From Science, Philosophy and Spirituality to your own Religion

From Science, Philosophy and Spirituality to your own Religion

UNISA gave Dr Albie Gibson permission to publish this revised work based on his Masters thesis.

PREFACE

The German philosopher Karl Jaspers (1883-1969) coined the expression “axial point” to describe the period 800-200 BCE. According to him, these were the years which produced key characters who had great influence in shaping humanity. Jaspers had the Israelite prophets and the Buddha in mind. A number of scholars took over his idea but preferred the name “axial period” and shifted the borders to include the prophets Zoroaster and Mohammed. According to them the axial period stretched from 12 000 BCE to 600 CE. Still others said that these dates merely indicated the “first axial period” during which the major religions known today, originated. According to them we are now living in the “second axial period”. The main characteristíc of the second axial period is the fact that the religions which originated during the first axial period are now confronted with modernity. What the net effect of modernity on the religions will be, is not yet evident. The rise of fundamentalism is but one reaction. Some believers are reacting negatively on de- velopments in the modem world. They struggle to adjust and fear changes. There are, however, signs that a large number of people are adjusting to changes in the world and that they will not abandon religion. They are becoming more and more aware that humans are part of all living beings and that they need to protect life on earth. Moreover, they need to adjust their truth-claims and enter into dialogue with the followers of other religions.

In this book Albie Gibson reflects on what religion is and does, and then gives an overview of the major religions and their origins. He takes a closer look at the Jewish roots of Christianity and how it evolved as a religion. In the last chapter he reflects on how Christianity can be adapted so that it can still give meaning to people s lives.

Professor Maurice Wiles once wrote: “So giving expression to Christian belief is never a matter of simply being faithful to the teaching of the past, of preserving the deposit of truth as it has been handed on to us by previous generations. Every generation has the task of constructing forms of belief and practice appropriate to its own times and culture.” Albie Gibson took this advise to heart when he wrote his book.

Sakkie Spangenberg

‘n Gedrukte kopie van die boek kan ook bekom word deur ‘n epos te stuur aan albie@astonbay.co.za

 

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In hierdie boek kyk Jean Oosthuizen krities na die NG Kerk se geskiedenis sedert Jan van Riebeeck se aankoms in die Kaap, tot waar die kerk vandag is. In sy bestaan van meer as 350 jaar het die NG Kerk en die Nasionale Party so verstrengel geraak dat die kerk as “die Nasionale Party in gebed” bekend gestaan het. Die teoloog Ferdinand Deist se voorspelling in die laat tagtigerjare dat die kerk sal ondergaan wanneer apartheid tot ’n einde kom, blyk vandag in die kol te wees. As instelling wat apartheid uit die Bybel geregverdig en verdedig het, het die kerk se vernietigende invloed nie alleen gemeenskappe in Suid-Afrika van mekaar vervreem nie – ook lidmate wat kritiese vrae gestel het, is na die periferie geskuif. Talle individue se menswaardigheid is geskend en verskeie loopbane is onder die dekmantel van Christenskap vernietig, soos die skrywer self kan getuig. Oosthuizen se blik strek egter wyer as sy ervaring toe hy in 2013 as nuusredakteur van Kerkbode geskors is ná die opspraakwekkende Woordfees-debakel. Sy reis vanuit die kerk se binnekring sluit die verhale in van gelowiges sowel as ongelowiges wie se paaie met die NG Kerk gekruis het. Die opkoms en ondergang van die NG Kerk bied ’n kontemporêre blik op die tragiese geskiedenis van ’n instelling wat deur die aandadigheid aan verontregting stelselmatig irrelevant geraak het.

Jean se boek kan by enige van die bekende boekwinkels aangekoop word of van takealot.com bestel word teen die afslagprys van R 229. Die Boek kan ook as e-boek (Kindle weergawe) by Amazon.com aangeskaf word.