Horizons on Christianity's New Dialogue with Buddhism

Knitter, Paul

A survey of recent Christian literature on the dialogue with Buddhism reveals a conversation which is new in both spirit and content. This article summarizes these new directions in five areas: 1) the methodology of dialogue; 2) the nature of the ultimate and of religious language; 3) religious experience as an experience of selflessness 4) the value and need of acting in the world, and 5) the unique, salvific mediation of Jesus and Gautama. In each of these areas, suggestions are offered as to how the new insights from the dialogue with Buddhism might aid in clarifying questions and incoherencies in present-day Christian doctrine and practice.


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Union Theological Seminary
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April 18, 2012