David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Buddhism currently enjoys the reputation of being one of the leading voices in a chorus that sings the praises of religious tolerance and perhaps even of pluralism. It is open to question, however, whether this reputation is deserved. The purpose of the present article is to examine whether the teachings of classical Buddhism have a contribution to make to the jubilation over religious pluralism that has become fashionable in some quarters in recent years. It is hoped that this examination might shed some light both on some of the implications of religious pluralism and on the spirit of the teachings of classical Buddhism. A task preliminary to dealing with this question is to clarify what is meant by religious pluralism. For the purpose of this discussion, let us take “pluralism” to signify not the mere acknowledgment that there is variety but the celebration of this variety. Whereas tolerance might be described as the attitude of being resigned to the fact that a variety exists, pluralism will be taken to mean the attitude that variety is healthy and therefore something to be desired. And religious pluralism, of course, will be taken as the attitude that it is salubrious to have a variety of religions. Such an attitude might be founded, for example, on an analogy with biology. The health of each living organism, it could be argued, is enhanced by the general health of the organism’s wider environment, and the health of this wider environment is in turn enhanced by the rich variety of species of organisms living therein. The value of variety, if one follows this biological analogy, is not merely aesthetic, not merely a pleasant respite from the monotony of too much uniformity; rather, variety is what makes life of any kind possible. Similarly, it could be argued by a devoted religious pluralist, the variety of religious beliefs and practices and experiences and modes of expression is vital to human survival and self-understanding. And just as the health of an individual organism, such as a cow, might actually be enhanced by the presence of other apparently annoying organisms, such as gadﬂies and mosquitoes, the health and perhaps even the very survival of any one religious tradition might actually be enhanced by the presence of other apparently antagonistic traditions, or by the presence of heresies within the same tradition..
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library||
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Kelly James Clark (1997). Perils of Pluralism. Faith and Philosophy 14 (3):303-320.
Andrew Davis (2010). Defending Religious Pluralism for Religious Education. Ethics and Education 5 (3):189 - 202.
Merold Westphal (1999). The Politics of Religious Pluralism. The Proceedings of the Twentieth World Congress of Philosophy 1999:1-8.
Seyed Hassan Hosseini (2010). Religious Pluralism and Pluralistic Religion: John Hick's Epistemological Foundation of Religious Pluralism and an Explanation of Islamic Epistemology Toward Diversity of Unique Religion. The Pluralist 5 (1):94-109.
Amir Dastmalchian (2009). Religious Ambiguity in Hick’s Religious Pluralism. International Journal of Hekmat 1:75-89.
Avi Sagi (1999). Religious Pluralism Assessed. Sophia 38 (2):93-115.
Philip L. Quinn & Kevin Meeker (eds.) (2000). The Philosophical Challenge of Religious Diversity. Oxford University Press.
Veit Bader (2003). Religions and States. A New Typology and a Plea for Non-Constitutional Pluralism. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 6 (1):55-91.
John Hick (1997). The Possibility of Religious Pluralism: A Reply to Gavin D'Costa. Religious Studies 33 (2):161-166.
David Basinger (1988). Hick's Religious Pluralism and “Reformed Epistemology”. Faith and Philosophy 5 (4):421-432.
John Kelsay (1996). Review: Plurality, Pluralism, and Comparative Ethics: A Review Essay. [REVIEW] Journal of Religious Ethics 24 (2):403 - 428.
Jeroen de Ridder (2011). Religious Exclusivism Unlimited. Religious Studies 47 (4):449-463.
Added to index2010-12-22
Total downloads14 ( #162,606 of 1,696,470 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #79,559 of 1,696,470 )
How can I increase my downloads?