Seekers of peace and stability ceaselessly work for ending all causes of conflicts and wars so that peoples all over the world can live, coexist, and prosper. The religious leaders shoulder greater responsibility in this regard as a great deal of instability and devastation, occurring in the present time, are attributed to religions as many of those who commit the barbaric and brutal crimes claim to be acting in the name of religions. Here comes the role of the religious leaders to counter such groups and clarify the true essence of religions.
In this context, two great international religious leaders have spent huge efforts during the last decade. The Grand Imam of al-Azhar, prof. Ahmad al-Tayeb and his Holiness, Pope Francis, the Pontiff of the Catholic Church, play a crucial role in promoting peaceful coexistence among followers of different religions. To this end, they held various meetings and conferences, developed different initiatives and finally signed the ‘Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together’.
As stated in the introduction of the Document, this idea came out as an outcome of “fraternal and open discussions, and from the meeting that expressed profound hope in a bright future for all human beings.” Accordingly, it was only through dialogue and cooperation that this significant document could be drafted and this proves that nothing at all can be realized in the human pursuit for promoting of peace worldwide except through rapprochement and dialogue among followers of all religions. Religious leaders and followers of religions should mobilize their powers to save the whole humanity from the prevalence of materialism and spread of havoc and destruction.
To initiate a dialogue means that we shall reach a mutual understanding, as it is only through exchange of views and opinions that people get to know each other and derive the motives and causes of certain stances or steps taken by the other party. In this way, we can all come to a common ground which helps us build a platform for joint action for the prosperity of all humankind. Therefore, we find that the Document of Human Fraternity highlights dialogue and understanding as key elements for establishing peaceful coexistence and alleviating the severity of many community and universal problems of this world. It states, “Dialogue, understanding and the widespread promotion of a culture of tolerance, acceptance of others and of living together peacefully would contribute significantly to reducing many economic, social, political and environmental problems that weigh so heavily on a large part of humanity”.