3. Vienna International Christian-Islamic Round Table Wien, 3. bis 6. Juli 2004
Geraldine Smyth OP has had – and continues to have – a profound influence on ecumenical dialogue in Ireland and on the conceptual development of ecumenics as a field of studies. Her work seeks to place theological understandings in service to and in dialogue with other intellectual disciplines in such a way as to benefit human beings. Her response to ‘the troubles’ that have afflicted her native Belfast and Northern Ireland has shown in particular how a focused, open-minded, peace-directed consciousness can be a balm for a troubled society.
‘Hope’ is a contested term in both Buddhism and Christianity. For some Buddhists, the very mention of the word ‘hope’ smacks of a Christian rather than a Buddhist agenda – an agenda that is theistic and, by necessity, theological. For these, confidence in the teaching of the Buddha makes hope unnecessary. But is this the only Buddhist view and, if not, how have other views been articulated and lived? For Christians, hope is not an easy term either, in spite of its apparent centrality within the tradition. It is not optimism or the belief that life for the Christian will hold no difficulties. It is not the belief that humans can escape the consequences of their deeds through divine intervention. It involves confidence in God’s promises but what does such confidence mean in a world threatened with climate chaos and corporate greed? The contributors do not hide the differences or the touching points between Buddhism and Christianity. They open up a dialogue that encourages mutual understanding between Buddhists and Christians, and, potentially, cooperation in working compassionately for a better world.
With contributions by: Sathianathan Clarke, Mitsuya Dake, Sybille Fritsch-Oppermann, Richard Gombrich, Werner Jeanrond, Anthony Kelly, Sallie King, Peggy Morgan, Hiroshi; Munehiro Niwano, Justin Ritzinger and Notto Thelle.