Pluralism

When we say pluralism, what do we mean? Good question.

We follow a model of interfaith engagement developed by the Chicago-based non-profit named the Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC).

IFYC’s approach to interfaith engagement pulls heavily from the work of Harvard scholar Diana Eck and revolves around three components[1]:

           

            1.) Respect for individual religious or nonreligious identity.

                        Respect for identity means that everyone can bring their full identities to this work. There’s space for people to believe that they are right and others are wrong, and that their beliefs are true and others’ are not. Interfaith cooperation is not syncretistic or relativistic; no one has to concede exclusive truth claims to be part of it – whether you are an Orthodox Jew, a conservative Christian, or an atheist, you are welcome to the table of interfaith cooperation.

 

            2.) Mutually inspiring relationships.

                        Interfaith cooperation builds relationships across religious and nonreligious boundaries, while creating space for real conversations about disagreements and difference and a sense that each person gains from the relationship.

 

            3.) Common action for the common good.

                        Interfaith cooperation is based on the conviction that people of different religious and nonreligious backgrounds have shared values that call them to make the world a better place. By working together on local and global projects based on these shared values, individuals learn to connect to those who are different from them while strengthening their communities.

Their idea is simple: face-to-face interaction, as well as conversations with those with whom we disagree, can be a means for mitigating hate and increasing understanding. We think it’s a pretty good idea.

IFYC focuses on shared values and does not suppose or support shared theologies. So do we.

We believe that you don’t have to water-down your own religious tradition in order to participate in interfaith cooperation. Instead, you are encouraged to fully embrace your own tradition and share its distinctives with others. This is our idea of pluralism.


[1] Taken from “From Story to Action: Tips for Bridging the Religious-Nonreligious Divide.” Published Online. Accessed 2 April 2013. IFYC.org.            (http://www.ifyc.org/sites/default/files/u4/From%20Story%20to%20Action_1.pdf)

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3 thoughts on “Pluralism

  1. Pingback: Religious Illiteracy and the Mistake of Fearing Interfaith Engagement

  2. Pingback: Faith Line Protestants | Faith Line Protestants: Moving Forward

  3. Pingback: Faith Line Protestants | Lord Bring your Kingdom: A Holy Week Reflection on Overland Park

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