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Political Religion
How Christianity and Islam Shape the World

It is hard to deny that both the Christian and the Islamic faith traditions have played a significant role through the centuries in influencing world affairs. In this book Father Felix Körner, SJ, both a Catholic theologian and a student of the Islamic tradition, looks at the specific ways in which these two Abrahamic religions have shaped society and culture. Utilizing seven models to fully denote the nature of the intersection between faith and culture, between religion and world, Father Körner notes that religions see themselves as the divine means of transforming human conditions. But in the case of both Christianity and Islam, at times religion has served as a means of legitimizing violence and misrule. Looking at what he calls “the social power of religion,” he argues that religion is most fully itself when it is using its influence not to endorse violence or the abuse of power, but when it “acknowledges the other.” Only when religion uses its power to influence the world in a positive manner, when it engages with modernity in a meaningful dialogue, does religion become “political” in a meaningful sense, and only then does it shape the world as it is called to do.

ISBN: 978-08091-5496-8

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