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Religious pluralism and equivalence of religions: theses - texts - literature (updated)


Encounter with other religions.

Theological requirements:
Truth of Faith and Revelation
for salvationin different ways

Theses by Reinhard Kirste

The catholic area was found for many centuries
exclusivist
position ("Outside the Church there is no salvation"), to which the Protestant variant can be assigned: "Outside Christianity there is no salvation". From a missionary perspective, this is still partly cultivated - if not so obviously under post-colonial conditions.

AllinclusiveistPositions ultimately favor a higher Christian understanding of other beliefs (e.g. Hans Küng and Walter J. Hollenweger, despite their dialogical openness). Other religions do not have full access to the truth of salvation. Karl Rahner's saying about the
anonymous Christians
in other religions is as famous as it is problematic. Christological constrictions in the sense of being binding for other beliefs also seem to be the real handicap of the inclusivist positions, no matter how reluctantly they are articulated ("strict" or "mild" inclusivism. The superiority of Christianity with regard to salvation remains binding because otherwise the others would not need Christ, his cross and his resurrection in the sense of a concept of salvation.

The American theologianPaul Knitter shows in this context that in inclusivism, one's own religion is the best.
He therefore calls this oneparticularisticposition
--- most recently in a lecture about:
Interreligious dialogue: lasting difference or creative potential, Münster February 3, 2014.

Theologies of religious pluralism, soreligious pluralisticPositions,
on the other hand, try to let every belief system have its right and recognize it as an independent way to salvation.
The most important pioneer of these concepts is the English theologian and religious philosopherJohn Hick(1922-2012).
The theologian and religious educatorPaul Schwarzenau(1923-2006)
put it this way:

All religions need one another


not only in their similarities,

but also in their differences,

through which they complement each other.

We should be at home in our own religion

and be guests in the other,

Guests, not strangers.

The interreligious dialogue conducted in this way wants
So break down the strangeness and through encounter
Highlight similarities and differences in a clear way,
But do not see differences as an obstacle on the different paths of salvation. In addition, encounters always happen between people. Their behavior is often a more accurate indicator of their belief
than their theology or philosophy.
The more immovable dogmatic positions are held,
a peaceful encounter is all the more endangered
and an unbiased religious discussion.

Religious pluralistic positions are therefore to be understood as forums
not in the sense of religious arbitrariness, but about crossing borders
to enable and to experience mutual enrichment.
So it should be tried consciously, the consciousness of tolerance
and to fully promote reconciliation between religions
and in this way also to serve peace in society.


The following theses can provide guidance:

  • Dialogue can only make sense betweenequal partnershappen.
    It's not about equality, it's about
    principle equivalency
    just given
    different beliefs and assumptions of thought.
  • Absolute claims of individual religions (as well as Christianity) may only refer to the commitment of one's own faith. This does not allow inclusive thinking, however hidden, that classifies the other religious traditions as inferior in any way. However, it also does not allow inclusive appropriation (“anonymous” Christians, Buddhists, Muslims, etc.).
  • TheMission understanding(especially of the Christian faith) is to be interpreted in the sense of a personal testimony and commitment, without wanting to convert others to one's own belief.
  • The different religions do not express ultimate truth. you arelinguistic, ritual and spiritual approaches to the transcendent. Your statements are preliminary and require revision.
  • Religions are embedded in diverse cultures and different ways of thinking. They are therefore asdifferent ways to salvation to understand.
  • In a globalized world, religion can no longer live for itself, but only in relationship with others. Interreligious encounter is therefore a challenge and enrichment at the same time, m.a.W. the other religious beliefs are necessary in the sense of theComplementarity as the complementary understanding by the other.

Ethical convergences of four world religions using two examples: here

Diversity and equality of religions

(To read - click on the headlines)


Back of the book by Gnana Robinson (ed.): Unite to Serve.
Kanyakumari Peace Trust 2002


Denis Diderot
by Dimitry Levitzky, 1773/74(Wikipedia.fr)




A warning from the scout


Denis Diderot (1713-1784):


The time has come from philosophy to godlessnesslike from religion to fanaticism,but from fanaticism to
Barbarism it is only one step.


relpäd / Relplur theses, last updated,23.05.2017