What is the Path for Muslims and Other Religions that Leads to a Common, Peaceful Future?

Posted in Broader Middle East | 25-May-05 | Author: Dieter Farwick

Abbas J. Ali: "Elements of fruitful relationship and peaceful coexistence are in place"

Our newsletter “Muslims and Christians: Dialog is needed now" from March 2, 2005, triggered some interesting and controversial comments from both sides.

Some Christians accused us of being too naïve and too soft in dealing with Muslims. They said we did not understand the real character of Islam and its final objective: To turn the world into an Islamic society. Our attempt to draw a line between “moderate Muslims” and “Islamic extremists and terrorists” was not accepted. For some Christians, this distinction does not exist. On the other hand, we were accused by some Muslims of not understanding their religion and being too narrow minded with our prejudices.

I asked one of our critics to write a newsletter for us outlining his view as a Muslim. I am glad to be able to present his essay, facing comments that we now even offer a platform for Muslims.

Two of our guidelines are: “Networking a better and safer world “ and promoting “education for tolerance.” In my view, we have no choice but to give “critical dialog” a chance. We should encourage moderates of all religions to come together and have open discussions. All moderates should openly distance themselves from “extremist and terrorist attacks.” There is no religion that allows the killing of innocent people. Too often, religion was and has been misused for totally different aims and objectives. We all should stop it now.

Our author Mr. Abbas J. Ali, is a professor and lives in the United States. He reverts to the roots of Western-Islamic irritations, misunderstandings and even conflicts. His nine recommendations at the end of his essay can be seen as a framework for the common way ahead and a starting point for a better, mutual understanding.