CONFERENCE: “Inter-Ethnic Reconciliation, Religious Tolerance and Human Security in the Balkans” (Belgrade, City Hall, 24-25 October, 2014)
If we, members present at this debate, are at all serious, then we must face the fact in which each debate on religious tolerance, inter-ethnic co-existence, reconciliation and human security should be indisputably pivoted around a profound, serious, intelligent, individual and collective observation of the very roots of human conflicts.
The seriousness of these topics should not be faced through localistic and rhetorical analyzes, regardless of their respectable complexities, neither through mere political actions limited to the establishment of new separative regulations, paradoxically aimed to bring about geopolitical and geo-religious “peace”.
The atrocious events which took place in the recent conflictual history of the former Yugoslavia should be observed as a collective European and Global keystone so to inquire, as human beings first of all, therefore collectively, intelligently, together, and not as members of this or that certain pattern of identification, whether religious, ethic, cultural, traditional or sociological.
Historically, sociologically, psychologically and even ethically, it’s indisputable that all possible inquiries aimed to reduce, to solve, to soothe and prevent conflicts among belief systems and therefore men, are and can only be partially useful or merely vain unless the issue of belief is not entirely understood.
“Pacem in terris” (“peace on Earth”) has been preached by all religions for thousands of years: it has been the motto of christianity, the mantra of the hindu religiosity and the buddhists people, …”Islam” means peace…
But all along these thousands of years man has lived in conflict; and where are we now?
This is fact, and this debate must see this fact for what it is.
Therefore this debate and this speech are inexorably tied up with the immensely relevant question which is: Why? And this question, this “why?”, is a question that cannot be wholly faced as long as the mind, (my mind, your mind, our minds, their minds), cannot or does not want to think out of the psycho-social field of the belief system that such mind has adopted and cultivated..
This is fact, reality, actuality.. and we assume that an intelligent debate inherent in the topics presented in this conference can only reach a reasonable point if faced from this impartial and serious point of view.. We are not here talking about what we should or shouldn’t do to bring about “pacem in terris”; we are here, all together, as human beings, wondering and interrogating ourselves about:
why a man kills another man in the name of god?
Why men kill men in the name of “peace”?
We assume that this is, (and only this can be), the only serious “starting point of analysis” necessary to activate a serious discussion, considering the issues of this debate, then actions perhaps, aimed to direct ourselves, as human beings, as human minds, together and not divided by glorified tribalisms, toward a future of real peace and intelligence..
We should think about these things..
–Diego Kricek Fontanive