Synopses & Reviews
When medieval theologians wrote their Quaestiones Disputatae, the disputed questions concerned relatively peripheral topics, for most Christians agreed on all of the most basic matters. But today even the most central issues in Christianity are controversial, and Christian discourse itself is part of the wider dialogue that includes all the great religious and philosophical traditions of the world. In this book a leading philosopher of religion offers fresh insights into some of the disputed religious questions of our time. John Hick begins by addressing the most fundamental questions: whether religion is a wish-fulfilling projection or a human response to the Transcendent, and whether religious experiences constitute authentic awareness of a divine Reality. He then considers specifically Christian beliefs, such as the deity of Jesus and the problems encountered by attributing to Jesus both all divine and all human properties, and he suggests an alterative image of Jesus as a man extraordinarily open to and inspired by the divine spirit. Hick gives a personal account of how he has come to accept religious pluralism - that the major world faiths are different but equally valid responses to ultimate Reality. He considers how much Christians have to learn from Buddhism, discusses the ongoing dialogue among Jews, Christians, and Muslims, and outlines a philosophy of religions - a conception of the relationship between world religions and between them and the ultimately Real. Finally he turns to the mystery of death and, using the resources of the world religions and of parapsychology, suggests a possible conception of life after death.