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Topics of violence, just war focus of Interreligious exploration

Topics of violence, just war focus of Interreligious exploration

Photo: Fabian Schmidmeier

02 October 2019

A workshop held 18-20 September in Erlangen, Germany explored the concepts of violence and just war. Part of the project “Key Concepts in Interreligious Dialogue” established by Dr George Tamer, the workshop tied the concepts to contemporary life.

Presenters included Rabbi Dr Reuven Firestone; Rabbi Dr Dan Polish; Prof. Dr Rubén Rosario Rodríguez; Prof. Dr Heinz-Gerhard Justenhoven; Dr Patrice Brodeur; and Prof. Dr Suleiman Ali Mourad.

Participants reported they took away both constructive and challenging insights. Through the exploration, said participant Dr Clare Amos, “it became clear that, due to the hegemony of Christianity in western academic life, concepts such as ‘just war’ come primarily out of the Christian theological tradition, and that even though Judaism and Islam are wrestling with the same underlying issues it is not always easy or helpful to fit their insights into the precise intellectual boxes which Christianity offers.”

Amos, former programme coordinator for interreligious dialogue at the World Council of Churches (WCC), is a member of the advisory board for the project.

The “Key Concepts in Interreligious Dialogue” project, based at the Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen has entered a new phase of its life. The project is a partnership between the university in Erlangen and a variety of other organisations, including the WCC. It explores a number of key concepts from the Christian, Jewish and Muslim perspectives, initially via a workshop that then bears fruit in a monograph. The first monograph which looks at the concept of freedom in the three religions has just been published.


WCC’s work on Strengthening inter-religious trust and respect