The Moral Lives of Primates, Questioning the Priesthood, and More

The Moral Lives of Primates, Questioning the Priesthood, and More

Our moral code is much older than our religious beliefs. In fact, we can trace traits like empathy, justice and cooperation all the way back to our animal ancestors.

Credit: Catherine Marin

Finding Our Moral Heritage Among the Primates

From chimpanzees to bonobos, primates can be amazingly altruistic–consoling distressed group members, even prying rocks from fighting male’s hands. Biologist Frans de Waal explains why we humans can find clues to our own moral code in the ethical behavior of animals.

Frans de Waal, author of The Bonobo and the Atheist: In Search of Humanism Among the Primates

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Has the Priesthood Failed?

The Christian priesthood was first described in an anonymous letter in the New Testament, known as the Epistle to the Hebrews. It managed to become an institution, and Garry Wills argues it has now created a top-heavy, unequal church. He says it’s as if “God set up a conduit, and it can only be run through priests.” In his new book, Wills explores where the priesthood came from, and why we don’t need it anymore.

Garry Wills, author of Why Priests: A Failed Tradition
Credit: Wikimedia Commons | Ashashyou

In Egypt, More Violence Against Coptic Christians

On April 7th, Coptic Christian mourners were attacked outside their central Cathedral in Cairo, a holy site on par with the Vatican. They had gathered for a funeral for fellow Copts, who were killed during sectarian fighting a few days earlier. Though it’s unclear who started the violence, it’s a sign of the deep-rooted tension between Egypt’s Christian minority and Muslim majority.

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