This pioneering handbook proposes an approach to pluralism that is relational, principled, and non-relativistic, going beyond banal calls for mere "tolerance."

The growing religious diversity within societies around the world presents both challenges and opportunities. A degree of competition between deeply held religious/worldview perspectives is natural and inevitable, yet at the same time the world urgently needs engagement and partnership across lines of difference. None of the world’s most pressing problems can be solved by any single actor, and as such it is not a question of if but when you partner with an individual or institution that does not think, act, or believe as you do. The authors argue that religious literacy—defined as a dynamic combination of competencies and skills, continuously refined through real-world cross-cultural engagement—is vital to building societies and states of neighborly solidarity and civic fairness.

Through examination, reflection, and case studies across multiple faith traditions and professional fields, this handbook equips scholars and students, as well as policymakers and practitioners, to assess, analyze, and act collaboratively in a world of deep diversity.

The Open Access version of this book, available at www.taylorfrancis.com, has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 license.

part |18 pages


chapter 1|16 pages

Rethinking religious literacy and pluralism

Crossing cultures, making covenants, and engaging globally
ByChris Seiple, Dennis R. Hoover
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part I|130 pages

What is religious literacy for?

chapter 2|17 pages

Covenantal pluralism

Toward a world of peaceable neighborhoods
ByW. Christopher Stewart, Chris Seiple, Dennis R. Hoover
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chapter 3|15 pages

Covenantal pluralism

Perspectives from Jewish history and thought
ByDavid Saperstein
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chapter 5|14 pages

Are Calvinists for pluralism?

The politics and practice of a Protestant possibility
ByRobert J. Joustra, Jessica R. Joustra
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chapter 6|16 pages

Deed over idea

Toward a shared Caliphate
ByMahan Mirza
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chapter 7|11 pages

Hinduism, insular pluralism, and religious literacy

ByShylashri Shankar
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chapter 8|13 pages

The elephant in the room

Buddhist religious exclusivism and prospects for covenantal pluralism
ByPaul Fuller
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chapter 9|16 pages

Isomorphism, syncretism, and poly-ontological dynamics

The implications of Chinese religion for covenantal pluralism
ByDavid A. Palmer
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chapter 10|13 pages

On neutrality and the nones

Secular humanism, covenantal pluralism, and “religious” literacy
ByRoy Speckhardt
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part II|120 pages

Who needs religious literacy?

chapter 11|14 pages

Religious literacy and K-12 education

ByBenjamin Pietro Marcus
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chapter 12|12 pages

Religious literacy and higher education

ByJames Walters
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chapter 13|9 pages

International studies, religion, and cross-cultural religious literacy

ByJames K. Wellman
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chapter 14|14 pages

Religious literacy in development and humanitarian relief

ByKatherine Marshall
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chapter 15|15 pages

Religious literacy and diplomacy

ByNicole Bibbins Sedaca
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chapter 16|13 pages

Religious literacy, chaplaincy, and spiritual care

ByWendy Cadge, Carolina P. Seigler, Trace Haythorn
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chapter 17|13 pages

Corporate religious diversity, equity, and inclusion as covenantal pluralism

ByBrian J. Grim, Kent Johnson
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chapter 18|13 pages

Religious literacy and social services

ByChelsea Langston Bombino, Stanley Carlson-Thies
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chapter 19|15 pages

Religious literacy and American journalism

A charge to public service
ByJosh Good
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part III|173 pages

Where can religious literacy and covenantal pluralism make a difference? Case studies and practitioner perspectives

chapter 20|13 pages

Engagement and embrace—From apartheid to democracy

A reflection on rupture and a toolkit for transition
ByEbrahim Rasool
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chapter 21|11 pages

The secularism paradox

Living with deep difference in the Middle East
ByShadi Hamid
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chapter 22|14 pages

Two steps forward, one step back

Prospects for covenantal pluralism in Laos and Vietnam
ByStephen Bailey, Hien Vu
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chapter 23|12 pages

Cross-cultural religious literacy, competencies, and skills

An Indonesian experience
ByMatius Ho
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chapter 24|14 pages

“Salad bowl” secularism

India's covenant to preserve pluralism
ByTehmina Arora
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chapter 25|13 pages

Religious literacy and Pakistan's pluralist potential

ByMinhas Majeed Khan
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chapter 26|11 pages

Geo-religious literacy, orthodoxy, and plurality in Russia

Prospects for covenantal pluralism
ByKatya Drozdova
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chapter 27|12 pages

Transition and transformation in Western Europe

Possibilities for covenantal pluralism
BySughra Ahmed
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chapter 30|13 pages

Understanding—and bridging—religious liberty tribalism

A case study in talking about Muslims' rights with Christian conservatives in America
ByAsma T. Uddin
Size: 0.17 MB

chapter 31|9 pages

Seeking a virtuous feedback loop

Robust pluralism and civic engagement in the United States
ByZeenat Rahman
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chapter 32|10 pages

Fairness as a path forward on LGBTQ rights and religious liberty

ByShirley Hoogstra, Robin Fretwell Wilson
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chapter 33|16 pages

From the pulpit to pluralism

A personal reflection
ByBob Roberts
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