INTER-RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE: the Nigerian experience (by M.A.Bidmos)


It is no news that religion has always been a subject of controversy. Over the years, different people have explored the nature, forms and popularity of religion. Intently, some regard the extent of the damages incurred in the name of religion, and concluded that religion has not only failed in its purpose to save humanity, but also succeeded in aggravating the problem. Some, like many brilliant scientists, believed that religion is a bane; and should be discouraged for the advancement of science. Some argued in favour of their supposed faiths, while some just maintained a neutral standpoint. Others, including M.A. Bidmos, strongly believed that religion is not the problem. That religion has only been instrumentalized to sort out tribal and political differences. For Bidmos, the only way to save religion- and at the same time achieve a peaceful coexistence among adherents of different faiths- is to carry out inter-religious dialogue. Hence, the true nature of inter-religious dialogue, and how it can be harnessed to bring about the desired change is at the centre of his book, INTER-RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE: the Nigerian experience.

To support his claim, M.A. Bidmos gave detailed explanations of the case for inter-religious dialogue in Nigeria, the factors responsible for the unhealthy relationship between Muslims and Christians in the country, the evidences for this dialogue as obtained from the Qur’an and Bible, practical demonstrations of its workability, and most importantly, the modus operandi to guarantee its effectiveness. 

Being a learned Muslim, he might have succeeded in making Islam more appealing, by shedding light on the befuddled notions surrounding the nature of his religion. However, his approach was harmless and unprejudiced, as he also referenced the bible in appropriate places. For every peace-loving individual, there is a lot to be learned here.

INTER-RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE: the Nigerian experience provides an outlook for the religious climate in Nigeria, the extent of the religious discrepancies, and the activities fueling the rivalry. It also offers a practical solution to this dilemma, which has- in countless ways- hindered the development of the nation. For these reasons, I rate it 5 out of 5. You may give it your ratings in the comments section below.

PS I could not get the online version of the book (not even a paid one). So, I created a PDF myself. I hope you read it.

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