Upcoming Seminars

Becoming religious: How and why beliefs and practices are transmitted
Inform Online Seminar Thursday 14th January 2021
17.30-19.30 (GMT - London time)

You can register your attendance by making a voluntary donation to Inform. If you cannot make a donation at this time, but would still like to attend, please email [email protected] directly.

Please make sure that you share your contact details so that we can send you a link to the Zoom meeting.


This seminar will explore the motivations of minority religions and spiritual seekers to transmit and learn, and the processes they employ.

Professor Kim Knott, Professor Emerita of Lancaster University will be responding to the speakers. 

Short presentations on the following topics will be followed by a Question and Answer session: 

"Inventing Memory: the challenges of mass conversion in a liberal setting."
Professor 'Ben' Pink Dandelion, Professor of Quaker Studies, University of Birmingham

"Making Witches: Transmission of Wicca Before, During and After the Era of the Self-help Paperback" 
Dr Christina Oakley Harrington, Pagan Federation 

"Religious transmission among British Sikhs"
Dr Jasjit Singh, Associate Professor, School of Philosophy, Religion and History of Science, University of Leeds

"The Stickiness of Non-Religion? Intergenerational Transmission and the Formation of Non-Religious Identities in Childhood"
Dr Anna Strhan, Senior Lecturer, Department of Sociology, University of York 
Dr Rachael Shillitoe, Research Associate, Department of Theology and Religion, University of Birmingham

"The role of education in the development of British Hindu diasporas"
Rasamandala das, founder and national coordinator for ISKCON educational services and PhD candidate at the University of Cambridge

"Immigration, Socialisation and ‘Intra-Religious Conversion’ Among British Muslims"
Dr Riyaz Timol, Research Associate in British Muslim Studies, Cardiff University 

All people, young and old, are involved in the process of learning and passing on ideas, beliefs and practices that are important to them. This is how they express their identities and commitments, and how they sustain their worldviews, ideologies and ritual systems. Without effective processes for intergenerational and adult transmission, religious institutions, new or well-established, cannot survive and thrive. That ‘chain of memory’, as Danièle Hervieu-Léger noted, is the major feature distinguishing religion from other systems of meaning. And, although many in Western societies find themselves unschooled and adrift when it comes to religious affiliation and participation, they have increasing access, especially online, to an immense array of spiritual opportunities and resources. What paths they choose to follow, formal or informal, and how they go about acquiring the necessary beliefs, practices and training is varied.

A link to the Zoom meeting will be sent out to registered attendees in January 2021.