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Divine MultiplicityTrinities, Diversities, and the Nature of Relation$
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Chris Boesel and S. Wesley Ariarajah

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780823253951

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823253951.001.0001

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Differential Pluralism and Trinitarian Theologies of Religion

Differential Pluralism and Trinitarian Theologies of Religion

(p.119) Differential Pluralism and Trinitarian Theologies of Religion
Divine Multiplicity

S. Mark Heim

Fordham University Press

This chapter focuses on Trinitarian theology and, in dialogue with John Thatamanil, explores the extent to which this theology itself may be a genuinely interreligious project. It first analyzes the pluralist position, with additional dimensions brought into the discussion by David Griffin, John Cobb, and others, in response to the pluralist proposal originally made by John Hick. It then responds to six difficulties that John Thatamanil identifies in the trinitarian approaches to religious diversity, and follows this with an assessment of Thatamanil's own alternate thesis, which proposes a heuristic philosophical trinitarianism derived from Buddhist-Christian-Hindu dialogue—the three elements of which are ground, contingency, and relation. The chapter argues that the theological resources distinctive to the Christian tradition offer the most viable way for Christians to engage and respect the self-understanding and self-definition of other religions and religious practitioners.

Keywords:   religious pluralism, Trinity, trinitarian theology, John Thatamanil

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