Building understanding of process theology in action for everyone

Category: Books (Page 1 of 2)

Link: Letter to My Christian Friends

Introduction

This article is not precisely about process theology, but I think it is valuable to hear the perspective. There are different ways of thinking of the relationship between various faiths. On Energion author, Herold Weiss, in his book Finding My Way in Christianity, discusses exclusivism, inclusivism, and pluralism. In summary, exclusivism says that only those in your faith tradition are saved, inclusivism acknowledges that others may be saved, but it’s because of the events described in your faith. In Christianity, this refers to the death and resurrection of Jesus providing salvation to those who may not know or accept this for themselves. Pluralism says that various religions may bear truth.

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Letter to My Christian Friends is written by a pagan, and discusses how his faith is viewed by others, as well as his own pluralistic approach to faith. It is well worth reading.

Related Book Extract

The traditional exclusivism that has characterized Christian history must not be replaced by an inclusivism that is patronizing or imperialistic. Pluralism is a way of escaping the horns of the dilemma posed by exclusivism and inclusivism. According to exclusivism, Christ is the only savior, and those who do not confess his name will not participate in life. According to inclusivism, all those who are saved, and there may be among them many who have never heard of Christ, are saved by Christ. One of the notable contributions to theological discourse by Karl Rahner was the designation of those who are saved by Christ without their knowing as “anonymous Christians.” This notion was received, at the time of its first appearance, as a great step away from exclusivism. It was not long before several voices objected to it as condescending and imperialistic. Pluralism provides a way of escaping the pomposity of exclusivistic claims and the paternalism of inclusivistic “generosity.” It admits that in other cultures and religious traditions there are also savior figures who work effectively on behalf of the members of those cultures and traditions.

Herold Weiss, Finding My Way in Christianity, p. 193
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