Editorial Foreword

This journal, International Journal of Philosophy and Public Affairs, is five years old this year, having appeared for the first time in 2013. Incidentally on the 5th anniversary of its existence, it is presenting a special volume on “violence-conflict and justice-peace matters” because two-third of
the articles in this volume deal with the subject matter from social, political, ecclesiastical and biblical perspectives.

To open the discussion on this topical subject is Prof. Okere’s paper titled: “Egbe bere Ugo bere”: An African concept of Justice and Peace.” Okere takes up a famous aphorism in Igbo philosophy and praxis, and tries to build it into a universal model. He does so by showing that the dominant Western notion of peace is intricately tied to violence. For him, the said violence is evident in Western ethics, philosophy, colonial conquest of Africa, etc. Hence, he rejects the Western concept and praxis, but finds solace in the Igbo alternative concept which he proposes for the Nigerian State, a state born through violence by Britain and has ever been sustained by the same, thus making peace to elude her.

But Dr. Anthony Ajah thinks that engaging Okere in an “Interpretative Dialogue” on some of his views would be a best way to give a balance to his (Okere’s) presentation. For Ajah, Okere’s paper has a possible credit of a ‘reasoned refutation’ of the Western concept of a just war theory, but not what he (Okere) intended to do in the article. Ajah thinks that “Okere deviated from the project of reason, and got engaged with crafting and defending the non-existent. Hence, he got involved in sweeping presentations of non-truths about the West and the Igbo”.

In furtherance of our multi-faceted view on violence, three specialized authors: Rowland Onyenali, Cletus Obasi and Philip Igbo take up the discussion to the religious plane, inquiring into the possibility of God’s involvement in the whole saga in what they captioned: “The Warrior God: An Examination of the Violent Parabolic Teachings of Jesus and their Implications for Nigeria”. Their investigations reveal that the sacred texts “call for non-violence, tolerance and peace.”, and those texts “invite us to leave the judgment of the wicked and violent person into God’s hand” even as the “the parables condemn the perpetration of violence in the name of God.”

Contributing to the discourse, Dr. Innocent Enweh, in his paper on “Violence and Social Justice”, observes that “violence is a feature of man’s life and that social justice is the situation that reduces the occurrence of violence to the barest minimum”. He argues that any action to combat violence would require combating injustice, noting that as humans, it is “our common responsibility to strive for a more just and peaceful world by working for the eradication of
violence through positive personal behavioural modification”.

Taking a break from the discussions on violence, Dr. Jerry Obi-Okogbuo leads us to another but related discussion on an aspect of scientific-technological improvement of nature. His “In Defence of Genetic Engineering from the Perspective of Naturalistic Fallacy Argument” argues that there is a certain fallacy in thinking that nature is fixedly stable such that the practice of genetic engineering violates this stability. He summarizes the core argument of critics of genetic engineering thus: “…all forms of genetic engineering are unnatural in that they go against and interfere with nature, particularly in the crossing of natural species boundaries”. But he underlines the fact that nature continuously modifies itself in various ways in the course of time.

Since nobody speaks from nowhere, and since many of the views expressed by authors in the present volume are grounded on their basic socio-political, scientific and religious convictions, it becomes worthwhile to examine the methodology of social or scientific analysis that bring about convictions, and this time, as it pertains to biblical interpretation. Dr. Luke Ijezie explores those analyses in his contribution: “Use of Social Scientific Analysis in Biblical Interpretation.”

In summary, one can say that the articles in this volume oscillate between two major poles: ‘what one has experienced through learning or experience’ and ‘what is proposed to one as the norm or the ideal.’ Granted the two poles, it would be fitting to conclude the series of articles in the present
volume with Charles Okoro’s “Distinction in Character and Learning: A Philosophical Appraisal of the Nexus between Intellectual Formation and Moral Formation”. He argues that “there is an obvious correlation between learning and character, that is, intellectual and moral formation. Both are undoubtedly critical to integral and balanced personality development.” In other words, to be a balanced human person requires the convinced acquisition of these two traits or natures.

In our Discussion-forum, two experts on Moral Philosophy, Dr. Peter Osuji and Dr. Aloysius Obiwulu respond to Dr. Jerry’s ‘defense of Genetic Engineering’. Their critical comments are highly appreciated in the same way that one appreciates the author’s disposition to respond to his critics.


USA Offices

  • Ralphael Chijioke Njoku
  • Idaho State University, USA.

  • Prof. Zephyrinus Okonkwo
  • Albany State University Georgia, USA

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  • Dr. Matthew I. Nwoko
  • Kolpingstrasse 1B.

  • 28195 Bremen, Germany.
  • matthew.nwoko@gmx.de

Journal Secretariat

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