Sunday, September 17, 2006

Pope Benedict XVI and Islam: What Did He Say?

Last week, Pope Benedict XVI gave a talk at the university where he used to teach. His talk was on the greater role of reason in theological and philosophical dialogue, but one portion of the talk--the relation of reason to certain teachings or practices of Islam--is getting a lot of publicity.

Here's the talk: "Faith, Reason and the University: Memories and Reflections"

Mark Brumley offers a great summary:

This incident can be summarized: The pope says reason and religion must go together for each to be able to remain true to itself. Some Muslims object and throw a fit, thus proving the pope right.

Here are some links to those who have a whole lot of info, background, and up-to-date commentary on the continuing "controversy":

Pope Benedict XVI on "Faith, Reason and the University" - Regensburg, 2006 by Chris Blosser, who has once again compiled a great round-up of links

The Controversy over Pope Benedict's Remarks on Islam by Chris Blosser

The Regensburg Lecture: Thinking Rightly About God and Man Fr. James V. Schall, S.J.
Rioters' madness shames Muslim world by Fr. Raymond J. de Souza, a great priest I got to know during some Acton-related events in the 90's; make the time to read his essay

Italian nun killed;Pope sorry for Muslim reaction by Michelle Malkin

Pope Rage on the Internet;church bombings in Gaza by Michelle Malkin

I support the Pope by Michelle Malkin

"The Pope’s speech: lending Islam a helping hand to avoid a downward spiral" by Samir Khalil Samir, sj

And at Ignatius Press's blog: Insight Scoop:

Pope's Comments on his Regensburg Lecture

"radical Christianity is just as threatening as radical Islam..."

Vatican Statement on Muslim Anger At Pope's Speech

European leaders back Benedict

The Real Story

Our threats of violence prove how peaceful we really are

Vatican defends pope’s remarks on Islam

The Vatican has issued some statements since where the Pope and/or a spokesman offer a response to some of the criticism.

Aside from all that, do words--however much they may be interpreted in a negative way, even if rightly so--do words from one Christian, even a very important Christian, justify the violence from Muslims that has resulted?

What is it about these Muslims that no criticism, even if wrong, will be tolerated? Are they not proving the point of the quoted passage in the Pope's speech that Muslim use of violence in this way is contrary to reason? Why do they not pursue the road of reason as a response rather than the ways of violence and intimidation?

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