[gha] Re: Ciencia y Paz Global: propuesta de la GHA para el G20

  • From: rsieb3@xxxxxxx
  • To: gha@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 27 Aug 2013 21:20:48 -0400 (EDT)



XII.International Workshop
Religionand Civil Society:

November20 - 25, 2013, Yalta, Livadia (Crimea, Ukraine)

Organizers:WesternMichigan University(USA) and TAURIDA 

Weare writing this letter to you, in order to invite you wholeheartedlyto our 
12th. international course on Religion andCivil Society: Between Fundamentalism 
and Secularization, totake  place in Yalta, Livadia, Crimea, Ukraine, November 
20-25, 2013.It is a sister - course to our international Dubrovnik, 
Croatia,course on the  Future of Religion, in every April since 1977 without 
interruption.Our new theme in Yalta is certainly of highest actuality in 
thepresent world-historical paradigm-change from Modernity toPost-Modernity:  
particularly  after the global financial and fiscalcrisis of 2008, the 
consequences of which still continue around theglobe. The following few 
thoughts and ideas may help us to stimulateand give guidance  to our discourse, 
and may inspire our papers.
In the perspective of the critical theory of religion,or  comparative, 
dialectical religiology, informed by Kant, Fichte,Schelling, Hegel, Marx, 
Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Schopenhauer, Freud,Horkheimer, Benjamin, Adorno, 
Fromm, Marcuse, Habermas, and Honneth, we presuppose a working definition of 
religion. According toNietzsche, no definition can be given of things, which 
have ahistory, and are therefore still in motion. Religion is moving 
likeeverything else: pantarei, as Heracleitosput it. But we can at least have a 
working definition.We definereligion with the Latin tradition as re-ligio,as 
binding back of man to the Infinite. Wedefine religion with Kant, 
Fichte,Schelling, and Hegel as the practical relationship of man to 
theThing-in-itself, the Absolute, the Unconditional, the good Infinite.We 
define religion with Bloch as longing forwholeness. Wedefine religion with 
Horkheimer and Adornoas longing for thetotally Other than the horror and terror 
of nature and history;as yearning for perfect justice andunconditional 
love;asthe longing, that the murderer shall nottriumph over the innocent 
victim: at least not ultimately.We define religion with Fromm as X-Experience. 
We define religionwith Habermas as system of interpretation ofreality, and 
orientation of action. Ofcourse, many other working definitions of religion are 
possible, maythey come from the positivistic Right, or  from the dialectical 
Left.We just want to be clear, and understandable, and 
comprehensibleconcerning, what we are talking about, when we  use the word 
religionin our discourse. We define discourseas future-oriented remembrance of 
human suffering, with the practicalintent to diminish it: particularly the 
suffering, which originatesfrom the pathology of reason and freedom in the 
secular as well as inthe religious dimension
The victorious,  neo-conservative counter-revolution of1989 restored once more 
civil society in Eastern and Central Europe,which had been repressed by the 
socialist states for almost 70 years,following more  Platon’s than Hegel's, or 
Marx's way of thinking.With the restoration of civil society came also the 
return ofbourgeois religion. With the restoration of civil society also 
openedup once more the internal antagonism between the bourgeoisie and 
theworking class, the tragedy of class division and struggle, as well asthe 
discrepancy between the sacred and the profane. In our discourse,we are mainly 
concerned with the antagonism between the religious andthe secular, without, 
however, neglecting other, connectedcontradictions. While the opposition 
between the sacred and theprofane had long been prepared in Judaism, 
Christianity, and Islam,it was radicalized to its extreme in modern civil 
society sinceMartin Luther and Galileo Galilei, since the Reformation and 
theRenaissance, since the bourgeois and socialist enlightenmentmovements and 
revolutions, since the classical and proletarianidealism. This radicalization 
continues today from one culture warissue to the other, from day to day, and 
from week to week,concerning a large variety of topics in all dimensions of 
social life- individual, family, society state, history, and culture: 
abortion,contraception, divorce, homosexual and Lesbian unions, stem 
cellresearch, eugenics, euthanasia, separation of Church, or Umma,  andstate, 
war and peace, etc.. With the deepening of the anatgonismbetween the sacred and 
the profane, splits have also occured insidethe religious communities between 
naive and educated believers;between believers who concentrate on their 
identity, revelation, andtradition, and those who are open toward the world and 
willing tochange. The Protestant Reformation, being in itself a deeplyreligious 
movement, was, nevertheless, the first form, in whichChristianity adjusted 
itself to the rising secular Modernity. Withthe deepening of the discrepancy 
between the sacred and the profane,splits occured also in the secular 
community: the dialectic ofenlightenment: rationalization turned into 
irrationality; integrationtuned into disintegration; demythologization turned 
intoremythologization; disenchantment turned into reenchantment: theMyth of the 
20thCentury, whichunfortunately reaches into the 21stcentury. Of course, there 
was not only adialectic of enlightenment, but also a dialectic of religion: 
thereligion of love, after having been persecuted and martyrized for 300years, 
produced itself - once having come to power- heresy trials,crusades, 
witchhunts, the Holy Inquisition, etc.; the religion oftruth allowed itself to 
be used as ideology and necessary appearanceby slaveholders, feudal lords and 
capitalists: ideolgy understoodcritically as false consciousness, as masking of 
particular nationaland class interests, shortly as untruth. The goal of our 
discourseis, to contribute to the possible mediation and reconciliation of 
theantinomy and discrepancy between the religious and the secular,religious 
fundamentalism and secularization, and to overcomereligious as well as secular 
pathology and criminology, religious aswell as political terror, as we can find 
it in this moment of historyin Syria and Egypt, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and 
Iraq, and elsewhere. 
        Inthe view of the critical theory of religion, religious 
fundamentalismappeared with the development and deepening of the modern 
antagonismbetween the religious and the secular. Fundamentalism is a 
modernphenomenon. The fundamentalist is a religious believer,who has been 
deeply shocked by the bourgeois, Marxian, and Freudianenlightenment. He feels 
the very foundations of his faith and hismorality being shaken. The center does 
not hold any longer! Thefundamentalist  does not know any longer, how to 
interpret realityand how to orientate actions for himself, and for his family, 
and frhis children and grandchildren, concerning a large variety of culturewar 
issues. The grandmother still thought that premarital sex,divorce, abortion, 
homosexuality, negative artificial birth control, etc. were against God's will, 
and thus bad. The mother may stillthink, that contraception, divorce, 
euthanasia, or gay marriages werenot entirely right, but at the same time 
admits, that sometimes suchactions may be necessary. The daughter can not even 
remember, whather Orthodox, Catholic, or Baptist  grandmother once thought, 
andthus has no problem any longer with marriage equality forheterosexuals and 
homosexuals, pre- or extra-marital relations,divorce, contraception, stemcell 
research. Etc.. For the daughter,since everybody does it, it must be right. The 
fundamentalist could,of course, move from his first religious naivite, in which 
heaccepted revelation and tradition and their norms without questions,through 
higher criticism, to  a second naivite, in which he would beable to mediate and 
reconcile a changed faith and a changedenlightenment: the dialectic of religion 
and enlightenment, and thedialectic in religion and in enlightenment would be 
resolved. Highercriticism destroyes religion as little, as a critical 
musicologydestroyes Beethoven or Mozart: to the contrary. However, thereligious 
fundamentalist is frightened by the onslaught of theenlightenment movements, 
and thus instead of going foreward toward asecond naivite, he flees backword to 
the fathers, and to the literaryinterpretation of revelation and tradition, 
which the fathers seldom,or never practiced. Thus, the  religious 
fundamemtalist parents maydeny their cancer-ill child chemotherapy, because it 
is supposedlyagainst Scripture,which, of course, knew nothing of it, and have 
tobe forced by the secular courts, to allow the advcanced treatment,since the 
child would otherwise die. Fundamentalist parents may denyblood transfusion to 
the child, because the Bible supposedly forbidsit. A mega-church in Texas told 
its believers, that vaccination ofchildren against measels was against the 
Bible, and may thereby havecontributed to an epidemic. The fundamentalist 
mother may drive hergay son into suicide, because she can not accept him as he 
is, sincethe Book Genesisor Leviticuscondemns Sodomy.It may also happen, that 
fundamentalists condemn modernity, but atthe same time use all the most 
advanced modern products, like cars,airplanes, medicine, atomic energy, 
weappons, etc., and thus fallinto hypocrisy. The authoritarian personalty of 
the religiousfundamentalist  is often too rigid,  in order to allow for a 
liberalreinterpretation of ancient sacred texts. Thus a liberal Rabbi mayvery 
well argue, that the ban on homosexuality in the book Leviticuswas really 
directed specifically against male temple prostitution inhonor of matriarchal 
divinties. Since the situation has changed, thenorm has become obsolete and  
invalid.The liberal Christian Ministermay argue, that the story of Sodom and 
Gomorrah was directed againstgroup rape and violence, and not against 
homosexuality in general. Hemay remind the believers, that for  Isaiah Sodom 
was destroyed, notbecause of homosexuality, but because the rich women in Sodom 
wereunjust, and thus did not share their wealth with the poor classes;and for 
Rabbi Jesus of Nazareth Sodom was destroyed, because itviolated hospitality, 
and in any case the men of Sodom would bebetter off on Judgement Day than the 
present men of Tyrus, who didnot want to repent. There are indeed legitimate 
possibilities toresolve the problem of fundamentalism. Certainly, it has to 
beresolved in discourse. Where there is no discourse, there is war! Asmodernity 
is globalized, fundamentalism appears in all living worldreligions. Certainly, 
fundamentalism has been at work in the ArabicSpring: the Islamic Brotherhood. 
It is at work in the present bloodycrisis in Syria and Egypt. Without peace 
inside the world religionsbetween the fundamentalist and liberal forces, and 
among thereligions, there can be no peace among the nations.There can be 
nopeace among the world religions without discourse among them. Therecan be no 
discourse among the world religions without fundamentalresearch in them, which 
deals with all the problems, whichfundamentalism raises out of its not entirely 
unfounded  andungrounded fear, that the liberalization of religion means its 
end. Alack of discourse between the secular West and the Islamic Near East,may 
lead to a situation, in which the former treats the latter like amonkey a live 
granade: e.g in the case of the Syrian civil war. Inany case, we want to help 
to prevent the discourse between thereligious and the secular community from 
being closed, be itfundamentalistically on the religious side, or 
positivistically, ornaturalistically on the scientific side. 
        In the perspective of the comparative, criticalreligiology, 
secularization meant originally the expropriation ofChurch property by the more 
and more secular state. Suchsecularization happened already during the 
Protestant Reformation,and then again during the bourgeoise and socialist 
enlightenmentmovements and revolutions. Henry VIII. secularized the property 
ofthe monastic orders in England. Under Napoleon's influence Germanstates 
secularized Church property and compensated the Church for itsterritorial loss 
by paying the clergy for centuries. Even AdolfHitler's Empire Concordate with 
the Vatican of 1934, which is stillvalid today in the German Federal Republic, 
honored this compensationpromise.  Secularization in the broader sense happened 
in theprocess, in which the natural and social sciences withdrew fromChurch 
control. It seemed more and more, that God had only createdthe religious 
sphere, and that nature and human society were entirelysecular, and thus could 
be studied  and dealt with  practically andtechnolgically, as if God did not 
exist. When Copernicus presented tothe Pope the heliocentric paradigm, to 
replace the Ptolemaeic model,according to which the Hebrew Bible, the New 
Testament, and the HolyQu'ran had been written, Rome raised no objections. 
Science was nothreat to faith. However, 70 years later, the Holy 
Inquisitionthreated the 70 years old Galileo Galilei with torture instruments, 
-the inquisition invented water boarding, which later on was inheritedby the SS 
and the CIA - and forced him, to rescind the sameheliocentric paradigm, which 
Copernicus had taught withouteccesiastical objections. In the meantime, the 
Renaissance hadproceeded, and the  Protestant Reformation of 1517 had happened, 
andin consequence modern states started to be  formed, and thescientific 
revolution took place, and the process of secularizationcame into full swing. 
The Holy Inquisition asked the old GalileoGalile to verify further his 
heliocentric hypothesis throughsharpening  the lenses of his telescope, and 
through improveing hismathematical formulas. Galileo Galilei, who on his part 
was certainof the truth of his heliocentric thesis, told the  
inquistor-monks,that they were children and stupid, and that they should sit 
down andstudy, and do serious  research. The purpose of the Holy Inqusitionwas 
the preservation of the unity of faith,in reality it helped topromote the 
desitegration of Western Christianity. Itstorture-threats against the old 
Galileo Galilei produced even greatersympathy for him in Europe, and while was 
not martyr material andrescinded against his conscience, his daughter sent his 
comtroversialbook to lobral Hollabdm where it was published. The truth can not 
berepressed for ever. The good Purpose of the Holy Inquisition did notsanctify 
its immoral and therefore inadequate means. To be sure, inthe Galileo Galilei 
case the inquisitors wanted to gain time, inorder  to protect the faith of the 
uneducated believers in Italy andEurope. Like a feudal lord may defend his 
castle at the most externalwall, so that the enemy may have a harder time to 
penetrate thecenter, the Church tried to protect the faith already in 
thedimension of cosmology, the sun system, so that scientific secularismmay not 
penetrate later on the spheres of biology, and economics, andpsychology, and 
finally the  faith in Trinity and Incarnation itself,as indeed it happened in 
the process of  scientific enlightenmentthrough Darwin, Voltaire, Rousseau, 
Marx, and Freud, during thefollowing four centuries. In this process of 
secularization,theChurch lost all rearguard struggles  against science, in 
spite oftheologians, who made outstandig contributions to modern 
physics,biology, and anthropology, - the Peking Man was discovered by aJesuit, 
and the Big Bang Theory was developed by a Belgian priest -and had to 
accomodate sooner, and mostly later, and thus lost muchcredibility, which loss 
did great harm and damage to its mission ofredemption and liberation throughout 
modernity.  While John Paul IIhad already admitted, that the Holy Inquisition 
may have made amistake in the Galileo case, Pope Benedict XVI in his all-out 
waragainst secularity and modernity, which secret crusade imperiled theChurch, 
denied again the admission of his predecessor, and thusregressed, and thus was 
not allowed to visit the secular Universityof Rome. Europeans called Benedict 
XVI. their Taliban, inspite of thefact, that he was not really a 
fundamentalist, but rather a patristicscholar of the Greek and Roman Church 
Fathers,who participated in theHellenistic enlightement. Pope Benedict XVI. had 
to resignprematurely, because   not old age alone, but rather the 
enormouspressure of secularity from outside, and of at least 90 
world-opentheologians from inside, whom he tried to silence already as 
CardinalRatzinger, and Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of 
Faith,the former Holy Inqisition. Whoever hopes for any de-secularizationtoday, 
or for the return of religion to its powerful Medievalposition, must remember 
the centuries of  tragic  frustration, whichthe Church has suffered  in its 
struggle against secularization onall its levels, because it could not grant a 
relative autonomy to theindividual, family, society, state, history and 
culture, includingart, relogion, philosophy and science. Other  world religions 
canlearn from the fate of Christianity, as they encounter the onslaughtof the 
globalizing secularization process, and avoid the Christianmistakes. When some 
philosophers and sociologists speak  today of apost-secular society, they do 
not really believe, that secularizationhas come to its end.Their own continuing 
secularity gives witness tothat. They simply ackknowledge, that the predictions 
concerning theend of religion by Nietzsche, or Marx, were premature. They may 
alsoargue, that religion as part of the human history of reason, is notto be 
negated generally and abstractly, but rather specifically andconcretely: that 
it is not only to be criticized, but also to berescued through being sublated, 
inverted, elevated, and fulfilled ina new form. They know, that something is 
missing in the secularmodern and post-modern world, and that religion may need 
Particular Topics
        Our discourse shall include the following specifictopics:

• Religiousfundamentalism as a response to the challenges of globalization 
ofthe cultural environment;
• Religious,civilizational, ethnic identity and conflicts of values;
• Therelationship of Islam and Christianity;
• TheClash of Civilizations: Myth or Reality?
• Therole of the religious factor in ethnic conflict;
• Theethno-religious dimension of geopolitical projects;
• Tolerance:philosophical, ethical and psychological aspects;
• Humanand social capital: the interaction parameters;
• Socialnetworks as a factor in the structuring of civil society;
• Themedia and the cultural and symbolic resources of virtualized society;
• Religionand sustainable development;
• Linguisticaspects of cross-cultural and inter-religious communications.

Thelist of specific issues is open for continuation.

Two Roundtables will be held within the framework of the Workshop:
“Orthodox       civilization and traditional values” (in commemoration of       
Alexander Panarin);             

“The    “Arab Spring” and the future of the Middle East: fundamentalism or 

Chairs of the Workshop:

Dr.Rudolf Siebert, Professor of the Department of Comparative Religionat 
Western Michigan University (USA), Director of the Center forHumanistic Future 
Studies, Director of the International course onthe “Future of Religion” at the 
Inter-University Center forPost-Graduate Studies in Dubrovnik, Croatia 

Dr.Tatyana Senyushkina,Professor of the Department of Political Science and 
InternationalRelations at Taurida National V.I. Vernadsky University 
(Ukraine),Director of the Network of Cultural Exchange and Interethnic 

Participants’presentations will be published after the workshop.

Registrationfee: $100 USD to bepaid upon arrival, for an accompanying person – 
$50 USD.
Registrationfee includes conference materials (badge, program, list 
ofparticipants), coffee breaks, welcoming dinner and concert,
publication (3 pages) and certificate of participation.Permissible amount of 
additional written materials - up to 12 pages($ 7 USD per page).

Languages:English, Russian, Ukrainian

TheBristol Hotel, 10 Roosevelt St., Crimea, Yalta 
Prices:$80 – 275 USDper room per night. 
Theprice includes accommodation, breakfast, swimming pool, fitness hall,luggage 
service, WI-FI, VAT, beach-solarium.

Tofind out about other, cheaper options of accommodation, please feelfreeto 
contact the Organizing Committee.

GuidedTours:The Livadia Palace of the last Russian Tzar Nikolay II in Yalta; 
ThePalace of Alexander III in Massandra (Massandra Palace); 
TheNikitsky Botanical Garden; The Chekhov House-Museum in Yalta; TheOrthodox 
churches of the Southern coast of the Crimea; 
TheCrimean oldest winery Massandra: the largest wine collection (about amillion 
bottles) on the globe and Famous Wine Tasting.

Toparticipate in the Workshop,please send your applicationform no later 
than15October, 2013 on the following address:

Moreinformationabout the workshop is on the web-site: http://nce.sevhost.net
andon the Facebook page of the 

Nameof the Participant 

Topicof the Presentation 

Scientificdegree/Student involvement 



Contactphone number (please, indicate the area and country code):
Postaladdress for sending printed Workshop Materials: 

Signature(if sent by regular 
Dateof filling 

Toparticipate in the Workshop, please send your applicationno later than 
15October, 2013 on the following address: nce@xxxxxxx,tsenyushkina@xxxxxxxxxx

Moreinformation about the workshop is on the web-site:http://nce.sevhost.netand 
on the Facebook page of theWorkshop: 

-----Original Message-----
From: Charles Mercieca <mercieca@xxxxxxxxxxx>
To: gha <gha@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Cc: leo.semashko <leo.semashko@xxxxxxxxx>; Lutreja7 <Lutreja7@xxxxxxxxx>; - 
Lana Yang <lanayang@xxxxxxx>; sufibana7 <sufibana7@xxxxxxxxx>; pathak06 
<pathak06@xxxxxxxxx>; - Sr. Steve Varatharajan <iaewp.org@xxxxxxxxx>; - 
Terrence Paupp <tpaupp@xxxxxxx>; gong3000 <gong3000@xxxxxx>; naahama.shalom 
<naahama.shalom@xxxxxxxxx>; azconacristina <azconacristina@xxxxxxxxxxx>; 
lidasherafatmand <lidasherafatmand@xxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Tue, Aug 27, 2013 1:06 pm
Subject: [gha] Re: Ciencia y Paz Global: propuesta de la GHA para el G20

August 27, 2013
Dear Leo:
                Thanks for the valuable leadership which you have been 
providing in the sphere of global harmony and world peace. 
Many have been encouraged and stimulated to be highly cooperative as revealed 
in the letters that were submitted recently to important world personalities 
including Vladimir Putin of Russia. 
I hope that such write-ups will be diffused because they may serve as a source 
of encouragement for others to do something similar in due time. Keep up the 
good work, which is so fully beneficial to all humanity. 
Charles Mercieca

From: gha-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gha-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of 
Leo Semashko
Sent: Tuesday, August 27, 2013 10:49 AM
To: "Justo Bolekia Boleká"
Cc: gha@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gha] Re: Ciencia y Paz Global: propuesta de la GHA para el G20

Dear Justo, 

Thank you very much for your letter to President Putin (in attachment), which 
you sent in the address of Russian Presidency on the G20 Summit to here: 

Your letter is very important and is the great contribution to global peace and 
its science.

I only add to your signature: Salamanca, Spain. Do you agree with it? Your 
letter I was happy to publish here: 

With love, best harmony wishes,


Dr Leo Semashko:
State  Councillor  of  St.  Petersburg,
Philosopher, Sociologist and Peacemaker from Harmony;
Director:  Tetrasociology Public Institute, Russia;
Founding President, Global Harmony Association (GHA);
Director, GHA Website "Peace from Harmony": www.peacefromharmony.org
Global Peace Science from Harmony: www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=582;
World Interfaith Harmony Project on the ABC of Harmony Base:
GHA Program Book, The ABC of Harmony for World Peace:
GHA Peace Video: http://youtu.be/hbxY5lREOeA;
My Web page: www.peacefromharmony.org/?cat=en_c&key=253;
Address: 7/4-42 Ho-Shi-Min Street, St. Petersburg 194356, Russia
Phone: 7 (812) 597-65-71; Skype: leo.semahko
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/leo.semashko?ref=tn_tnmn

----- Original Message -----
  From: "Justo Bolekia Boleká", bolekiaj@xxxxxxx
  To: leo.semashko@xxxxxxxxx
  Sent: 27 августа 2013 г., 13:42:27
  Subject: Ciencia y Paz Global: propuesta de la GHA para el G20

Dear President Putin,

See attached the Global Harmony Association proposal letter to the G20
leaders. I hope you will take it into account and submit it to the world
With peace from harmony,

Dr. Dr. Justo Bolekia Boleka
Professor of French Studies at the Universty of Salamanca (www.usal.es)
Philologist, Poet and Writer (www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Justo_Bolekia_Boleka)
Diasporan Correspodant of Splendors of Dawn (www.splendorsofdawnpf.org)
Visiting Scholar at the University of Ghana (www.ug.edu.gh)
Vice-President and Chief Executive Officer of GHA-Africa
Advisor of EGJustice (www.egjustice.org/our-team)

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