Theistic Humanism and the Hermeneutic Appraisal of the Doctrine of Salvation

DOI: 10.4236/ojpp.2013.31A042   PDF   HTML     4,268 Downloads   5,495 Views   Citations

Abstract

This essay uses theistic humanism as a super structure to do a hermeneutic appraisal of the doctrine of salvation in a pluralistic world. It operates on the assumption that reality is multidimensional, just as human belief systems and cultural perspectives are diverse. More importantly, is the point that most countries on the African continent house a potpourri of belief systems, prominent among which are Christianity, Islam and Traditional African Religion (ATR). Thus, theistic humanism offers us the opportunity to do a pluralistic assessment of salvation, thereby making myriad interpretations of the notion of salvation possible.Again, the essay neither intends to examine the meaning of God nor is it interested in analyzing how God gets manifested in human existence. Rather, the basic objective is to consider the various ways in which salvation has been conceived in relation to the human condition. In the process of our delineation, it shall be shown that salvation as a doctrine can be conceived from two principal angles which are:1) the perspective of religion and2) the non-religious or secularist perspective. Whereas the first presents other-worldly account of salvation, the second presents a this-worldly account of salvation. The import here is that since in the most ordinary sense, God is all about perfection and human goodness, it implies that the quest for salvation in whatever dimension, deliberately or inadvertently, amounts to the search for the ultimate essence or the most perfect state of reality which religions call God. Consequently, the burden of this essay is to show that salvation is an ideal state of reality which humankind is striving to attain. Bearing in mind that humans as free beings that have the capacity to interpret salvation either anthropocentrically or theocentrically, thereby, making the myriad presentations of salvation possible; one is of the view that metaphysical notions of reality are also contagious of salvation. Hence, for monists and reductionists the way to salvation is narrow and single, while for the pluralists the way to salvation may be narrow but diverse. Thus, since the hermeneutic appraisal of salvation is hinged on the assumption that belief systems are diverse and multi-faceted, the essay privileges the pluralistic presentation of salvation over and above the monistic presentation of salvation.

Share and Cite:

Okoro, C. (2013). Theistic Humanism and the Hermeneutic Appraisal of the Doctrine of Salvation. Open Journal of Philosophy, 3, 264-272. doi: 10.4236/ojpp.2013.31A042.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

References

[1] Alao, N. (1988). Designing peace, tolerance and understanding. Being the introduction to Nigerian studies in religious tolerance; Volume I: Religions and Their Doctrines (C. S. Momoh, M. S. Zahradeen, & S. O. Abogunrin, Eds.). Lagos: Centre for Black African Arts and Civilization (CBAAC) and National Association for Religious Tolerance (NARETO).
[2] Altizer, T. (1955). The gospel of Christian Atheism. London: Collins.
[3] Bah, T. D. P. (1997). Religion, god, and foreign culture in Africa. In Philosophy and metaphysics: A critical introduction. Lagos: Obaroh and Ogbinaka Publishers Limited.
[4] Chinweizu (2005). Gender and monotheism: The assault by monotheism on African gender diarchy. In Anatomy of female power (New Edition). Lagos: Pero Press.
[5] Dukor, M. (2010). Theistic humanism of African philosophy: The great debate on substance and method of African philosophy. Berlin: LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing GmbH & Co. KG.
[6] Durkheim, E. (1968). The elementary forms of the religious life. New York: The Free Press.
[7] Eboh, B. O. (1993). God in Igbo ontology. Being a Paper Delivered at an International Conference Organized by Nigerian Philosophical Association, at University of Lagos Conference Centre.
[8] Feuerbach, L. (1989). The essence of Christianity. New York: Prometheus Books.
[9] Good News Bible (1991). Lagos: The Bible Society of Nigeria.
[10] Heidegger, M. (1962). Being and time. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
[11] Kuznetsov, V. N. (1987). Engels, Ludwig Feuerbach and the end of classical German philosophy. Moscow: Progress Publishers.
[12] Marx, K. (1969). Economic and philosophic manuscript of 1844. Moscow: Progress Publishers.
[13] Microsoft Encarta Premium (2009). Microsoft Corporation.
[14] Nauman, St. E. (1979). Dictionary of Asian Philosophies. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
[15] Nietzsche, F. (1971). Thus Spake Zarathustra. London: Penguin Books.
[16] Noss, J. B. (1990). Mankind’s search for god. New York: Watchtower Bible and Track Society.
[17] Ogundowole, E. K. (1988). Self-reliancism: Philosophy of a new order. Lagos: John West Publication Ltd.
[18] Ogundowole, E. K. (2002). The origin and definition of man. In E. K. Ogundowole (Ed.), Man, history and philosophy of science: A compendium of readings. Lagos: Department of Philosophy.
[19] Rampa, T. L. (1956). The third eye. London: Gorgi Books.
[20] Sartre, J. P. (1969). Being and nothingness. London: Methuen Co. Ltd.
[21] Schaeffer, F. A. (1968). Escape from reason. England: Inter-Varsity Press.
[22] Unah, J. I. (1995). Essays in philosophy. Lagos: Panaf Incorporation.
[23] Uzukwu, E. E. (1988). Religion and African culture. Enugu: SNAAP Press Ltd.
[24] Williams, B. (1999). Stage lighting design. Parts 1-4 Editions, 2c & 2d. On Internet.

  
comments powered by Disqus

Copyright © 2020 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.