I never believed in dialogue as a solution, especially when the parties using it as a tool to justify their own cultures and values.
When divergences are focused on the way of life, convergences are totally unfeasible. Therefore dialogue is absolutely not a solution, but merely a new method for the appeasement.
Our culture is so permeated by this process of entering into a dialogue with the mental precondition that each side must compromise on every point of difference, that all such debates, instead of reaching the truth and split separating the false from true, become vehicle that produce only crystallized compromises.
More than dialogue, which is usually a one-to-one solution, I prefer re-establishing the correct semantic process by using the method of colloquy.
“Colloquy” is generally defined as a formal conversation or discussion following certain rules. For example, in a trial a lawyer’s conversation with the judge is a colloquy. Colloquy is a faculty, which can enrich human discourse, as well as providing a controlled discussion that will maintain distinct boundaries for coming to an agreement. Thus each party will come to the maximum result possible.
While dialogue is focused on a commercial perspective, colloquy is more related to the deep and inner idea that each party will become that there are no common points to share. By pre-defining the rules of the conversation, such as “The West will not give up their Christian heritage”…and, perhaps… “It is the duty of every Muslim to expand Islam”, each party will realize the extent of their differences and will be prevented from coming to some bitter compromise that neither side can nor will maintain. To initiate a colloquy, first each party must state clearly and without belligerence what possible results of their future conversation that they cannot support. From these positions, it may be possible to work within such stated boundaries, and to achieve a viable solution.
In a certain sense a dialogue can mislead each party by surrounding all statements with a mask of soothing and misleading words, which makes a viable solution to their differences nearly impossible to find. According to this feature we may define dialogue also as the method, which makes positions foggy and undefined.
The indeterminateness of entering into discussions without defining the absolute boundaries is the end of the ability of mankind to deeply understand its own identity, value, binding rule.
That is the effect of the Relativism (the philosophical doctrine that states that all criteria of judgment are relative to the individuals and situations involved), which has gradually enveloped societies and organizations.
Everyone is talking about dialogue because it is more comfortable and peaceable to say words that are soothing and only partly true. It is difficult to stand and defend basic principles. It’s a kind of way of seeking a short-term materialistic peace, while letting a pernicious evil destroy our thinking and basic beliefs.
Man’s creative self-realization comes when there is clarity and does not allow compromises in their domains.
In this way, the necessarily adversarial relationship between good and evil, truth and falsehood, is stated, in the full universal divine revelation, which cannot be submitted up to any dialogue.
Debates are only setting up conditions for concessions.
The truth is a clarification of responsibility and action against those liable to jeopardize our fundamental principles.
That is why we should not find any convergence with Islam, which may be understood as poor faith.
© Eraldo da Pistoia