Original Research

Godsdiensverskeidenheid, -onverdraagsaamheid en -vryheid. ’n Prinsipiële besinning (1)

B. J. van der Walt
In die Skriflig/In Luce Verbi | Vol 39, No 1 | a374 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ids.v39i1.374 | © 2005 B. J. van der Walt | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 July 2005 | Published: 30 July 2005

About the author(s)

B. J. van der Walt, Skool vir Sosiale en Owerheidstudies, Potchefstroomkampus, Noordwes-Universiteit, South Africa

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Abstract

Religious diversity, intolerance and freedom: A principial reflection (1)
This essay as well as a following one attempts to address six interrelated problems – of vital importance for Christians – in contemporary societies: People today live in a world of growing religious diversity and contact in the same country and city. Apart from well-known world religions, this diversity includes different kinds of revived pre-Christian religions as well as brand-new cults. Does the secular model offer a solution for handling the great diversity and mutual contact/conflict among religions? People often do bad things in the name of their religious convictions. How could this kind of intolerance – even violence – be explained? The constitutions of most con- temporary countries guarantee religious freedom. Is this basic human right fully – also structurally – realised? In the follow-up article three issues, closely related to the three previous problems, will be discussed: If religions are legally equal, does it also imply that they are equal in nature, that every one of them can be regarded as true? If Christians reject the principial equality of all religions, in what sense can Christianity be regarded as unique? In the light of the danger of religious conflict, what should be the ground(s) for and the nature of religious tolerance?

Keywords

Religious Diversity; Religious Freedom; Religious Intolerance And Violence;

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