Eleven years after 9/11, many Americans continue to look at people of the Middle East and their religion with a hint of apprehension. However, we share more than you think. For instance, Christians may be interested to know that in Iraq there is an area of lush vegetation called the Fertile Crescent and studies suggest the Garden of Eden was most likely located in that gorgeous part of the country. Many religions developed within that same vicinity.
ABC's two-part, four-hour special Back to the Beginning won't convert anyone from one religion (or no religion) to another. It's no more a tool for encouragement than shows like No Reservations or Bizarre Foods. Most viewers won't walk away wanting to eat bugs, nasty bits or communion wafers. It's just entertainment, a chance to explore. Back to the Beginning gives us the opportunity to examine the similarities between three of the world's largest religions: Christianity, Islam and Judaism. We'll also see and experience places we may not ever get a chance to visit.
The show's host (or tour guide, if you will) is Christiane Amanpour, Chief International Correspondent for CNN and the Global Affairs anchor for ABC. No doubt some of the areas will be quite familiar to Amanpour, who was raised in Tehran by an Iranian father and British mother. Amanpour earned a job with CNN directly after graduating college in 1983 and has continued to work for them throughout her life. She has reported from most modern war zones and traveled extensively. Her coverage of global events helped CNN earn its leading rank among other news organizations.
Amanpour will be a knowledgeable and enjoyable guide for Back to the Beginning, which airs Fridays, Dec. 21 and 28 at 9/8c.
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