WHAT: A Mars Hill University ethics-across-the-curriculum program led by Rabbi Nancy Fuchs-Kramer, director of the department of Multifaith Studies and Initiateves at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Philadelphia. The rabbi will explore the Judaic, Christian, Islamic and Buddhist traditions and how they agree and disagree as they seek to train their adherents in humility, courage, and compassion.
WHERE: Bentley Fellowship Hall at Mars Hill University
WHEN: Tuesday, March 3, 6 p.m.
WHY? Here a few comments from Rabbi Fuchs-Kramer, who spoke to Xpress.
Do you believe these four faith traditions attempt to access similar wisdom and truths? What are the primary elements that prevent people from differing traditions from appreciating one another?
Fuchs-Kramer: I believe two things to be true: First, that each of our faith traditions are unique, with strengths and insights all our own. I value the “dignity of difference.” At the same time, I also believe that because we are all human, we share some longings. It is the place where we are most needy and humble, the place of “not knowing” that brings us closer together.
I don’t know much about “truth’ or even truths, but I do know that we people of faith are alike in acknowledging how hard it is to live the way we aspire to live, to become the people we want to be. Why is it so hard to be good? What practices can help guide us toward more conscious and compassionate living? These are questions we all ask; we do well to ask them together.
I hope folks who come to the program will get a chance to think about their own lives in ways that they might not have done before. We will explore some questions that you may have thought about by yourself — or with people in your own tradition. Discussing them in a multifaith context should yield some new sparks of light and inspiration. I hope people will come away thinking that Buddhists and Muslims and Jews have something to share that can enliven Christianity — and vice versa, in all directions!