Leymah Gbowee won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for her efforts that led to ending the Liberian civil war. On Oct. 6, she will come to Harvard Divinity School to discuss her experiences and insights into peacebuilding as part of the Religions and the Practice of Peace monthly public dinner Colloquium Series.
Gbowee’s talk, “Women as Catalysts for Local and Global Spiritually-Engaged Movements for Sustainable Peace,” will take place at 6 p.m. at HDS. RSVP is required.
HDS: What do you see as the biggest threat to peacebuilding?
LG: The misinterpretation of faith and different religions and religious practices and how people are using it as a means of mobilizing the rest of the world to hate. People take one event, one terror attack, and instead of seeing it as evil, because that’s what it is, they try to pin that evil to a religious group.
What it is doing to the world, because we are all in line to some kind of faith practice, is divide us more and more, and a divided world can never achieve peace. It is only in interconnectedness, or coming together as united bodies, that we can find peace.
Unfortunately, if you use politics, you won’t get everyone, because it’s not everyone who is a practicing politician, or something like that. If you use education, you won’t get everyone. If you use ethnicity, you will get the world mobilized in anger, but faith and religion is something that everyone has some feeling toward.