Leonardo"s Notebook by Mattheus Mei

I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

West risks obsession with Islam

The Times UK has an interesting article about a statement issued by the Vatican about the West's obsession with Islam, and about the need for a level playing field indeed in regards to all the world's religions when it comes to dialog and interaction.
...asked if there was a sense that Islam must not "monopolise" inter-faith dialogue Cardinal Tauran replied: "Yes, people are obsessed by Islam. For example I'm going to India next month and I want to give this message that all religions are equal. Sometimes there are priorities because of particular situations, but we mustn't get the impression there are first-class religions and second-class religions".
Cardinal Tauran said as much perhaps to down play the western notion that there's an impending clash of civilizations or to highlight the fact that Christianity is a persecuted religion the world round - not just in the Muslim Umma, signaling it to be a tragic mistake to proceed forward without that understanding.
This does not take away from the fact that the Pope is convening an international conference on Islam and Christianity this fall as a way to openly move forward on the "open letter," nor does it lessen the value and importance of demanding equanimity from the Muslim nations.

The cardinal criticised Saudi Arabia for not allowing Christian worship. “What is good for me is good for the other, so if it's possible for Muslims to have a mosque in the West, we should have the same in Muslim countries. This is not the case in many countries."

He said that last week he had celebrated mass at a new church in Doha, Qatar, consecrated a month ago. "It is a very impressive building. Now we're going to have a school there run by nuns. So this is an example of very good inter-religious dialogue with very concrete effects. In Saudi Arabia that is not the case yet."

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