Festival of Faiths in Louisville, Kentucky

621 WordsFeb 18, 20182 Pages
Festival of Faiths in Louisville, Kentucky. This festival encourages calls on different houses of worship and sponsors lectures on world religions. The author refers to several advocates of religious reconciliation, including the Dalai Lama, Martin Buber, Abraham Heschel, Thomas Merton, and Pope John Paul II. Interestingly, Professor Niebuhr seems to lack a basic understanding of the religions to which he refers. For example, he at times misunderstands the scriptures he cites. The fundamental teaching of the Bhagavad-Gita, for example, is not “selfless…. duty,” which he is seemingly paralleling to the Protestant concept of noblesse oblige. But it is indeed the more demanding Hindu practice (yoga) of disinterested action, which demands renunciation of the fruits of any deed. Professor Niebuhr views interfaith dialogue as a means to overpower the “absolutism” of fundamentalism in all faith traditions. And yet, these are exactly the people who are the most reluctant to participate in discussion with those of other faiths or even other Christian denominations. Professor Niebuhr sees interfaith understanding as a “civic discipline,” akin to honesty in paying taxes. While many Americans must travel a distance to discover a Sikh or Native American with whom to engage in interfaith dialogue, Muslims are another subject. The bibliography as well as the notes is a good resource for further reading. These resources are especially significant for a book on interfaith dialogue as

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