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The Philosophical Challenge of Religious Diversity

Edited by Philip L. Quinn and Kevin Meeker

Publication Date - 23 September 1999

ISBN: 9780195121551

256 pages
6-1/2 x 9-1/4 inches


This unique volume collects some of the best recent work on the philosophical challenge that religious diversity poses for religious belief. Featuring contributors from philosophy, religious studies, and theology, it is unified by the way in which many of the authors engage in sustained critical examination of one another's positions. John Hick's pluralism provides one focal point of the collection. Hick argues that all the major religious traditions make contact with the same ultimate reality, each encountering it through a variety of culturally shaped forms of thought and experience but all offering equally effective paths to salvation or liberation. Another central position is William P. Alston's defense of the Christian practice of forming beliefs about manifestations of God in response to experiences of divine presence or activity. Articles by Hick and Alston develop their arguments and other selections respond, criticizing or defending various aspects of one or both positions. Religious skepticism, religious exclusivism, religious inclusivism, and other perspectives are also represented. In the introduction, the editors suggest connections among the articles and report on additional exchanges between the contributors.
The only anthology that provides comprehensive coverage of the current philosophical debate about religious diversity, The Philosophical Challenge of Religious Diversity is ideal for courses and seminars on the philosophy of religion, philosophical theology, and world religions.

Table of Contents

    Introduction. The Philosophical Challenge of Religious Diversity, Kevin Meeker and Philip L. Quinn
    1. Of Miracles, David Hume
    2. No Other Way: A Middle Knowledge Perspective on the Exclusivity of Salvation through Christ, William Lane Craig
    3. Religious Pluralism and Salvation, John Hick
    4. The Philosophy of Religious Pluralism: A Critical Appraisal of Hick and His Critics
    5. A Contemplation of Absolutes, Ninian Smart
    6. Truth and the Diversity of Religion, Keith Ward
    7. Religious Pluralism and the Divine: Another Look at John Hick's Neo-Kantian Proposal
    8. Polytheism, George I. Mavrodes
    9. Hick's Pluralism and "Reformed Epistemology": A Middle Ground
    10. Pluralism: A Defense of Religious Exclusivism, Alvin Plantinga
    11. Religious Diversity and Perceptual Knowledge of God, William P. Alston
    12. Religious Experience and Religious Diversity: A Reply to Alston, J.L. Schellenberg
    13. Religious Experience and Religious Pluralism, William J. Wainwright
    14. Towards Thinner Theologies: Hick and Alston on Religious Diversity