Mankind has searched for God through countless means, places and sources. This search has been both internal and external – internal in meditations, prayers and various ascetic practices; external in temples, mosques, mountains, churches, in spiritual texts or simply in following a more spiritually enlightened leader.
Of all mankind’s religions, from the beginning of time till today, two major religions have stood out – both in followership and in expressions of faith and doctrinal beliefs. Yet, rather than value the differences and contemplate on the similarities, adherents of Islam and Christianity have tended to live in fear of the other, even feeling threatened by the other’s faith. It is needless to recount the unfortunate outcomes thereof. The hate and suspicion that exist between Christianity and Islam would be minimized if adherents of both faiths look more intently at those places where their faiths cross.
There are questions that people of all faiths ask. Questions such as why do we grow old and die? What happens when we die? Why do good people suffer, yet bad people tend to live long? Who are we, beyond body and mind? The answers to these questions are stronger than the religious beliefs that divide us. Beliepedia, developed at American University of Nigeria, seeks to provide a shared space for Muslims and Christians to grapple with these crosscutting yet dissonant questions. Though some of the questions lean towards the boundaries of the philosophical, both religions do provide interesting insights that can help illuminate the very nature of our existence and the most common questions that are at the very core of our common search for God, for meaning and for our place in the universe. Irrespective of the religion they represent, the answers can help satisfy our common curiosities and thirsts for understanding.
Beliepedia does not pretend to have all the answers or even all the questions. That is why it is open to everyone. It is a gift to our world so that everyone, irrespective of location or faith can comment, register to be an author and help provide questions and answers.
Beliepedia is part of #IAmABeliever Project of students of Public Diplomacy and Strategic Media Intervention (CMD 412) at American University of Nigeria in response to a global university P2P Challenge Extremism project.
Follow this link for our full concept report iamabeliever-campaign-concept-note and click here for our December 2016 campaign submission