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“We have not yet reflected sufficiently on how to renew our religious commitments and with them our most basic social institutions, and that in an age of transition there is a great danger of secular and religious extremisms creating conflicts for which we are ill prepared.”
“Fundamentalism is the belief that timeless religious texts can be translated directly into the time-bound human situation, as if nothing significant has change. But something has changed: our capacity for destruction and the risk that conflict will harm the innocent.”
“Living traditions constantly interpret their canonical texts. That is what makes fundamentalism – text without interpretation – an act of violence against tradition. In fact, fundamentalists and today’s atheists share the same approach to texts. They read them directly and literally, ignoring the single most important fact about a sacred text, namely that its meaning is not self-evident. It has a history and an authority of its own. Every religion must guard against a literal reading of its hard texts if it is not to betray God’s deeper purposes.”