NEW HAVEN: Senior Christian and Muslim scholars and leaders are meeting in the United States this week to seek common ground in their different faiths and foster better understanding between Islam and the West.
Ain’t gonna happen — not until they first openly and honestly discuss the uncommon ground they do not share — you know, those pesky “peripheral” issues like jihad, dhimmitude, and jizya, denial of Christ’s divinity (or that he was even crucified), the fact that the Koran and Bible disagree about so many things (was it the son of the slave or the wife who was to be sacrificed — and where?). Until Muslims and Christians can first openly (and maturely) discuss these issues, the rest is meaningless fluff.
Hosted by the Yale University Divinity School, the conference is the first public dialogue launched by Muslim intellectuals in the Common Word group that had appealed to Christian leaders last year for discussions among theologians to promote peace.
Most of the US participants are Protestant theologians and church leaders, including some prominent evangelicals, but some Catholics and Jews are also taking part. The Muslims, both Sunnis and Shia, hail from all across the world.
The Yale conference began on Friday with closed-door talks among 60 theologians about how the two faiths understand the concept of loving God and loving one’s fellow man. It will expand to include 150 people in public sessions from Tuesday to Thursday.
Evangelicals: An important aspect of the meeting is that evangelical Christians are among the participants. While some US evangelical preachers denounce Islam as a false and violent religion, several evangelical leaders support this dialogue.
As “intolerant” as these evangelicals appear, it must be admitted that their position is the most logical: if you believe in Religion 1, which preaches tenets x, y, and z, and Religion 2 denies them, insisting instead on a, b, c, the only logical thing is to conclude that Religion 2 is “false.” (As for “violent,” watching the evening news is enough to reach that conviction.)
The conference comes just more than a week after King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia hosted an unprecedented meeting of Muslims, Christians, Jews, Hindus and Buddhists in Madrid and pledged to pursue interfaith dialogue.
Yes, and to further demonstrate their “sincerity,” the Saudi government continues indoctrinating its youth with hate-filled teachings directed against none other than “Christians, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists.”
The Common Word project, started by Muslim clerics, says Christianity and Islam share two common core values — love of God and love of neighbour.
That’s right. And this “love of neighbour” has prompted Muslims, in a display of selflessness, to invade, plunder, and subjugate their neighbors’ lands, all in the name of Islam — and “love,” of course.