Letter: Exploring an issue of concern to millions

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Sir: Why should Larry Adler sneer at the fact that studying the intellectually stimulating and spiritually challenging academic discipline of theology has improved my life?

Why should he so furiously insist on disbelieving me when I bear witness to the truth that theology 'works'? Why should he cite all the bad, perverted forms of religion in the world to damn my lectureship, which will involve not only the best theology but the best science, too? (Would he ban the study of the harmonica just because a lot of people use this instrument to make an appalling noise?)

Why does it never occur to him that if you nurture people's souls in addition to their brains, these people will give to the starving millions in Somalia - and to the destitute in British inner cities - and indeed to every other place where there is a need to 'love thy neighbour as thyself'?

I can only conclude that Mr Adler is utterly ignorant of the revolution this century in both science and theology, utterly ignorant of the new epistemological thinking that has produced the drive towards interdisciplinary studies, and utterly ignorant of the fact that, by clinging to his old-fashioned beliefs, he is reacting as fearfully as any bigot who perverts religion.

Yours sincerely,

SUSAN HOWATCH

London, SW1

26 March

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