Diversity thesis and dependency thesis

The most influential recent proponent of a version of core pluralism has been Huston Smith. (b. 1919) In his view, the common core of religions is a tiered worldview.  This encompasses the idea that physical reality, the terrestrial plane, is contained within and controlled by a more real intermediate plane (that is, the subtle, animic, or psychic plane) which is in turn contained and controlled by the celestial plane. This celestial plane is a personal God. Beyond this is infinite, unlimited Being (also called “Absolute Truth, “the True Reality,” “the Absolute,” “God”). Given that it is ineffable, this Being is neither a god, nor the God of monotheism. It is more real than all that comes from it. The various “planes” are not distinct from it, and it is the ultimate object of all desire, and the deepest reality within each human self. Some experience this Being as if it were a god, but the most able gain a non-conceptual awareness of it in its ineffable glory. Smith holds that in former ages, and among primitive peoples now, such a worldview is near universal.  It is only modern people who are blinded by the misunderstanding that science reveals all, who have forgotten it. (Smith 1992, 2003 ch. 3) The highest level in some sense is the human “Spirit,” the deep self which underlies the self of ordinary experience. Appropriating Hindu, Buddhist, and Christian language, Smith says that this “spirit is the Atman that is Brahman, the Buddha-nature that appears when our finite selves get out of its way, my istigkeit (is-ness) which…we see is God’s is-ness.” (Smith 2003 ch. 3, 3-4)

Diversity thesis and dependency thesis

diversity thesis and dependency thesis

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