Buddhist and Christian? : an exploration of dual belonging

“This is a detailed exploration of Buddhist Christian dual belonging, engaging – from both Buddhist and Christian perspectives – the questions that arise, and drawing on extensive interviews with well-known individuals in the vanguard of this important and growing phenomenon. The issue is pressing insofar the last century has witnessed a gradual but profound transformation of the West’s religious landscape. In today’s context of diversity, people are often influenced by more than one religion. Multireligious identities are consequently on the rise. At one end of the spectrum are those who identify themselves as fully belonging to more than one tradition. One of the most prevalent combinations is Christianity and Buddhism This book addresses central and fundamental questions. How is it possible to be authentically Buddhist and authentically Christian when, for example, God is central to Christianity yet absent from Buddhism; when Christians have faith in Jesus Christ while Buddhists take refuge in the Buddha; when Christians hope for heaven and Buddhists hope for nirvana; and when Buddhists and Christians engage in different practices? Are those who identify themselves as belonging to both traditions profoundly irrational, religiously schizophrenic, or perhaps just spiritually superficial? Or is it possible somehow to reconcile the thought and practice of Buddhism and Christianity in such a way that one can be deeply committed to both? And if it is possible, will the influence of Buddhist Christians on each of these traditions be something to be regretted or celebrated?”– Provided by publisher.