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Appraising the Nigerian Problem Through Education and Religious Dialogue

A Cognitive Approach

Series:

Rowland Onyenali

The book tries to trace the origin of today’s Nigeria. The foundation that produced it was based on faulty principles, which came about due to the fact that both the imperial Lords and the indigenous founding fathers had no clear vision of the nature the new nation should take. The fact that many tribes, tongues and beliefs were unsystematically coerced to form this unwilling alliance added much strain to the feeble chains of unity. Every effort made to address this situation has failed so far. The author shows failures in the political, economic and religious arena while arguing that the development of the mental faculties of the Nigerian youth is the only viable option towards success. This development can only come about through comprehensive education, not based on the acquisition of paper qualifications but on the development of the entire person as an entity.

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Section III: Religious Dialogue in Nigeria

Extract

119 Chapter Five Foundations of Religious Dialogue in Christianity and Islam 5.1 Shared Beliefs One does not need to look far to see how Christianity and Islam share common traits. First, Christianity and Islam proclaim belief in a one supreme God, creator of the universe. In this, the two religions share the same trait of monotheism.1 The apostolic declaration on the relation of the Catholic Church to non-Christian religions, Nostra Aetate, makes the following remarks about Islam: “The Church regards with esteem also the Moslems. They adore the one God, living and subsisting in Himself, merciful and all-powerful, the Creator of heaven and earth, who has spoken to men; they take pains to submit wholeheartedly to even His inscrutable decrees, just as Abraham, with whom the faith of Islam takes great pleasure in linking itself, submitted to God. Though they do not acknowledge Jesus as God, they revere Him as a prophet. They also honor Mary, His virgin mother; at times they even call on her with devotion. In addition, they await the Day of Judgment when God will render their deserts to all those who have been raised up from the dead. Finally, they value the moral life and worship God especially through prayer, almsgiving and fasting.”2 This submission shows the esteem state the Catholic Church perceives Islam. It also shows the elements that link the two religions. Not only do Christianity and Islam share the same monotheistic view of the divine, they also agree on a num-...

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