This book discloses a largely unnoticed dialogue between Muslim and Western social thought on the search for meaning and transcendence in the human sciences. The disclosure is accomplished by a comparative reading of contemporary Muslim debates on secular knowledge on the one hand, and of a foundational Western debate on the demise of metaphysics in the human sciences on the other hand. The comparative reading is grounded in a dialogical hermeneutic approach; that is, a hermeneutic approach to texts and (...) cultural traditions that draws upon the work of Hans Georg Gadamer and also upon the insights of inter-religious dialogue. (shrink)
In the context of the late modernity, Karl Rahner endeavoured to offer a theological solution to the current and complicated issue of the religious pluralism. What are the apriorical anthropological data of religions? Has God revealed Himself in a redeeming way also in the extra-biblical religions? Is it still possible to postulate a universal salvation way and an absolute religious truth? Is it possible to acknowledge otherreligions as ways of salvation and their prophets redeeming, at (...) the same time calling Christianity the religion of salvation and Jesus Christ absolute Saviour? What justification and what entitlement still has the Christian apostolate if salvation is possible also in the otherreligions? And what could animate an “anonymous Christian“ to wish to move from the implicit, anonymous belief, of which he is not aware, to the explicit one? In a world of religious diversity and „weak faith”, what strategies of “accommodation” and service should adopt “the little flock” to continue to be the soul of the world? Promoting a Christological-inclusivist perspective – according to which Christ is in the religions of the world and is their fulfillment, and not against or above them – and claiming the mystical apostolate of the good news of the universality of salvation, Rahner offered an answer to all these questions. His answer and the topicality of this answer are the subjects treated in this study. (shrink)
Over 700,000 copies of the original hardcover and paperback editions of this stunningly popular book have been sold. Karen Armstrong's superbly readable exploration of how the three dominant monotheistic religions of the world—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—have shaped and altered the conception of God is a tour de force. One of Britain's foremost commentators on religious affairs, Armstrong traces the history of how men and women have perceived and experienced God, from the time of Abraham to the present. (...) From classical philosophy and medieval mysticism to the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the modern age of skepticism, Armstrong performs the near miracle of distilling the intellectual history of monotheism into one compelling volume. (shrink)
The paper deals with the question of religious tolerance in Europes past and present. Tolerance within Christianity (and within the other so called Abrahamitic or Biblical Religions) is one of the main points. However, the reader is also invited to take a brief look at Europes pre-christian past. To some extent, the religious situation of the Roman Empire in particular rather seems to resemble our own experiences with pluralistic societies in todays Europe than medieval and early modern (...) circumstances would do. Even the ancient problems with religious freedom can be linked with modern counterparts. So this paper will avoid long retrospectives at the well known facts of Europes Christian past such as inquisition and European religious wars in order to deal with some more hidden perspectives of European religious his- tory, which were often obscured by the main historiographical narrative. (shrink)
Inequities in health and health care are one of the greatest challenges facing the international community today. This problem raises serious questions for health care planners, politicians and ethicists alike. The major world religions can play an important role in this discussion. Therefore, interreligious dialogue on this topic between ethicists and health care professionals is of increasing relevance and urgency. This article gives an overview on the positions of Islam and Christianity on equity and the distribution of (...) resources in health care. It has been written in close collaboration and constant dialogue between the two authors coming from the two religions. Although there is no specific concept for the modern term equity in either of the two religions, several areas of agreement have been identified: All human beings share the same values and status, which constitutes the basis for an equitable distribution of rights and benefits. Special provisions need to be made for the most needy and disadvantaged. The obligation to provide equitable health services extends beyond national and religious boundaries. Several areas require intensified research and further dialogue: the relationship between the individual and the community interms of rights and responsibilities, how to operationalize the moral duty to decrease global inequalities in health, and the understanding and interpretation of human rights in regard to social services. (shrink)
In this paper, I argue that, if ‘the overrepresentation of Christian theists in analytic philosophy of religion is unhealthy for the field, since they would be too much influenced by prior beliefs when evaluating religious arguments’ (De Cruz and De Smedt (2016), 119), then a first step toward a potential remedy is this: analytic philosophers of religion need to restructure their analytical tasks. For one way to mitigate the effects of confirmation bias, which may be influencing how analytic philosophers of (...) religion evaluate arguments in Analytical Philosophy of Religion (APR), is to consider other points of view. Applied to APR, this means considering religious beliefs, questions, and arguments couched in non-Christian terms. In this paper, I focus on Islam in particular. My aim is to show that Islam is a fertile ground of philosophical questions and arguments for analytic philosophers of religion to engage with. Engaging with questions and arguments couched in non-Christian terms would help make work in APR more diverse and inclusive of religionsother than Christianity, which in turn would also be a first step toward attracting non-Christians to APR. (shrink)
In this volume, originally published in 1983, W Montgomery Watt looks at the meeting of Christianity and Islam, how they see and have seen each other, and considers how they can aid each other in dealing with the problems of the world today. He emphasizes those beliefs which Christianity and Islam have in common, and shows how they may be justified intellectually.
The purpose of this study is to examine the statements of Ibn al-ʿArabî regarding religions and beliefs through the perspectives of William Chittick and Reza Shah-Kazemi comparatively. Even though his expressions are occasionally elaborated in the light of the theory of the religious pluralism based on Western-Christian thought, by considering the universal message of the Qur’ān Chittick and Shah-Kazemi identify these expressions with “universalism.” This universalist approach bases on the distinction between “ontological will” and “religious will,” and “submission” which (...) is the substance of the term “islam.” While Chittick and Shah-Kazemi agree on issues mostly, it is possible to see that in some sense they differ from each other in their departure points and results. From this perspective, it is going to be seen that Ibn al-ʿArabî’s expressions encompass both the divine religions and otherreligions which do not have a revelation. To examine Ibn al-ʿArabî’s expressions by taking into account the propositions of the religious pluralism will be helpful to comprehend his outlook on the Qur’ān and the Prophet Muhammad. (shrink)
As everyone knows, since the end of the Second World War there has been a sensational revival of interest in the non-Christian religions particularly in the United States and in this country. The revival has taken two forms, the one popular, the other academic. The first of these has turned almost exclusively to Hindu and Buddhist mysticism and can be seen as an energetic reaction against the dogmatic and until very recently rigid structure of institutionalised Christianity and (...) a search for a lived experience of the freedom of the spirit which is held to be the true content of mysticism, obscured in Christianity by the basic dogma of a transcendent God, the ‘wholly Other’ of Rudolf Otto and his numerous followers, but wholly untrammelled by any such concept in the higher reaches of Vedanta and Buddhism, particularly in its Zen manifestation. On the academic side the picture is less clear. There is, of course, the claim that the study of religion, like any other academic study, must be subjected to and controlled by the same principles of ‘scientific’ objectivity to which the other ‘arts’ subjects have been subjected, to their own undoing. But even here there would seem to be a bias in favour of the religions of India and the Far East as against Islam, largely, one supposes, in response to popular demand. (shrink)
The Abrahamic faiths—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—have bequeathed to the world a rich religious and cultural heritage which has been enormously influential through the centuries up to the present. While this is easily evident in the modern practices of these monotheisms, it is also profoundly present in the development of their diverse intellectual traditions with theological and philosophical insights and analyses seeking to understand and explain the nature of the presence of the divine to human beings. The present collection (...) of essays by a wide array of North American scholars provides a dozen studies of language, discourse, debate, and reasoning with a focus on theological and philosophical issues central to these three traditions that commonly call Abraham their human and/or spiritual father. Collectively these essays represent a dialogue among those who work at crossroads of theology, philosophy, history, language, and religion. Their dialogue adds to the growing library of works that seek to highlight collaboration and common ground between these religious and philosophical traditions. The dialogue is multi-directional, taking place within various religions and philosophical perspectives, as well as between religion, theology, and philosophy. It is also multi-purpose in that it seeks to transcend the mere theoretical, and to reveal the concrete; the thinkers, philosophers, and theologians discussed in these essays were deeply concerned with mutual understanding and peaceful co-existence, a goal that has become even more desirable in this post-9/11 world. (shrink)
In Intimations of Christianity Among the Ancient Greeks , Simone Weil discusses precursors to Christian religious ideas which can be found in ancient Greek mythology, literature and philosophy. She looks at evidence of "Christian" feelings in Greek literature, notably in Electra, Orestes, and Antigone , and in the Iliad , going on to examine God in Plato, and divine love in creation, as seen by the ancient Greeks.
This brilliant and engaging critical encounter between Jean-Francois Lyotard and Eberhard Gruber has as its focus a single punctuation mark-the hyphen connecting "Jew" and "Christian" in the expression "Judeo-Christian." While focusing on the nature, meaning, and function of this hyphen, the authors are able to analyze many of the essential differences between Judaism and Christianity, as well as the most significant historical and political consequences of these differences from the Roman Empire to the Shoah. Beginning with a reading of (...) the Letters of Paul, they contrast the Jewish and Christian positions on a variety of issues ranging from emancipation, history, sacrifice, incarnation, faith, law, and sexual difference to the value that is accorded reading, writing, and interpretation within these two traditions. (shrink)
This paper explores definitions of death from the perspectives of several world and indigenous religions, with practical application for health care providers in relation to end of life decisions and organ and tissue donation after death. It provides background material on several traditions and explains how different religions derive their conclusions for end of life decisions from the ethical guidelines they proffer.
Cultural, social and religious diversity is one of the most valued and most valuable aspects of our contemporary, globalized world. Sometimes it even tends to be described as a gift and invitation to dialogue instead of conflict and confrontation, as numerous authors – Samuel P. Huntington, Mary Habeck, Paul Berman, Bruce Bawer and many other – would have us to believe. Especially dialogue among religions – Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity and Islam – is an object of peculiar (...) interest, expectations and hopes. Within the paper recent dialogic tendencies in cultures and societies are presented as one of the most important manifestations of humanism (both religious and a-religious), which is reconstructed in reference to social change, modernization, enlightenment, toleration and pluralism as phenomena analyzed and deliberated by Fracis Bacon on one hand and contemporary Macedonian philosopher and Muslim theologian, Ismail Bardhi, on the other. Is enlightenment without secularization possible? Does religious passion and zeal always lead to suspension, “overcoming”, elimination of reason? In the conclusion of the paper the significance of works by young Polish artist, Joanna Rajkowska, is being highlighted as an example of humanism and dialogism which struggle with recent waves of islamophobia in Europe. (shrink)
This collection reflects the confluence of two contemporary developments: the Buddhist-Christian dialogue and the deconstruction theory of Jacques Derrida. The five essays both explore and demonstrate the relationship between postmodernism and Buddhist-Christian thought. The liberating and healing potential of de-essentialized concepts and images, language, bodies and symbols are revealed throughout. Included are essays by Roger Corless, David Loy, Philippa Berry, Morny Joy, and Robert Magliola.