|previous article in this issue||next article in this issue|
Document Details :
Title: All Europeans are Equal... but aren't Some Less European than Others?
Subtitle: Reflections on Europe and Orthodox Christianity
Author(s): VAN DER ZWEERDE, Evert
Journal: Journal of Eastern Christian Studies
Volume: 57 Issue: 3-4 Date: 2005
This paper addresses the relation between the Orthodox-Christian tradition and European integration. Orthodoxy is the predominant religion in a number of European countries within, on the threshold of, and bordering on the European Union. First, the idea of a relatively monolithic “World of Orthodoxy” is addressed in a critical discussion of the Huntingtonian paradigm of clashing civilizations. Secondly, the paper points out that European integration as a project is open and without intrinsic limit. A discussion of the situation with respect to human rights, particularly freedom of religion, in predominantly Orthodox countries leads up to a key question: who decides about what does and what does not belong to “Europe”? Against this background, the difficulties and differences in dealing with religion in a post-Soviet world are addressed. This amounts to the conclusion that Orthodoxy presents Europe both with hindrances, challenges, and potential contributions.