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Title: Are Religions Incommensurable?
Subtitle: Reflections on Plurality and the Religious Imagination
Author(s): GREEN, Garrett
Journal: Louvain Studies
Volume: 27    Issue: 3   Date: fall 2002   
Pages: 218-239
DOI: 10.2143/LS.27.3.938

Abstract :
Recent philosophical discussion about religion and the religions, as well as Christian theology of religion, has been dominated by controversy surrounding one particular approach, which generally goes under the name of pluralism. Its best known, though not its original, proponent is John Hick, whose 1989 book An Interpretation of Religion offers the fullest and most widely discussed presentation of the pluralist position. A rather lengthy literature has accumulated in which the pros and cons of the pluralist thesis are debated. I want to examine the issues raised by pluralism from a perspective that, sofar as I am aware, has not previously been taken– the religious imagination. I hope to show, first, how a careful analysis of the role of imagination in religious belief and practice can clarify the situation of a religiously plural world, and second, why the pluralist theory of religion represented by Hick and his supporters is inadequate both philosophically and theologically. Finally, I will argue that the alleged moral superiority of pluralism over other positions is unfounded.

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