Turn the Other Cheek?: The Interreligious Roots and Promise of Nonviolence
In the United States, nonviolence seems to be losing its appeal. In the wake of Charlottesville, progressives and radicals are instead increasingly impressed by the antifa movement and wonder if nonviolence still works. Frustration with the the rise of alt-right fascist populism also has led to an impulse to counter violence with violence. In this critical moment, it is vitally important to return to the roots of nonviolence. I’ll argue that the sources of nonviolence theory and practice are robustly theological and interreligious. Remembering these beginnings, with special attention to Tolstoy, Gandhi, and King is a vital obligation particularly for the church at a time in which mass collective resistance may well prove necessary.