About the discipline
The study of military campaigns throughout history often can be linked to factors involving religion. Some conflicts are directly related to religious belief; other conflicts are influenced by religion in how alliances are made and countries are mobilized for periods of war over the notion of belief. Many conflicts have roots in religious and cultural disagreement, sometimes going back centuries.
In today’s society, the war on terror has been compared to a war against Muslim extremist philosophies. It is almost impossible to understand the situations in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as the events of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, when religion is removed from the conversation. Understanding the nature of conflict from a religious perspective gives vital help in both defense and working to avoid violent conflict by anticipating areas of conflict before they occur.
Strategic communication: The U.S. and its war on terrorism have been portrayed by some as a war on Muslims by a Christian nation. In some cases the U.S. military has been successful in changing minds on that theme, but the belief persists in other parts of the world. The Center’s unique position within the School of Journalism can link those interested in military research with those in the field of strategic communication in an effort to study ways in which the military can change its message or frame it into one that has a broad effectiveness. In particular, conflict theory might be useful because it has been studied as a public relations tool for helping organizations get their message out more effectively and navigate the pitfalls that come with an uneven public response to their message.
Military life: Current events have focused on the religious practice of military officers while in uniform. Others have examined how a soldier can practice a faith in a time of war and what they can do when they are facing direct orders that violate their own religious beliefs. For some there might not be much conflict between military and religious practice, but it is useful to attempt to identify and understand those instances when a military member might field conflict between those two worlds. Work done through the Center on Religion & the Professions in ethics and religion might foster research that examines how a person could attempt to solve these issues, and ways in which the military can help anticipate those conflicts more readily and deal with them effectively.
Workplace diversity: As the military becomes more diverse in terms of gender, ethnic and religious makeup, these issues will come to the forefront more often than they have in the past. The Center focuses on workplace diversity in terms of religious practice, attempting to help workers understand how to work through differences in the workplace that are affected by religion, even if on the surface the issue does not appear to be a religious one. It also could help in terms of teaching about religious tolerance, whether that could come in terms of harassment of those who practice other religions within the military; those one encounters while serving in another country; serving as or working with chaplains from a different faith tradition; or the fact that some in the military might choose a non-Christian or non-religious symbol on items such as headstones in national cemeteries.
- “America’s Miracle Man in Vietnam: Ngo Dinh Diem, Religion, Race, and U.S. Intervention in Southeast Asia” by Matthew Masur. Journal of Military History. 70, no. 4 (2006): 1183-4.
- “Being Hopeful And Continuing To Move Ahead: Religious Coping In Iranian Chemical Warfare Poisoned Veterans, A Qualitative Study.” by Fazlolah Ahmadi et al. Journal Of Religion & Health 49.3 (2010): 311-321. Academic Search Complete. Web. 19 Jan. 2012.
- “Christianity and the Profession of Arms” by Craig Bickell. Evangelical Review of Theology. 41 no. 3 (2017): 222-233.
- “Ethical Integration of Christian Faith Into Clinical Work With Service Members and Veterans” by Laurel Shaler. Social Work & Christianity. 43 no. 3 (2016): 47-58.
- “Existential spiritual life among Swedish service members in transition: Marking out trends” by Jan Grimmel. Spirituality in Clinical Practice. 3 no. 3 (2016): 208-219.
- “Family circles: Assessing family and spiritual connections with military clients” by Dexter R. Freeman. Social Work & Christianity. 43 no. 3 (2016): 28-46.
- “Hypotheses on Religion in the Military” by Ron E. Hassner. International Studies Review. 18 no. 2 (2016): 312-332.
- “Integrating Cognitive Processing Therapy and Spirituality for the Treatment of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Military” by Natalia R. Wade. Social Work & Christianity. 43 no. 3 (2016): 59-72.
- “Introduction: Special Issue on Religious and Spiritually-Oriented Interventions with Veteran and Military Populations” by Dexter Freeman and Laurel Shaler. Social Work & Christianity. 43 no. 3 (2016): 3-6.
- “Navigating the Minefield: A Model for Integrating Religion and Spirituality in Social Work Practice with Service Members and Veterans” by Patrick S. Foley, David L. Albright and Kari L. Fletcher. Social Work & Christianity. 43 no. 3 (2016): 73-96.
- “Religion, spirituality, and mental health of U.S. military veterans: Results from the National Health and Resilience in Veterans Study” by Vanshdeep Sharma et al. Journal of Affective Disorders. 217 (2017):197-204.
- “Religion in the military: navigating the channel between the religion clauses” by David E. Fitzkee and Linell A. Letendre. Air Force Law Review, Spring, 2007.
- “Religious Beliefs And Actors In The Legitimation Of Military Dictatorships In The Southern Cone, 1964–1989.” by Maria Soledad Catoggio. Latin American Perspectives 38.6 (2011): 25-37. Historical Abstracts. Web. 19 Jan. 2012.
- “ROTC and the Catholic Campus” by Ward Thomas. Armed Forces and Society. 33, no. 2 (2007): 224-37.
- “Spiritual functioning among veterans seeking residential treatment for PTSD: A matched control group study” by Joseph M. Currier, Kent D. Drescher and Irene J. Harris. Spirituality in Clinical Practice. 1 no. 1 (2014): 3-15.
- “Taking Religion Seriously in the U.S. Military: The Chaplaincy as a National Strategic Asset” by Ed Waggoner. Journal of the American Academy of Religion. 82 no. 3 (2014): 702-735.
- “Tensions Between Military Service and Jewish Orthodoxy In Israel: Implications Imagined and Real” by Stuart A. Cohen. Israel Studies. 12.1 (2007) 103-126.
- “The Influence of Spirituality and Religion on Coping for Combat-Deployed Military Personnel” by William R. Sterner and Lisa R. Jackson-Cherry. Counseling & Values. 60 no. 1 (2015): 48-66.
- “Traditional Religion and Guerilla Warfare in Modern Africa” by Christopher Gray. Journal of Third World Studies, Spring 1999.
- “Understanding resiliency through vulnerability: Cultural meaning and religious practice among Muslim military personnel” by Wahiba Abdu-Ras Shareda Hosein. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality. 7 no. 3 (2015): 179-191.
- “Warrior Faith: A Marine’s Lesson in Religion, Health, and Healing” by Kate Hendricks Thomas. Social Work & Christianity. 43 no. 3 (2016): 109-123.
- Religion and the American Civil War. Randall M. Miller, Harry S. Stout and Charles Reagan Wilson (eds.). Oxford University Press US, 1998.
- Bridge or barrier religion, violence, and visions for peace. Gerrie ter Haar and James J. Busuttil. BRILL, 2005.
- The Oxford Companion to American Military History, section “Religion in the Military” by John Whiteclay Chambers II. Oxford University Press. 2000.
- Rights vs. public safety after 9/11: America in the age of terrorism. Amitai Etzioni and Jason H. Marsh (eds.). Rowman & Littlefield, 2003.
- Sword or the Scroll?: Dilemmas of Religion and Military Service in Israel. Stuart A. Cohen. Routledge, 1997.
- Militia Christi: The Christian Religion & the Military in the First Three Centuries. Adolf Von Harnack Polebridge, Pr Westar Inst, 1981.
- Mughal Empire in India: Their Political, Legal, Social, Cultural, Religions and Military Systems. H.S. Bhatia Deep & Deep Publications, 2001.
- Heaven in the Midst of Hell: A Quaker Chaplain’s View of the war in Iraq by Sheri Snively and James N. Mattis. Greenleaf Book Group, 2010.
- Religion and the Cold War. Dianne Kirby (ed.). Palgrave Macmillan, 2002.
- Desecrating Scriptures: A Case Study for the LUCE Project in Media, Religion, and International Relations
- Strauss, Angela. “Pluralism in Heaven: Religion in Prussian Military of the 18th Century.” Hitotsubashi Journal of Law and Politics. Vol. 39 (Feb. 2011): 55-69.
Codes of ethics
- Department of the Navy – Code of Ethics
- U.S. Army Values
- Marine Code of Conduct
- U.S. Air Force Core Values
- U.S. Coast Guard Core Values
- National Conference on Ministry to the Armed Forces – The Covenant and the Code of Ethics for Chaplains of the Armed Forces
- Religion and the military: Source of comfort, point of controversy (ReligionLink)
- Religion and Peace-Building (ReligionLink)
- Framework for Inter-cultural Competence (U.S. Army Research Institute)(.pdf)
- Organized Religion’s Role in the Military (Pew Research Center)
- Military, Race and Religion poll (Military Times)
- Military Religious Freedom Foundation
- Fault Lines: Religion in the Military (Al-Jazeera, English)
- Pastoring: Religion Must Rethink Military Metaphors (Center for Media Literacy)
- Freedom of Religion and Religious Symbols in the Public Sphere
- “ACLU Defends Orthodox Volunteer Firemen” (Baltimore Jewish Times)
- “Confronting Nuclear War: The role of Education, Religion, and the Community,” online book by MU adjunct peace studies professor Bill Wickersham
- Robinson, Paul. “Ethics Training and Development in the Military” (.pdf)
Professional associations and faith groups
- North American Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies
- Association of Professional Chaplains
- Christian Nuclear Fellowship
- Conference on Faith & History
- International Association of Christian Chaplains
- National Association of Catholic Chaplains
- National Association of Jewish Chaplains
- North American Christian Foreign Language Association
- Brewer, Edward C. and Kay Taylor. “Managing Collaboration in the Thirty Years War: Culture, Politics and the Influence of Donald Wildmon.” Journal of Religion and Popular Culture> Vol. 23, No. 1 (April 2011): 1-13.
- Levy, Yagil. “The Clash between Feminism and Religion in the Israeli Military: A Multilayered Analysis.” Social Politics. Vol. 17, No. 2 (March 2010): 185-209.
- McLaughlin, Sandra S. MD; Andrew D. McLaughlin, MD and John A. Van Slyke, DO. “Faith and Religious Beliefs in an Outpatient Military Population.” Southern Medical Journal. Vol. 103, No. 6 (June 2010): 527-31.