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Benefits and risks of secularization in Muslim-Christian sphere



Milan, 15 June 2013: The ambiguities of secularization and its impact on the relationship between Muslims and Christians, but its impact on the mindset of eastern and western society: this will be the focus of debate and discussion at this year's meeting of the Oasis Scientific Committee, the magazine founded 10 years ago by Card. Angelo Scola, then Patriarch of Venice and now archbishop of Milan.

The Committee meets this year at Milan on 17 and 18 June, with a full program of key note addresses from Saudi Arabia to Morocco and Turkey, Egypt, Iran, Nigeria. The two day gathering at Milan State University, will discuss the theme: "On the edge. Christians and Muslims caught between secularism and ideology."

Under the presidency of Card. Scola, about 70 guests from around the world will discuss how secularization is transforming East and West. Especially of how the "Arab spring" is prompting Muslims to consider a concept of the secular society that overshadows religious affiliation and opens up to living with other religions, with the Christians in particular.

At the same time, a secularization is coming to light, in reaction to a war-like Islamic fundamentalism that often produces victims even among moderate Muslims.

In the West, secularism is moving religious communities to demand space in society and is also causing a surge of fundamentalism among Muslims that stigmatize such secularism as "atheist".

This mutual feeding of extremes requires a thought and balance. In this regard, on the first day of the conference, Card. Scola will give a presentation titled "A synthesis: Europe's mission."

The most prominent Muslim personalities include: Sayyid Jawad al-Khoei, Assistant Secretary-General of the al-Khoei Foundation, Najaf (Iraq); Muhammad Muhanna, director of the Sufi Academy and professor of law at al- Azhar University (Cairo, Egypt); Sami Angawi, President of the Al- Makkiyah Al-Madaniyah, (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia).

For the Christian world many bishops and priests of the Arab world and North Africa, India and Nigeria have been invited.

For the western world, there will be many academics from the United States, Germany, Britain, France and Italy.

Oasis was founded in 2004. The committee meets annually in June to explore a theme that then becomes the track for the annual work of the Foundation and its instruments: the multilingual biannual magazine (4 editions in Italian, English-Arabic, French-Arabic, English -Urdu), the fortnightly newsletter (in Italian, English, French, Spanish and Arabic), books and website.

Source: AsiaNews




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