Article

Religious Diversity and a Global Ethic

Leonard J. Swidler

in The Oxford Handbook of Religious Diversity

Published in print December 2010 | ISBN: 9780195340136
Published online January 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195340136.003.0010

Series: Oxford Handbooks

Religious Diversity and a Global Ethic

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In the past, every civilization always had at its heart a religion, “an explanation of the ultimate meaning of life, and how to live accordingly, based on some notion of the transcendent.” The religion both shaped and reflected the values of the civilization: Islam for the Islamic civilization, Christianity for Christendom, Hinduism for Indian civilization, Marxism (ideology, as the functional equivalent of religion) for the Soviet civilization, and so on. However, in the now emerging global civilization, the question asks itself: What will be the religion at its heart? The answer can only be that religion (ideology)-in-dialogue will be the religion at the heart of the emerging global civilization. Religion (ideology) has five elements: the four C's of creed, code, cult, and community structure; and some notion of the transcendent. There are four main dimensions to dialogue, four H's corresponding to the structure of our humanness: dialogue of the Head, dialogue of the Hands, dialogue of the Heart, and dialogue of Holiness. This article examines religious diversity and proposes a Universal Declaration of a Global Ethic.

Keywords: religion; transcendent; global ethic; global civilization; ideology; creed; code; cult; community structure; dialogue

Article.  6622 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Comparative Religion ; Religious Studies ; Interfaith Relations

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