This study is an exploration of the relationship between Judaism and the world's religions. Beginning with an examination of the biblical view of pagan worship, the book traces the history of Jewish attitudes towards other religious traditions in the rabbinic period, the Middle Ages, the early modern age and contemporary times. In the final part of this volume, Dan Cohn-Sherbok formulates a radically new Jewish theology of religious pluralism. In his view, what is now required is for Jews to free themselves from the absolutes of the past. No longer should they regard Judaism as embodying God's full and final revelation, instead the Divine should be placed at the centre of the universe of faiths. Given such a shift in perspective, the way would then be open for interfaith dialogue of the most profound kind. From its ancient origins, Judaism adopted a generally tolerant attitude to other traditions - what is possible today is for this spirit of tolerance to deepen, and serve as a foundation for a common quest with like-minded adherents of other faiths for spiritual insight and religious truth.
This study should be a source for all those who seek to understand Judaism in relation to the major world's religions. Rabbi Dan Cohn-Sherbok is the author of "Issues in Contemporary Judaism", and the editor of "Islam in a World of Diverse Faiths" and "Religion and Public Life".
Acknowledgements - Introduction - The Challenge of Religious Pluralism - Biblical and Rabbinic Views - Medieval Conflict between Jews and Christians - Persecution and Apostasy in the Early Modern Period - The Impact of the Enlightenment - Jewish Reflections in the Age of Emancipation - Modern Jewish Thought - Post-Holocaust Jewish Thinkers - Jewish Religious Pluralism - Conclusion