Abstract. The paper presents an analytical review of the conference held in the All-Russian State Library for Foreign Literature in December 2015. The participants of the conference – Orientalists, specialists in religion studies, historians, philosophers, theologians – considered problems of coexistence between the Western and the Eastern civilization, religious dynamics of different regions, spiritual life of a modern man and his religious experience in current conditions of inter-religious conflicts aggravation, escalation of violence, and dangers of aggressive ideology forms. Of special interest were historical preconditions for the present-day global religious situation as well as changes in the very content of modern religious conceptions and practices. A particular subject of interest for the participants were also religious problems in present-day Russia and India. Today, the religious sphere as a whole has to experience the pressure of three conflicting tendencies: the pressure of contemporary socio-economic, technological and information imperatives; the counter-pressure of traditional local psychological and socio-cultural patterns; the immanent pressure of “big” religious traditions, with their specific and unavoidable theological and philosophical implications. This triple conflict is experienced presently by Oriental religions (Hinduism, Islam, etc.) as well as by Christianity. At the same time, this triple challenge seems to be a precondition for the world-wide development and expansion of Neo-Protestant beliefs and denominations. A thorough study of the world religions heritage, the experience of European values (humanism, rationalism) is intrinsically important for critical analysis of contemporary, often dramatic events in our world.
Keywords: clash of civilizations, world religions, global studies, inter-faith dialogue, religious dynamics, West and East
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