• religion

Religion Speakers

 

Has religion—a guiding force for billions of people—become simply the root cause of wars, political strife, and ideological dust-ups? The speakers here offer a luminous understanding of religion’s pivotal role in modern life.

 
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Megan Phelps-Roper

Former Member of the Westboro Baptist Church | Author of Unfollow: A Journey from Hatred to Hope (Forthcoming)

Megan Phelps-Roper grew up in the Westboro Baptist Church: a group infamous for its intolerance. But dialogue on Twitter showed her another life was possible—and in 2012, she escaped her home, family, and faith. She is a unique example of how empathy can overcome hate, and how tolerance can bridge ideology. 
Reza Aslan

#1 New York Times Bestselling Author of Zealot and God: A Human History | Host of CNN's Believer

Reza Aslan is an internationally-renowned writer, commentator, professor, and religious scholar, whose NYT’s bestselling books and packed lectures have propelled him to the frontlines in the fight aga...

Karen Armstrong

Founder of The Charter for Compassion

Karen Armstrong is the most original and inclusive speaker on the role of religion in the modern world. Her bestselling books, including A History of God, and sought-after talks examine the difference...

Wajahat Ali

Attorney, Playwright, and New York Times Op-Ed Contributor

Wajahat Ali—a New York Times contributing op-ed writer who regularly appears on CNN to discuss politics—is a new kind of public intellectual: young, exuberant, and optimistic. He speaks on the multifa...

Negin Farsad

Social Justice Comedian, Director of The Muslims Are Coming!

Negin Farsad is at the forefront of social justice comedy—a field that she insists totally exists (or should). A TED Senior Fellow, author of How to Make White People Laugh, and as one of few Iranian-...

Matthew Vines

Author of God and the Gay Christian

Matthew Vines is a gay Christian—and that’s no contradiction. He has also become a leading new voice on the Bible and homosexuality. His groundbreaking speech countering anti-gay interpretations of Sc...

Bassam Tariq

TED Fellow and Award-winning Director of The Ghosts of Sugar Land

Bassam Tariq is a TED Fellow and director of the acclaimed film These Birds Walk. Through his work—as a filmmaker, blogger, and halal butcher shop owner—he shares intimate stories of Muslims from arou...