of Israel” aims to introduce North American students to their Israeli counterparts. A delegation of young Israelis representing various sectors of society will travel to college campuses to answer questions about their country. Politicians and activists on the political Right were surprised to discover that while the delegation is ethnically diverse, it has no hareidi-religious or other religious Jewish representatives...

The end of the Mubarak regime demonstrates the falsity of commonly held stereotypes: Arabs reject democracy, Islam is incompatible with popular sovereignty, the grip of rulers of security states is unshakable.

Over the last century or so, Israelis have worked to make Israel a part of the Middle East. Israeli sabras (native born Israelis) with their argumentative attitudes; take no prisoners mentality; love for hummus, falafel and “Israeli” salad; tan skin; the yalla (let’s go) and no-translation needed ‘tseh (tongue hiss) live up to the Middle Eastern stereotypes and fit in with regional commonalities. If a tourist was dropped off in a nightclub or beach in Beirut or Tel Aviv, the only notable difference between the patrons would be the spoken language.