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Horasis Extraordinary Meeting: Secure identity leads to openness

Participants to the Horasis Extraordinary meeting

On 18 March 2021, Horasis hosted its second full-scale Horasis Extraordinary Meeting. The meeting brought together 700 of its most senior members, to discuss and address the breakdown in social cohesion and the promotion of inclusivity and gender equality. President and Founder, Christoph Stückelberger participated in the panel discussion entitled ‘Defeating Populism and other Extremes' alongside Farah Pandith and Martina Fuchs. Most nations have seen a rise in inwards-looking populism, nationalism and rampant racism expressed by their respective political right and left extremes. The panelists discussed potential solutions to achieve balance and togetherness.

Farah Pandith asked "Why have ideologies of us vs them been able to flourish?' She noted that whilst these ideologies have existed in society for a long time, social media platforms have exacerbated such beliefs, especially throughout the pandemic. Ideologies related to extremism have no rules and no order, and she noted that what we witness now, is the manifestation of dangerous and harmful ideology. Christoph Stückelberger agreed that COVID-19 did not cause more populism, fundamentalism or extremism, but rather accelerated what existed already through a virtual bubble. However, he also made a point to note the positive use of social media, the growth in counter movements and in solidarity to defeat populism.

Christoph Stückelberger described extremism as a bitter fruit, composed of our lack of orientation, of inner values and of community. He emphasised the need to increase exposure to religion and spirituality, and the re-integration of these vulnerabilities in a natural way. He stated that for him "A secure identity leads to openness'. The first step is to install a secure sense of self from childhood, prior to exposure to different ideas, values and beliefs. When you are secure in your own beliefs, it is easier to learn from and respect others. In this sense, home schooling may provide a challenge, as you remain exposed to your value systems and do not interact with value systems that differ from your own. Christoph also noted the need to strike a balance between the regulation and openness of digital platforms, a topic that he expands upon more in his latest book Globalance: Ethics Handbook for a Balanced World Post-Covid. He concluded by saying that there needs to be a balance between openness and setting limits and that Farah Pandith had rightly observed that we are not in a world where there are no solutions, we just need to apply ourselves and scale up these solutions.

You can also watch the full video by clicking here.



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