Most Americans have become familiar with the word jihad, and we've come to understand it as "Holy War." Similarly, most Americans, not just Christians, have become accustomed to hearing politicians and the media refer to U.S. military actions as "Just Wars." But how accurately are these terms being bandied about? Is one bad and the other good, as is sometimes implied? Or are jihad and war - just or unjust - the same thing?
At this year's Pax Christi Metro New York Fall Assembly, Fr. Patrick Ryan, SJ, will help us gain far better, more precise answers to these questions. For example, he will challenge the notion that Jihad, rendered in English as "holy war," is a Muslim concept. In fact, in the Qur'an and authentic sources of the Islamic tradition jihad is more subjective, denoting the effort or struggle one must exert in order to free oneself from oppression by others or by one's own vices.
Similarly, he will provide a historic context for the concept of just war and then examine it more deeply. He will explain that the distinction between just war and unjust war in the Christian tradition, dating from the time of Saint Augustine, arose in the aftermath of the Christianization of the Roman Empire. The need to qualify wars as just or unjust seldom arose earlier, although notable Christian martyrs rejected participation in Roman imperial wars.
Finally, Fr Ryan will juxtapose Jihad and Just War, so we can see where, if at all, they intersect.
While Fr Ryan, Professor of Religion and Society at Fordham University with a doctorate in the comparative history of religion specializing in Arabic and Islamic studies, is our keynote speaker, we want to welcome diverse voices into the subsequent discussion.
Please join us on Saturday, October 3rd, from 1 to 4 PM in the parish hall of Immaculate Conception Church, 389 E. 150th Street, Bronx, NY. Contact Pax Christi Metro New York, 371 Sixth Avenue, 212-420-0250, or [email protected] to register or for further details.
You can also register at www.nycharities.org. Donation: $20, or $15 with a student ID
See also: ICN 5 September 2015 New York: Pax Christi Metro to commemorate 9/11 www.indcatholicnews.com/news.php?viewStory=28233
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