Interreligious Dialogue as Experiential Source of Theology
Taking its lead from the biblical account of Jesus’s response to the Canaanite woman (Matt. 15: 21–8), this chapter argues that Jesus’ own concept of God’s relation to humanity shifted as a result of his encounter with someone of another religion, and that this narrative can be invoked to argue that the experience of interreligious dialogue should (and does) inform the development of Christian doctrine. First, the author applies a comparative theological understanding of rasa in Hindu traditions to the forms of dialogue identified named in Dialogue and Proclamation, with a view to analyzing how affective states arise in the presence of religious others. Second, she suggests that, because sensory and affective experiences carry meaning, discernment of doctrine is already happening when Christians encounter other faiths.
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