Saturday, September 16, 2006

Understanding the Pope's Islam Remarks - September 12

Samir Khalil Samir, sj, an Egyptian Jesuit very familiar with both the pope and the Muslim religion sets the Pope's text to context in this excellent analysis for AsiaNews, of the speech the Pope made to an academic audience at the Unviersity of Regensburg on September 12, which has now needlessly turned controversial.

The Pope's speech: lending Islam a helping hand to avoid a downward spiral

by Samir Khalil Samir, sj

Muslim criticism against the Pope's remarks is mounting, but no one has actually read the whole speech. Benedict XVI criticises violence and proposes a reasonable alternative that could lead to a new Golden Age.

15 September, 2006

Beirut (AsiaNews) - Negative reactions in the Arab and Muslim world to the remarks made by Benedict XVI at Regensburg University are exaggerated and misplaced. Protest marches are being organised everywhere in ways that bring to mind what happened in the wake of the publication of the blasphemous Muhammad cartoons. But one thing is clear. No one, and I mean NO ONE, has fully read what the Pope said.

An English translation of the speech, which was in German, was released yesterday, a French version is not yet ready, and no translation has been made in any Eastern language. Therefore, all the attacks so far are based on a few quotes and excerpts liberally taken by Western news agencies on what the Pope said about Islam, which was only ten per cent of his speech. But this ten per cent must be understood against the whole thing.

Read the full story here...

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