A unique interreligious dialogue provides needed context for deeper understanding of interfaith relations, from ancient to modern times Freedom is far from straightforward as a topic of comparative theology. While it is often identified with modernity and even postmodernity, freedom has long been an important topic for reflection by both Christians and Muslims, discussed in both the Bible and the Qur'an. Each faith has a different way of engaging with the idea of freedom shaped by the political context of their beginnings. The New Testament emerged in a region under occupation by the Roman Empire, whereas the Qur'an was first received in tribal Arabia, a stateless environment with political freedom. Freedom: Christian and Muslim Perspectives, edited by Lucinda Mosher, considers how Christian and Muslim faith communities have historically addressed many facets of freedom. The book presents essays, historical and scriptural texts, and reflections. Topics include God's freedom, human freedom to obey God, autonomy versus heteronomy, autonomy versus self-governance, freedom from incapacitating addiction and desire, hermeneutic or discursive freedom vis-a-vis scripture and tradition, religious and political freedom, and the relationship between personal conviction and public order. The rich insights expressed in this unique interfaith discussion will benefit readers-from students and scholars, to clerics and community leaders, to politicians and policymakers-who will gain a deeper understanding of how these two communities define freedom, how it is treated in both religious and secular texts, and how to make sense of it in the context of our contemporary lives.
Lucinda Mosher is the rapporteur of the Building Bridges Seminar and editor or coeditor eight previous volumes generated by that dialogue. Concurrently, she is Hartford Seminary's Faculty Associate in Chaplaincy and Interreligious Studies and an affiliate of its Macdonald Center for the Study of Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations. She holds a doctor of theology degree from the General Theological Seminary in New York City.
Participants Introduction Part One: Overviews Who Gets to Decide what Freedom Is? A Christian Perspective C. Rosalee Velloso Ewell God-Given Freedom: An Islamic Point of View Tuba Isik Freedom in the Contemporary Context: Trends in Intersections of Religion, Development, and Foreign Policy Azza Karam Part Two: Islamic Texts on Freedom Aspects of Human Freedom: Reflections on Selections from the Qur'an and Hadith Abdullah Saeed The Qur'an and Hadith on Freedom: Selections for Dialogue Freedom as a Theme in Islamic Thought: An Introduction to Selected Pre-Modern Texts Lejla Demiri Pre-Modern Islamic Writings on Freedom: Selected for Dialogue Modern Muslim Elucidations and Contentions on Freedom: An Introduction to Texts for Dialogue Martin Nguyen Islamic Thought from the Modern Period: Texts for Dialogue About Freedom Part Three: Christian Texts on Freedom Freedom in the Hebrew Bible: From Exodus to Ezekiel, by way of Reba McEntire and Rage against the Machine Christopher M. Hays Old Testament Texts About Freedom: Selections for Dialogue The Motif of Freedom in New Testament Texts: An Introduction Susan Eastman New Testament Texts About Freedom: Selections for Dialogue Thematic Dimensions of Freedom: Christian Texts from the Classical Period Jonathan Chaplin Christian Thought on Freedom in the Classical Period: Selected Texts for Dialogue Freedom in Modern Christian Thought: Introduction to Selected Texts Peniel Jesudason Rufus Rajkumar Christian Writings from the Modern Period: Selections for Dialogue About Freedom Part Four: Reflections Conversations on the Theme of Freedom: Reflections on the Building Bridges Seminar at le Chateau de Bossey Lucinda Mosher Subject Index Scriptural Citation Index About the Editor