The Ninth General Conference:Islam And The West Past - Present - Future
On the grounds of the precepts of our great religion Islam, and all the heavenly missions which put Man before his huge responsibility of the construction of earth, its protection again corruption, and the empowerment of right, justice, good and love on earth; and on the grounds of our deep awareness of the risks of the present where belief in values is shaken, and where power dominated over the right, and the world is divided into a North that possesses science, abundance and power, and a South that suffers ignorance, poverty and backwardness. The rule of money and the feverish conflict in the economic domain have become the rule of life, and this deprived Man of his serenity and security.
Aware of the future perils of the relationship between Islam and the West, and between the North and South if the present status continued along that way, and wishing to guide the future by the lessons of the past and the realities of the present, and out of the keenness to set up a rational constructive cooperation for the interest of the whole world, came Egypt's call- which was adopted by The Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs- for this Ninth Conference to tackle this relationship under the title of "ISLAM AND THE WEST- PAST- PRESENT- FUTURE.
The world responded promptly to this call as about eighty countries and organizations from the east and the west sent their representatives to attend this conference.
This response was a significant expression of the vigilant awareness of the whole world of the dangers of the present, and the worry about the future. It enhanced our deep belief in the validity of this call which actually came as an expression of a human and international wish.
It goes without saying that convening this Conference under the title of "ISLAM AND THE WEST" does not mean a space division between the east and the west, or a religious division between Islam and Christianity. As a matter of fact it meant to put the cultural contribution of both Islam and the West in the face of their joint responsibility to protect man and his frailty, and to help him guide his march while he is heading towards the twenty-first century which we hope to be a century of right, justice, cooperation, and upholding Man's dignity.
The statement of President Hosni Moubarak in the inaugural session of the Conference, and which was considered by participants as one of the most important documents, was a powerful call to exert all efforts to open the gates for joint cooperation between Islam and the West with the aim of establishing and consolidating the noble human values approved by all heavenly missions within the framework of distinction and variety among the individuals and peoples; each people has its own civilization, culture and beliefs. This is the instinctive privacy God preordained when He created Man and categorizing them into peoples and tribes, each has its own colour and its own privacy. It is this distinction which leads to cooperation. God has given each his assignment in the contribution and enrichment of human civilization.
The relationship between Islam and the West underwent times of tide and ebb, war and peace, as it was the case in several countries of the world. However, these junctions have never blocked the cultural and civilizational communication between Muslims and the West.
When Muslims began to build their civilization, they did not hesitate to translate what they found useful in the sciences and cultures of other civilizations including the ancient Greek civilization. They benefited from these civilizations, developed and added to them.
On the other side, when Europe wanted to get out of the darkness of the Middle Ages, it set its eyes on the sciences of Muslims and made use of them. These sciences were a foundation of the modern European renaissance. When Egypt called for this Conference, "ISLAM AND THE WEST, PAST- PRESENT- FUTURE", there was the precaution that the discussion of this subject should invoke nothing from the past except what reflects positively on the present and future, i.e. to invoke the lessons without pausing long over the snags of the past.
Concluding Cairo Declaration on this historic Conference, we appeal to both the West and the Islamic world to:
- Cooperate collectively for the protection of the noble values established by heavenly missions.
- Work relentlessly and with all their might for the rejection of all hegemony endeavours sought by some major powers in our age, and which aim at negating the privacy and constituents of other peoples.
- Work for the empowerment of Allah's World in God's Kingdom so as humanity is ushered into the twenty-first century guided by God's support.
The participants expressed their gratitude and appreciation of Egypt's great cultural role in exploring and sensing the potential dangers of the future, and of its constant initiative of behoving the thinkers of Islam and the West to undertake their obligations.
Hence, in expression of these feelings, the participants decided to send a cable of thanks to H.E President Muhammad Hosni Moubarak, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Sponsor of this Conference, expressing their profound gratitude for Egypt, Government and people, under the prudent leadership of President Moubarak, praying God to keep Egypt the honest guard of the values of the right, justice and peace, and to pursue its contribution for the service of the cause of humanity and Man's welfare.