Elif Shafak on faith and spirituality

Thursday, March 30, 2017 - 16:02

We caught up with the author and political scientist to talk spirituality, ahead of her appearance in Prophets, Visionaries and Power.

Do you think a more spiritual world would be a better place?

Both the lack and the excess of spirituality can be problematic. Spirituality is too important a subject to be abandoned to the religious.

There are lots of acts of faith in our lives that have nothing to do with religion. As human beings we need a dose of faith. But we also need a dose of doubt. Without doubt, faith will soon become corrupt. Without doubt, faith will turn into dogma. What we need most therefore is the waltz of faith and doubt.

Which artists create work that you find spiritually inspiring?

Bach, whose music reflects both the thirst for faith and the desire to transcend faith. Goya has always been spiritually inspiring for me: a combination of darkness, resilience and unexpected light.

As part of our year-long Belief and Beyond Belief festival, Elif Shafak speaks about politics and religion on Saturday 8 April.

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