Identifying the Other
Grotius and Erasmus on Bad Christians as Jews and Muslims
Religions, at the very least those of monotheistic nature, deal with the Absolute: God, the human soul, and this world (to name the classic subjects of metaphysica specialis)—as well as, in religions of Abrahamic origin, with the respective role that these three entities play in the all-encompassing story from creation to salvation. It is only natural, then, that any one religion’s claim must be as absolute as the matters it deals with: it itself must be right, all other religions must be wrong. It might be possible for other religions to contain some truths about God amidst their errors, but even then, they must still be considered inferior to the one true religion whose dogmata are not merely partially but wholly true; and as long as it is inferior, i.e., not completely true, it can only be called wrong nonetheless. This strict distinction between true and false belief—Jan Assmann’s mosaische Unterscheidung—may for some present readers sound harsh or intolerant, but it is the only ground on which a religion can stand by its claim that belief or unbelief is not merely a question of way of life, but soteriologically significant.
|Series||Erasmus Student Journal of Philosophy (ESJP)|
|Journal||Erasmus Student Journal of Philosophy|
Kiefer, J. (2020). Identifying the Other. Erasmus Student Journal of Philosophy, 17, 17–26. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/123895