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Can Muslim-Christian Dialogue Succeed?

Printed From: WhyIslam.org
Category: General
Forum Name: InterReligious Dialogue
Forum Discription: Forum for people of various faiths to discuss and inquire about different religions
URL: http://www.whyislam.org/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=23253
Printed Date: 20 April 2019 at 1:15am
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Topic: Can Muslim-Christian Dialogue Succeed?
Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Subject: Can Muslim-Christian Dialogue Succeed?
Date Posted: 12 July 2008 at 12:49am

Muslim-Christian dialogue can succeed only by recognizing realities: Dr. Tariq Ramadan

Eminent theologian and writer Tariq Ramadan delivered a lecture on ‘Christianity and Islam : Values and History’ on 3rd July at Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI). The programme was organized under JMI’s Outreach programme.

Prof Ramadan’s talk focused on the similarities and differences between the two great religions of the world and the need to rise above differences and look at ways to live with harmony and trust. He stressed the need for honest self-appraisal, critical thinking and a commitment to the principles of one’s own religion while also showing respect for other traditions, beliefs and practices. ...

Addressing the audience, Ramadan said he had been among Christians for a number of years in order to comprehend this topical theme and traversed the space from experience to the text (Qur’an) and, then, it dawned upon him what he was going to convey...

Ramadan said dialogue requires understanding other peoples’ psyche because we cannot understand other people without understanding it...

He said three things are essential for a dialogue : intellectual empathy, deep faith and rationality and spirituality. He said it may be incorrect to ask any person to observe veil, it is equally wrong for a state to force anyone to not observe veil. He said the first thing required for coming out of the present situation is humility, education, self-knowledge and patient ears for others. Second point is dialogue that requires removing non-confidence from the mind of the other partner of dialogue. Third point is recognizing that all points are important and the fourth one is attachment of scholars participating in the dialogue with their own community. He said the last condition is working together and this requires respecting others’ nature and dignity as well as sense of justice.

http://www.tariqramadan.com/spip.php?article10290&lang=en - http://www.tariqramadan.com/spip.php?article10290&lang=en

What do you think?
 
Can Muslim-Christian dialogue succeed?
 
If yes, how?
 


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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage




Replies:
Posted By: keithnurse
Date Posted: 12 July 2008 at 2:51am
I think dialogue between any groups that disagree with each other can succeed if the follow the principles that you are talking about.  If you start with points of agreement and build trust before tackling thorny issues like the trinity vs oneness of God, the nature of Jesus Christ, etc.  A question that keeps coming up for me is this:  Muslims, if you want Christians to respect your beliefs are you going to show respect toward the Christian doctrine of the Trinity?  I am not say you have to believe the Trinity, I said will you show respect for it.  You cannot expect Christians to respect your belief about God if you don't show respect toward their belief about God.Also, for genuine dialogue to happen we have to approach the other person seeking to understand them rather than just trying to get them to understand us. 


Posted By: Bill2702
Date Posted: 12 July 2008 at 5:50am
Define success?


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Anything free is worth what you pay for it.


Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Date Posted: 12 July 2008 at 9:56am
Originally posted by keithnurse

I think dialogue between any groups that disagree with each other can succeed if the follow the principles that you are talking about.  If you start with points of agreement and build trust
 
Yes, good point. I agreee with you on that point
 
Muslims, if you want Christians to respect your beliefs are you going to show respect toward the Christian doctrine of the Trinity?  I am not say you have to believe the Trinity, I said will you show respect for it. 
 
Yes, respect the right and freedom of (some) Christians to believe in the trinity, if that's what they believe
 
Each person is free to believe what they find most convincing
 
for genuine dialogue to happen we have to approach the other person seeking to understand them rather than just trying to get them to understand us. 
 
Sure, it goes both ways
 
What else can help the dialogue succeed?
 


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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage



Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 12:55am
Types of Interfaith Dialogues:
 
I suggest that there are mainly two types of Interfaith dialogues:
 
1- The first type of dialogue is meant for better understanding people of other faiths, sharing what is common and understanding their points of views
 
2- The second type of dialogue is a more specialized type of academic dialogue which focuses on comparative studies of different religions, discussing beliefs and searching for the Truth
 
This second type of dialogue is normally for specilized scholars and is very limited as it normally takes place in closed circles, whereas the first type is more for ordinary people with ideas to be published for better understanding and peace
 
An example of this second type of dialogue is the Muslim initiative from 2007 titled (A Common Word Between You and Us):
 
http://www.acommonword.com/ - http://www.acommonword.com/
 
 
 


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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage



Posted By: keithnurse
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 1:32am
Thanks for the link to  "a common word" that sounds like a hopeful sign


Posted By: maghi85
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 5:53am
one of the things that may help in the Christian-Muslim dialogue is to look and learn from the attitude of the pre-modern Muslim societies.
how we still have pre-Islamic Christian, Jewish, Zoroastrian, Hindu, Buddhist communities still present in places where once Muslims ruled?


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"True religion invites us to become better people. False religion tells us that this has already occurred" - T.J. Winters
http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/mohdat - Old is Gold


Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 4:22pm
Originally posted by keithnurse

Thanks for the link to "a common word" that sounds like a hopeful sign
 
It's one of many initiatives for dialogue
 
These are the words of Sheikh Abdul Hakim Murad Winter from Cambridge, UK:
 
In our world of mass communications, those who seek to reach out to engage meaningfully with members of other faiths bear a particularly heavy responsibility.

Ours is a wounded world. Its tragedies are those of an unbridled individualism and materialism, manifested in the decay of family values and in the love of neighbour.

Humanity, say our scriptures, suffers when denied the love of the One God, and the love of neighbour. We are, as religions, facing a common threat and challenge in a way that may be historically unique, and we must see this as an opportunity, under Heaven, for real cooperation. We are accountable to God for the sincerity with which we seize this opportunity.

http://www.acommonword.com/lib/vatican/AH-Murad-Statement.pdf - http://www.acommonword.com/lib/vatican/AH-Murad-Statement.pdf



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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage



Posted By: Squeegie
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 4:23pm
"pre-modern Muslim societies"? 

Just curious. What differentiates a pre-modern Muslim society from a modern Muslim society?


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Posted By: maghi85
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 6:04pm
I would classify premodern Muslim societies as those before the collapse of the Ottoman empire with regards to Turkey and the middle-east. premodern Muslim society would also be the Muslim world precolonialism
 
reading the book "Jews of Islam" by Bernard Lewis would give a good idea of how premodern Muslim societies were like.
and plus there are many other books.
I would love to refer you to many other books if you're interested in reading...


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"True religion invites us to become better people. False religion tells us that this has already occurred" - T.J. Winters
http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/mohdat - Old is Gold


Posted By: maghi85
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 6:08pm
one of the major differences between premodern Muslim societies and modern (or postmodern) Muslim societies is that Muslims didn't have inferiority complex then and neither were they jealous or had malice or hatred towards the west - the type of hatred that follows oppression i.e..
lets not forget the treaty of Tripoli
they also had an identity, character, and were rich in meaningful culture and tradition.
unfortunately; in modern times everyone other than the west is suffering from this inferiority complex and lack of identity
guess why?


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"True religion invites us to become better people. False religion tells us that this has already occurred" - T.J. Winters
http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/mohdat - Old is Gold


Posted By: Aviatrix
Date Posted: 13 July 2008 at 6:26pm

There are a number of scholars who talk about a pre-modern world, and the modern world. Whether the societies are Muslim or not, the modern world is what has come with the industrial revolution and urbanization. Sometimes it means the last few decades, but you'll notice if you look at the last few centuries the world has increasingly moved away from a societial model which was dominated by the village culture. Now people live in big cities instead of small villages, they interact with more people but have fewer personal relationships and overall have to be more independent. Children move away from their families, there is more communication throughout the world and easier transportation, etc.

Pre-modern is more about place in time rather than behavior. The modern world overall functions differently than the "pre-modern" world.



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http://ibnatalhidayah.blogspot.com - - Amy's Blog


Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Date Posted: 14 July 2008 at 12:01am
Another Muslim reaction to (A Common Word Between Us) and the Muslim-Christian Dialogue:
 
H.E. Dr. Ali Gomaa's Statement Concerning the Yale Divinity School's Acceptance of the Common Word Initiative

We were very pleased to learn of Christian world leaders' acceptance of the "Common Terms" Initiative.

The Initiative is a positive agreement built on love of God and love for thy neighbor, both constituting the basis for the Initiative.

Let us all embark on our common grounds and move toward a fair and lasting peace in the entire world

(Dr. Ali Goma'a, Mufti of Egypt)

http://www.acommonword.com/lib/downloads/Statement-Kalima-Sawaa.pdf - http://www.acommonword.com/lib/downloads/Statement-Kalima-Sawaa.pdf



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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage



Posted By: maghi85
Date Posted: 14 July 2008 at 1:21pm
Dr. Ali Goma'a
hahaha love the Egyptian dialect
it's Juma'a in proper Arabic
Egyptians make the J G and Yemenis make the Q G



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"True religion invites us to become better people. False religion tells us that this has already occurred" - T.J. Winters
http://picasaweb.google.co.uk/mohdat - Old is Gold


Posted By: David
Date Posted: 17 July 2008 at 11:00am
"The meaning of the verse ("To be your way, and to me be mine") is that come what may, muslims will NEVER compromise on their denial of any kind association with God, whether is it perceived or unperceived.  So when it comes to Christianity, and discussing religion with Christians, muslims will ALWAYS deny the divinity of Christ, without any buts, ifs, or whatevers.  NOT in order to offend, but because when it comes to certain things, there is no compromise whatsoever."
Just wanted to include a quote from a discussion from a Muslim on this board on May 26. 
We should work together for peaceful living amongst ourselves.  However, there is little (if anything) in common between Christians and Muslims in terms of teaching what it takes for salvation to eternal life=therefore little to discuss.  I also disagree with the idea that only scholars or the academics should determine what is Truth.  From a Christian standpoint, that doesn't work for many, many reasons.  I can expand if anyone is interested. 
Plus, I'm interested to know what Muslims imagine would happen to Christian evangelizing efforts should some "Muslim-Christian dialogue" ultimately come to fruition and succeed.  I'd like some ideas.  It's unstated of course, but I imagine "success" of this dialogue is persuading the world and, unfortunately, some Christians to believe Christianity must be transformed to achieve "peace."  Actually making it more the feel of Islam.  Simply refer to the quote above.  For the record, I applaud the statement above because it recognizes the truth of the matter.  How can a Muslim have a dialogue with Christians (who believe their is NO compromise on teachings) to come have a dialogue aimed at some closer unity?  And vice versa?  So, that's why I think these initiatives are veiled efforts to rip the heart out of Christianity.  But what's new under the sun?  Satan has tried it since Adam and Eve.  The gates of hell will never prevail against the Church.   


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In Christ, David.


Posted By: Ted CharlotteNC
Date Posted: 17 July 2008 at 5:11pm
Originally posted by Al-Cordoby

What do you think?
 
Can Muslim-Christian dialogue succeed?
 
If yes, how?
 
 
Succeed at what? Ebony and Ivory, living together in perfect harmony, why can't we? (Old song if you did not know).
 
Nope, not a chance.
 
Being tolerant and keep from killing each other?
 
Maybe a percent or two less, but as long as governments run by men are involved, not much. But still 1% would be a huge number and worth trying.
 
How can we do it? Be the first to put down the sword is a start.
 
 
 


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Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just. - Thomas Jefferson


Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Date Posted: 19 July 2008 at 11:49pm
Originally posted by David

"The meaning of the verse ("To be your way, and to me be mine") is that come what may, muslims will NEVER compromise on their denial of any kind association with God, whether is it perceived or unperceived.  So when it comes to Christianity, and discussing religion with Christians, muslims will ALWAYS deny the divinity of Christ, without any buts, ifs, or whatevers.  NOT in order to offend, but because when it comes to certain things, there is no compromise whatsoever."
 
That's correct
 
A Muslim will always deny the divinity of Jesus, peace be upon him, and will never accept the concept of the trinity
 
Originally posted by David

We should work together for peaceful living amongst ourselves.  However, there is little (if anything) in common between Christians and Muslims in terms of teaching what it takes for salvation to eternal life=therefore little to discuss. 
 
As mentioned above, there are 2 main types of Christian-Muslim dialogues:
 
1- The first type of dialogue is meant for better understanding people of other faiths, sharing what is common and understanding their points of views
 
2- The second type of dialogue is a more specialized type of academic dialogue which focuses on comparative studies of different religions, discussing beliefs and searching for the Truth
 
The dialogue meant here is the first type, not the second
 
Dialogue for finding more common grounds and better understanding for peaceful co-existence
 
 


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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage



Posted By: David
Date Posted: 20 July 2008 at 8:59am

Based on your response, it sounds as if these threads promote a more secular discussion and not a religious one.  Correct? 



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In Christ, David.


Posted By: Al-Cordoby
Date Posted: 20 July 2008 at 4:43pm
Common grounds between Muslims and Christians include both
 
There are many shared values between the two faiths, like being good to neighbors, parents, the elderly and helping those in need for help. These are not theological issues, but rather human virtues
 
And at the end of the day each side has their own religion and followers on each side should respect the freedom of others to have their own faiths
 
(For you is your religion and for me is my religion) (109:6)
 


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Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

http://cortoby.blogspot.com/ - My Blog
http://www.muslimheritage.com/ - Muslim Heritage



Posted By: keithnurse
Date Posted: 20 July 2008 at 6:20pm
Originally posted by David

"The meaning of the verse ("To be your way, and to me be mine") is that come what may, muslims will NEVER compromise on their denial of any kind association with God, whether is it perceived or unperceived.  So when it comes to Christianity, and discussing religion with Christians, muslims will ALWAYS deny the divinity of Christ, without any buts, ifs, or whatevers.  NOT in order to offend, but because when it comes to certain things, there is no compromise whatsoever."
Just wanted to include a quote from a discussion from a Muslim on this board on May 26. 
We should work together for peaceful living amongst ourselves.  However, there is little (if anything) in common between Christians and Muslims in terms of teaching what it takes for salvation to eternal life=therefore little to discuss.  I also disagree with the idea that only scholars or the academics should determine what is Truth.  From a Christian standpoint, that doesn't work for many, many reasons.  I can expand if anyone is interested. 
Plus, I'm interested to know what Muslims imagine would happen to Christian evangelizing efforts should some "Muslim-Christian dialogue" ultimately come to fruition and succeed.  I'd like some ideas.  It's unstated of course, but I imagine "success" of this dialogue is persuading the world and, unfortunately, some Christians to believe Christianity must be transformed to achieve "peace."  Actually making it more the feel of Islam.  Simply refer to the quote above.  For the record, I applaud the statement above because it recognizes the truth of the matter.  How can a Muslim have a dialogue with Christians (who believe their is NO compromise on teachings) to come have a dialogue aimed at some closer unity?  And vice versa?  So, that's why I think these initiatives are veiled efforts to rip the heart out of Christianity.  But what's new under the sun?  Satan has tried it since Adam and Eve.  The gates of hell will never prevail against the Church.   
 
I agree that dialogue should not be about compromising on religious doctrine.  There are Muslims who say the same thing as you are saying, that dialogue is a veiled attempt to rip the heart out of Islam, making Islam more appealing to the West. This is the second form of dialogue that a previous post mentioned.  Do you support the first type of dialogue? which is not about theology, but about human beings of different religions getting to know each other as human beings?


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Unitarian Universalist
www.uua.org


Posted By: David
Date Posted: 20 July 2008 at 6:20pm

I have a little better understanding.  Thanks. 

Let me clarify my point and my concern with all the talk about finding "common ground" between our religions.  The shared values are fine and good and the world would be a better place if everyone performed them all the time perfectly.  These values are not common because of the motivation behind them.  Christians perform these good works from the basis of Christ living in us and motivating us by love of Him.  I would be very surprised to hear a Muslim agree with this.  Muslims are motivated to perform these things by something other.  I think approaching discussion about "common grounds" that starts from "shared values" without mentioning the motivations behind those values would injure everyone involved at a spiritual level. 
 
So, why can't governments handle this?  All (or most) governments agree these values are fine things and promote them. 
 
 
 


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In Christ, David.


Posted By: David
Date Posted: 20 July 2008 at 6:24pm

keithnurse: Of course I support a dialogue on human beings of different religions getting to know each other  as human beings.  Personally, I enjoy meeting people from other cultures and learning about their cultures.  If I had unlimited funds, I'd be a world traveler. 



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In Christ, David.



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