De Lubac, Christ and the Buddha

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Abstract

Cardinal Henri de Lubac (1896–1991) considered Buddhism to be, after Christianity, the greatest spiritual fact of history. His groundbreaking studies of it have nevertheless received little previous scholarly attention. De Lubac focuses on Amidism, also known as Pure Land Buddhism, because he regards it as the form of Buddhism possessing greatest affinity with Christian faith, particularly in its conceptions of charity and divine personality. Religion cannot be considered in isolation from culture, however. De Lubac argues that Christian-Buddhist encounter is, wherever it occurs, necessarily also an encounter between Western culture and Buddhism, in the course of which boundaries between religions and cultures are continually defined, dissolved and redefined, especially in the understanding of human personhood. He nevertheless defends the universality of faith in Christ, the Word made flesh, in whom the desire of nature for God characteristic of the whole of humanity is fully expressed and realized.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-30
JournalNew Blackfriars
Volume89
Issue number1020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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