The BLOG: Faith and Law

True pluralism and the belief in truth

“True pluralism demonstrates respect not only for the existence of different faiths and traditions, but also for the religious certainty of those who adhere to a particular faith.”
NewBostonPost Publisher Tina McCormick

The above quote from Tina’s message is absolutely correct. But I believe she must go one step further: One does not respect another community if one actively debunks the existence of that which most concerns it. Thus any multiculturalism which opposes the possibility of truth is in reality a uniculturalism that seeks to destroy every single religious or other belief community except for Western skepticism.

Common belief in truth (along with disagreement as to its content) is in turn the foundation of all intercultural dialogue; dialogue in which we seek to find partial agreement on truth and partial agreement on action in response to truth. Without the faithfulness to truth which is at the core of every belief system, we have nothing important to say to each other.

For these reasons, I worry about our dear Pope Francis and his campaign against what he calls “fundamentalisms.” He seems to be opposing religious certainty per se, which undercuts the rest of his great work. He should say only that the Islamic State is making a mistake as to the content of God’s will, not that it is making a mistake to submit to God’s will.

Richard Stith J.D., Ph.D.

Richard Stith J.D., Ph.D.

Richard Stith J.D., Ph.D., is a senior research professor at Valparaiso University School of Law.