Religion as a Source of Peace and Violence
Peace Review: A Journal of Social Justice
Fleeing persecution in 615, the disciples and followers of Prophet Muhammad found refuge in Africa. In this “First Hijrah,” or migration, they had escaped Mecca and sought safety in Aksum (now northern Ethiopia and Eritrea), the land of an African Christian king. It was a crucial moment in the development of Islam. Africa, a place of many religions, was seen, rightly, as a safe haven.
Like Islam, Christianity had faced opposition and persecution in its early years. The practitioners of both religions knew firsthand what it meant to suffer violence from those who disagreed. How can it be that religions born of persecution are now themselves used for extreme violence? And why, specifically, in Africa today? How can Africans prevent and fight against extremism and what can we all learn from this experience?
Margee Ensign, and Jean-Pierre Karegeye, "Religion as a Source of Peace and Violence," in "Symposium: Religion in War and Peace in Africa," ed. Margee Ensign and Jean-Pierre Karegeye, special issue, Peace Review: A Journal of Social Justice 30, no. 4 (2018): 425-428 (Article published online March 27, 2019). https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10402659.2018.1553533