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Justice-based ethics

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ISBN: 9781928396710 Year: Pages: 332 DOI: 10.4102/aosis.2018.BK77 Language: English
Publisher: AOSIS
Subject: Religion --- Philosophy
Added to DOAB on : 2019-04-05 11:21:03
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The book reflects academically on important and relevant ethical fields from a multidimensional South African context. The book challenges conventional borders from different ethical, theological, philosophical, economic and cultural perspectives with insight and expertise and seeks to add academic-ethical value, locally and globally, with its different points of departure deeply embedded in justice. From a mainly qualitative methodological perspective, this scholarly book demonstrates that ethics requires analytical thinking and critical people who, in an existentially and emancipatory way, can help make the world a more just, decent and humane place in which to live. 

The authors, who represent different academic and cultural backgrounds, present in their respective chapters their research systematically, intersectionally and constructivistically, based on profound theoretical analysis and reasoning. This epistemology results in an act of knowing that actively gives meaning and order to the reality to which it is responding. By doing this, they point out that people are in an ongoing process of becoming more human – allowing ourselves and our fellow human beings to flourish and to reach fuller potential through justice-based ethical reflection and action.

Nicholas Bhekinkosi Hepworth Bhengu’s Lasting Legacy

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Book Series: HTS Religion & Society Series ISBN: 9781928396581 Year: Pages: 350 DOI: 10.4102/aosis.2018.BK86 Language: English
Publisher: AOSIS
Subject: Religion
Added to DOAB on : 2019-04-05 11:21:03
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This is a scholarly book that commemorates the legacy of Rev. Nicholas Bhekinkosi Hepworth Bhengu who was born on 05 September 1909 at eNtumeni, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. He was the founder of the Back to God Crusade in the 1950s that has become institutionalised within the Assemblies of God. He taught his church to be self-sustaining and also encouraged material independence through hard work. He died on 07 October 1985 at Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa, leaving many people in Africa influenced by his rich legacy as an evangelist, pastor, teacher and church planter to this day. 

Bhengu combined evangelism with development, which was critical for the black people who were under a repressive regime in South Africa and in sub-Saharan Africa. He was a religious revolutionary who ‘planted’ more than 2000 churches in South Africa and neighbouring countries by emphasising non-denominationalism without pressurising converts to discard their churches and join others. He was determined to build a movement that would be a vehicle to reach out to the continent of Africa through his churches. The book aims at providing academics and researchers with reference material of interactions between spirituality, church dynamics, socio-economic development and political environment. Its contribution to existing research with regard to the formative growth of Christianity in Africa is significant and innovative. The book’s target audience includes academics in the religious fields of missiology, church history and contextual theology, specifically researchers with intent to write scientific commentaries on the life history of Bhengu.

Perspectives on theology of religions

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Book Series: HTS Theological Studies/Teologiese Studies ISBN: 9781928396369 Year: Pages: 263 DOI: 10.4102/aosis.2017.hts12 Language: English
Publisher: AOSIS Grant: University of Pretoria
Subject: Religion
Added to DOAB on : 2017-11-30 11:02:29
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In the public theology discourse, the concept ‘public square’ has become significant. In today’s multicultural and globalised world it is inevitable that people with different religious affiliations will encounter one another in the public square. ‘Public theology’ cannot but become ‘theology of religions’. Scholars in the field of religion studies are compelled to reflect theologically on the relevance of religiosity in the postmodern secular world. The term ‘theology of religions’ refers to the academic inquiry into the relationship between religions. The collected essays constitute such an inquiry. In the end, it is not so much about the encounter of religions, but rather of people. Religion is no longer regarded as a monolithic body of beliefs and practices. The authors concede that the concept ‘religion’ is too fluid to be delineated precisely. The book’s approach to the relationship between religions, i.e. ‘theology of religions’, reflects how the authors understand the origin and nature of religion (a ‘theology of religion’ in the singular). This book focuses more on ‘theology of religions’ (plural) than on ‘theology of religion’ (singular). The main objective of the book is to present a variety of perspectives on how theology of religions manifested in different contexts. This includes historical (i.e. Luther’s theology of religions and the Roman Catholic position on other religions as taken by Vatican II) as well as cultural and religious perspectives. In the first chapter, the editor gives a brief overview of the development of the discipline of theology of religions. The postmodern era is characterised by an almost non-foundational approach. The second chapter traces the development of the discipline in the Roman Catholic tradition in particular. This contribution is based on the insights of P.J. van der Merwe (1944–2014), who as researcher and Head of the Department of Science of Religion and Missiology at the University of Pretoria, developed a specific theological position on non-Christian religions. A whole generation of theologians was trained in this school of thought. He passed away in 2014 and this publication pays tribute to his life’s work on religions and their relations. The contributions that follow are the culmination of the research of postgraduate students at the University of Pretoria. The third chapter presents a perspective on the Reformation, with a particular focus on Martin Luther. In this year of the quincentenary anniversary of the Reformation the legacy of Reformed belief is highlighted. The fourth chapter describes the relationship between Christianity and Islam from the perspective of a willingness to embrace. The fifth chapter analyses the relation between Christianity, Judaism and Islam from the perspective of intergroup threat theory. A model for theology of religions in a South African context is developed in the sixth and final chapter. This scholarly book pays tribute to the academic contribution of P.J. van der Merwe, mentor of the authors of these multifaceted reflections on theology of religions. The target audience is specialists in the field of religion studies. The distinctive contribution of the book is the innovative perspectives on the relationship between Islam and Christianity in both the Roman Catholic and Protestant contexts.

The legacies of Albert Schweitzer reconsidered

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ISBN: 9781928396031 Year: DOI: 10.4102/aosis.2016.tlasr11 Language: English
Publisher: AOSIS Grant: University of South Africa
Subject: Education --- Philosophy --- Religion
Added to DOAB on : 2017-03-10 11:01:18
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This book on the legacy of Albert Schweitzer contextualises this remarkable intellectualist, humanist, medicine-man, theologian and Nobel Prize winner. This collected work is aimed at specialists in the humanities, social sciences, education, and religious studies. The authors embrace philanthropic values to benefit Africa and the world at large. The publication engages with peers on the relevance of Schweitzer’s work for humanitarian values in Africa. The essays in the book stimulate further research in the various fields in which Schweitzer excelled. Its academic contribution is its focus on the post-colonial discourse in contemporary discussions both in South Africa and Africa at large. The book emphasises Schweitzer’s reverence for life philosophy and demonstrates how this impacts on moral values. However, the book also points to the possibility that Schweitzer’s reverence for life philosophy is embedded in a typically European appreciation of ‘mysticism’ that is not commensurate with African indigenous religious values. From an African academic perspective, the book advocates the view that Schweitzer’s concept of the reverence for life supports not only the Biblical notion of imago Dei but also the African humanist values of the preservation and protection of life, criticising the exploitation of the environment by warring factions and large companies, especially in oil-producing African countries. It also argues that Schweitzer’s disposition on ethics was influenced by the Second World War, his sentiments against nuclear weapons and his resistance to the Enlightenment view of ‘civilisation’. With regard to Jesus studies the book elucidates values promoted by Schweitzer by following in Jesus’ steps and portraying Jesus’ message within a modern world view. Taken over from Schweitzer, the book argues that Jesus’ moral authority resides in his display of love and his interaction with the poor and marginalised. The book demonstrates Schweitzer’s understanding of Jesus as the one who sacrifices his own life to bring the Kingdom of God to realisation in this world. The book commends Schweitzer’s insight that we know Jesus through his toils on the one hand, and through our own experiences on the other. It is in a mixture between the two that the hermeneutical gap between then and now is bridged. It is precisely in bridging this gap that Schweitzer sees himself as an instrument of God’s healing. It defines Schweitzer as the embodiment of being a healer, educationalist and herald of the greening of Christianity. His philosophy on the reverence for life prepares a foundation for Christians to think ‘green’ about human life within a greater environment. He advocates aspects of education such as lifelong learning, holistic education and a problem-based approach to education. Finally, the book analyses both critically and appreciatively Albert Schweitzer’s contribution to the concepts of religious healing prevalent in African Christianity today.

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