Welcome to the homophilosophicus interfaith project! Our world is a place which is shaped and coloured by the presence of religion; other than playing a central rôle in many of our lives, religion has had in immeasurable impact on the history of the world and the development of human culture. Sadly this impact has not always been to the benefit of humanity or the world, and this regrettable fact has damaged the lives of many and constitutes no small part of the reason why some would prefer to see religion and religious opinion removed from the secular platform. Yet there are countless examples of good and righteous action which has sprung from the well-springs of religious faith. It is for this reason that we must begin anew the re-presentation of religion to an increasingly confused and often hostile world.
The aim of the interfaith project is to bring religious people, from all traditions and walks of life, in the blogosphere together in a tolerant and supportive environment in order to give expression to religious voices on socially relevant issues which affect us all. It is not the purpose of this dialogue to create an arena where truth claims are pitted against one another, but rather to shed greater light on that essential witness of God which is an integral part of the human experience. From month to month contributors shall be invited to give their own thoughts and reflections, from their own personal faith journeys, on a wide range of topics and issues which are relevant in the public arena. By this it is hoped that each one of us and our readers will see something of the unity which runs through our different faiths and traditions.
It is foolishness to presume to know the mind of God. From this simple acknowledgement we must turn to our sisters and brothers around the world, to our neighbours and our friends in search of a broader answer to the search for meaning. We are not here to proclaim any particular truth, only that truth which is true to ourselves. All that we are able to do is to speak of God and our personal faith from where we are, relative to the world around us. This is the purpose of the interfaith project; to tell our story of faith, as we experience it, while we listen to the witness of others. From this process of sharing and listening we may arrive at a place where we no longer see a world of competing truths, but a world of human beings struggling with the same eternal questions.
The criteria for interfaith dialogue
α Each contributor must come from a religious tradition and practice their faith, or be adequately versed in an academic discipline relating to faith dialogue. β Every contributor or dialogue partner must be willing to learn; that is to change and develop in their understanding of reality and then act accordingly. γ Each contributor and dialogue partner must come to the discussion with complete honesty, integrity and sincerity, and each participant must assume complete honesty and sincerity in their dialogue partners. δ Every contributor and dialogue partner must come to the discussion without prejudice; assuming nothing of the beliefs and opinions of others. ε It must be accepted that dialogue can happy only between equals. Anyone entering into dialogue must be prepared to be at least minimally self-critical of both themselves and of the religious tradition to which they belong. ζ Contributors and dialogue partners must recognise that they do not ‘represent’ their religious tradition, but simply speak as a person from that tradition. η Every contributor and dialogue partner must eventually be prepared to experience the belief of their partner ‘from within.’ θ At all times, and without exception, every contributor and dialogue partner must accept and respect the humanity and dignity of their dialogue partner.
Note on Proselytising: There are many people who believe sincerely that spreading the truth of their faith is an integral part of their religious world-view. We understand this at homophilosophicus and we do not wish to diminish the importance of their faith in any way. Yet it is important that every contributor and commenter feels comfortable enough to share their own experiences in a welcome and supportive environment. It is for this reason that we ask people to refrain from attempting to convince others of ‘the truth as they see it.’ By all means discussion about faith is encouraged; insofar as this discussion is of ones’ own faith as it is experienced by them. Overt or circuitous attempts to proselytise others will be met with a friendly reminder of this request. Repeated attempts will find the offending party placed on the moderation list, and aggressive and offensive commenters will be banned – permanently. This said, we hope that everyone will heed this request and have fun in a friendly, educational and supportive environment.
If you feel that you have something to say, or that you might be interested in contributing to the homophilosophicus interfaith project, please take the time to fill out the form below and we will get back in touch with you.