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Ilorin Journal of Religious Studies

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Christian-Muslim relations in Ghana: A model for world dialogue and peace

M Abdul-Hamid

Abstract


The relations between Christians and Muslims has been a
shaky one for centuries. Islam and Christianity are locked
up in competing truth claims that has often led its adherents to resort to force to drive home the truth of their claims. In all the continents of the world, wars have been fought between the adherents of these traditions, which curiously are both descended from Abraham. Indeed that is why they are called the Abrahamic faiths. The events of September 11 2001in the United States have further deepened the suspicion between adherents of these two faiths. In the West African country of Nigeria, clashes between Christians and Muslims have become a yearly ritual. Conferences are organised all year round in every
part of the world in the name of Muslim-Christian dialogue all in an effort to ensure lasting peace between these faiths. These conferences have hardly yielded their desired results. In Ghana however, Christians and Muslims have lived in absolute peace since the introduction of Christianity and Islam in the fifteenth century. This paper explores Christian-Muslim relations in Ghana and specifically examines why Muslims and Christians have lived in peace for centuries now. The paper concludes that it is the
“dialogue of life” that will ensure peace between these two faiths rather than conference meetings and half-hearted handshakes. There are great tensions between and within
nations. Religion has often exacerbated these conflicts and
tensions rather than ameliorate them. Christians and Muslims constitute nearly half of the population of the world. Therefore whether or not the people of these faiths live together in peace and harmony has serious implications for world peace. In most parts of the world, Muslims and Christians have been at each other’s throat. In the West African nation of Nigeria for example, conflict between Christians and Muslims has become a yearly ritual with its attendant loss of lives and property.



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