Olli Dürr Society Ecumenism: Buddhism & Christianity converge

Ecumenism: Buddhism & Christianity converge

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Ecumenism is progressing. The Pope and a delegation from Cambodia met in the Vatican. Buddhism and Christianity must come together using the binding agent “climate and environmental protection”.

Points of contact are climate and environment

environment ecumenism

Climate and environmental protection as a binding agent for ecumenism

How do Christianity and Buddhism fit together? Actually not at all. There are no other points of contact apart from the self-evident fact of mutual charity. In fact, the goal promised in Buddhism is the complete opposite of what is promised in the gospel. Therefore, the Roman Catholic Church uses a universal binding agent: climate change and environmental protection.

With the encyclical Laudato si’, Pope Francis heralded the global environmental protection agenda and even formed a kind of “10 Green Commandments“. An interfaith, linked to Catholic social teaching. With that you get not only all religions, but also the atheists and the secular systems in one and the same boat.

Pope Francis meets Cambodian delegation

The approach to Buddhism has now taken another step forward. Pope Francis was “visited” by a delegation of civil society representatives, Buddhists and the Vicar Apostolic of Phnom-Penh, Cambodia, according to Vatican News on Thursday. Of course, Francis placed the topics of climate and environmental protection at the center of this mutual exchange. To do this, the Pope forged links with Buddhism by emphasizing the Far Eastern teachings of “simple living” and responsibility towards all living beings. Christians also have the “ecological responsibility” to cultivate and care for nature, as it is written in Genesis 2:15. Also taken up in Laudato si’, pages 95 and 217.

It takes a change of heart

Now it is “urgently necessary” to look for solutions at all levels, said the Pope. These must be “based on respect for the fundamental interdependence between the human family and nature”. Interfaith cooperation is a goal of enduring friendship among religious leaders. People must be enabled “to live peacefully as brothers and sisters who are reconciled with each other and with their environment,” said Francis.

In addition to a “change of heart” in people in order to “transform the events of this world into personal suffering”, everyone is now called upon to make their own contribution. According to Francis, this also includes “changing pace” and changing bad habits. A fair and balanced future must be created together.

The gospel must not matter

It goes without saying that our LORD Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, cannot have a place in the cross-religious attempts at rapprochement. The gospel remains in the background. The statement of Jesus alone, “No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 16:4) would immediately break any existing connection to Buddhism, Islam, Hinduism and other faiths. But the gospel is irrelevant to the papacy’s self-understanding, since the self-proclaimed “representative” can do as he pleases at his own discretion.

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