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Universality of Liberation Theology: One is Equal to All and All are Equal to One Dr. Saied Reza Ameli Presented in IHRC

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Title: Universality of Liberation Theology: One is Equal to All and All are Equal to One Dr. Saied Reza Ameli Presented in IHRC


1
Universality of Liberation Theology One is Equal
to All and All are Equal to One Dr. Saied Reza
Ameli Presented in IHRCs conference on
Towards a New Liberation Theology Reflections
on Palestine 12th June 2005
2
Why Liberation Theology?
  • Religion can not be neutral even if it is
    secular?!
  • Religion exists to save people from any
    deprivation and life disturbance.
  • Religion has to solve individual as well as
    social problems
  • It should by dynamic, otherwise it will die
  • Science can not be neutral even if it is secular
    science is alive if it reduces the pain

3
Theology and Isolation
  • Theology gradually became a topic of debate
    amongst clerics, abstract from ordinary life
    because of two isolations
  • Isolation of theology from public life
  • Isolation of people from social products of
    religion.
  • These two isolations turned religion into a
    historical context which turned out to be museum
    types of ideas.

4
End of All Past Production
  • While in the age of globalization, the trend for
    endness became archetype for presentation of
    all new ideas, it seems society needs to return
    to the human origin to purify all impurities have
    been dominated the life.
  • One such return is a return to the involvement of
    religion in politics. Liberation theology was
    considered as a turning point for
    repoliticization of religion and an action for
    desecularization of politics (Levine, 1990229).

5
Concept of Liberation Theology
  • Liberation theology is an attempt for liberating
    people of the world from poverty and oppression.

6
Sociology of Liberation
  • On the other hand the sociology of Liberation is
    also a consciousness raising concept among the
    oppressed society.
  • It is perhaps more than merely consciousness
    raising, which has moved the sociology of
    liberation to an activist type of work rather
    than an academic discipline of thought.
  • That activity is not on behalf of the oppressed,
    but it is achieved by learning to see the world
    from their perspective and joining with them.
  • Liberation sociology means joining the
    Palestinian homeless and the Palestinians who
    have lost their children, fathers and mothers, so
    as to understand what homelessness in your own
    home means.

7
Liberation Theology and Latin America
  • In the academic and activist literature
    Liberation Theology introduced as a Christian
    Leftist Movement which emerged in Latin American.
  • Since emergence of liberation theology, it has
    become a unique and permanent political movement
    throughout Latin America from Mexico to Chile,
    from Nicaragua to Brazil, this movement has been
    politically effective in merging together
    traditional, religious values with a commitment
    to social activism on behalf of the poor and
    Oppressed (Pottenger, 1989).

8
Not only in Latin America
  • For Jim Tuck1 (2005) Liberation theology didn't
    begin with the Berrigan brothers or Bishop Ruiz,
    but it goes back to l5th and l6th centuries. A
    remarkable man Las Casas devoted the greater part
    of his 92 years on earth to ameliorating the
    non-Caucasian people who lived in the vast
    Spanish empire.
  • In reality liberation theology emerged by divine
    prophet such as Abraham, Moses and Jesus and
    Finally Mohammad.
  • The were all fathers to the poor and they came to
    support the oppressed.

9
Why Liberation Theology Emerged?
  • For Harvey Cox (2005) Liberation theology was
    largely a response to the three coexistent
    social, religious and philosophical change in
    Latin America.
  • First, worsening social and economic conditions
    for the majority of people in Latin America in
    the 1950s created a desire and expectations for
    change.

10
Why Liberation Theology Emerged?
  • Secondly, the structural causes of poverty were
    addressed in Latin American dependency theory,
    and class-based inequities were identified in
    Marxist critiques of capitalist systems. By the
    late 1950s a revolutionary climate was apparent
    in the region, exemplified by the Cuban
    Revolution of 1959.
  • The Second Vatican Council (1962-1965) was the
    third Major reason. Pope John XXIII opened the
    council by expressing the hope that the Catholic
    Church might become once againthe church of the
    poor.

11
Two Important Nostalgias
  • Liberation theology is a response towards two
    important local and global nostalgias
  • The first and the most important one is nostalgia
    for justice.
  • The second one is nostalgia of metaphysical
    values.

12
How would Liberation Theology work Universally
and be Effective for Palestine
  • liberation theology requires three major elements
    to work as a Universal Solution
  • Return to God
  • Selflessness
  • Centrality of Justice

13
1. Return to God
  • We are all far from God whether we are Muslims,
    Christians or Jews
  • If we are not fair to God, we can not be fair to
    ourselves and we cannot be fair to others.
  • To liberate Palestinians, one needs to see them
    as creatures of the same God and one needs to see
    them as members of their own community.
  • This requires Liberating other followers of faith
    and force the International Community to
    liberate God from any attachment to Chosen
    Community.
  • The only Chosen People are the oppressed and the
    poor and everyone are responsible to them.

14
Return to God and righteous act
  • This will effect our practices on the earth about
    ourselves and others So whoever expects to
    encounter his Lord, let him act righteously, and
    not associate anyone with the worship of his Lord
    (Surat Al-Kahf, Verses, 110).

15
Universality of Gods Perception
  • God has fragmented to many Gods Muslims, Jews
    and Christians and other religions divided God
    metaphorically to variety of God community
    which means my God is different to your God.
  • This does indeed effect consciously and
    unconsciously our relationship with creatures of
    God.
  • It effects our sympathy and commitment to the
    pain of people.
  • Whether or not they are members of our
    Community of God?

16
Divinity and Mankind
  • According to all divine messages there is no
    differences between people except by their level
    of closeness to God
  • O mankind! Indeed We created you from a male and
    female, and made you nations and tribes that you
    may identify with one another. Indeed the noblest
    of you in the sight of Allah is the most God
    weary amongst you. Indeed Allah is all-knowing,
    all-aware (Surat Al-Hujarat, versus 13)1.
  • 1 ?? ????????? ??? ??????? ?? ??? ? ???? ?
    ??????? ????? ? ????? ????????? ?? ?????? ???????
    ??????? ?? ???? ???? ???? (???????? ??? 13)

17
2. Selflessness and caring
  • Selflessness, minimization of personal desires
    and dogmatic attachments to nationality,
    ethnicity and even religion are major
    requirements for caring for oppressed and poor
    people.
  • This needs avoiding all things which can be
    considered as selfishness.
  • Self here is not only a person, but it can
    cover all collective centralities such as
    Eurocentrism, Americocentrism and Zionism, which
    cause demolishing and destruction of others for
    the price of supporting the self.

18
Selflessness
  • Selflessness is a divine and mystical soul of all
    divine religions which brings Gods spirit to all
    aspects of life. Consequently, such ambition
    motivates ones caring tendencies, and even the
    sacrificing of life for others, rather than
    dominating, marginalizing, torturing and
    executing others.
  • Here is where the Palestinian problem becomes a
    global issue for all human beings who care about
    others, here is the position at which all
    become equal to one and one becomes equal to
    all here is the position at which one can
    observe unity within diversity and diversity
    within unity.

19
3. Centrality of Justice
  • Decentralization of ethnicity and centralization
    of Justice for all human beings is another major
    element of the Universality of Liberation
    Theology. Here is the position which advocates
    sociological approach to the liberation of the
    Palestinian people.

20
The Chosen Society is the Oppressed Society
  • Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) said Shall I let you
    know about the kings of the Heaven? Every
    powerless deprived1.
  • 1 ??? ???? ???? ??? ???? ???? ? ??? ???
    ?????? ?? ???? ??? ?????? ?? ???? ??????
    (?????????? 5943).

21
Future of the World
  • In Islam the future is in the hands of those whom
    kept the powerless deprived. It is articulated
    that And We desired to show favour to those who
    were deprived in the land, and to make them
    Imams, and to make them the inheritors1.
  • 1 ? ???? ?? ??? ??? ????? ???????? ?? ????? ?
    ?????? ???? ? ?????? ???????? (???? ?????? 5).

22
Injustice and Corruption of the World
  • Imam Ali said Injustice is the mother of all
    sins1.
  • Imam Ali said Injustice is destructive force2
  • Imam Ali said Oppressing the poor is worst
    injustice3.
  • 1 ??? ??? ???? ?????? ????? ???? ???????
    (????????? 804)
  • 2 ??? ??? ???? ?????? ????? ????? (?????????
    6)
  • 3 ??? ??? ???? ?????? ??? ?????? ???? ?????
    (??? ???????? ?????? 31)

23
UN Statistic
  • Palestinian refugees (about 5 million) represent
    approximately 18 of the total number of refugees
    in the world.

24
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25
Food Insecurity in Palestine
  • Food security in the occupied Palestinian
    territory. Levels of food insecurity in the
    occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) are high.
  • Over a million Palestinians are food-insecure,
    and another 975,000 are at risk of becoming so.
  • This food insecurity is caused primarily by
    Israels closure policy and movement
    restrictions, which have resulted in massive
    increases in unemployment and underemployment (up
    to 30 in the West Bank and 40 in the Gaza
    Strip). (Source Humanitarian Practice Network)

26
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27
Conclusion Word
  • According to Universal Liberation Theology, the
    issue of Palestine can not come to any positive
    conclusion unless world society can globally move
    to change the oppressive trend of the world.

28
Caring about Others
  • This trend will not come to any end unless world
    society can end selfishness by returning to the
    God and have great ambition to stand for justice
    not only because of justice but because this is
    the order of God
  • God determinate Justice in Returning to God and
    only God.

29
Alarm and Hope
  • Dont forget that injustice is turning around,
    today it might be far from Us, but tomorrow it
    will be on Our doorstep,
  • Today Palestine, Tomorrow your home.
  • I am optimistic to the world, because I can see
    the dissident culture is expanding. Dissident to
    all injustice to all immoral behavior.
    Lets wish for a day which there is no
    oppression, there is no poverty, and there is
    nothing but peace, trust and sympathy.
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