Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Université catholique de Louvain, Peeters
Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses. Louvain Journal of Theology and Canon Law vol:86 issue:4 pages:355-377
In the literature concerning interreligious dialogue, it is often said that dialogue partners need to combine commitment with openness on the other. It is however unclear what the terms commitment, identity, firmness, and openness mean in the context of interreligious dialogue. In order to bring some clarity to all this, it may be best to fundamentally reflect on the relationship between identity and alterity . To that end I turn to the French philosopher Paul Ricœur and his hermeneutical anthropology especially. I will first investigate what Ricœur says regarding religious diversity. Then I will elaborate on what, according to him, it means to be ‘religiously committed’ in the midst of religious plurality. I will develop the notion of the frailness of religious commitments, and faith testimony and show how this impacts the encounter with the religious other. More precisely, I want to show how the frailness of religious commitments can explain why interreligious encounters are far from obvious, why the religious other is not always the welcome other. Ricoeur while acknowledging the difficulties connected with interreligious dialogue, also urges us no the dramatize the encounter with the religious other. From that perspective he speaks about hospitality as a model for interreligious dialogue. What that entails, I will develop in the last part of article.