Tiffany Buchanan, State of Formation, Dec.17, www.stateofformation.org/2011/12/interfaith-dialog-respect-is-key/
This semester I had the honor and pleasure to work as the educational assistant for a course, “Religious Pluralism” at McCormick Theological Seminary under the leadership of Dr. Robert Cathey and Janaan Hashim, Esq.
The core of this class exposed seminary students to five different faith traditions. Each week students read a chapter and supplemental materials on the differing faith traditions and then the following week as a class we took field trips to the differing temples of worship that corresponded with the previous week’s readings.
“Religious Pluralism” is a religious and cultural immersion experience for McCormick seminary students. As a sociologist and mother, I think that immersion and exposure is one of the best teaching methods for students and children to truly learn, thus I promote it in the classroom, as well as my own personal life.
As I visited the Synagogue, the Mosque, the Sikh temple, the Buddhist temple and finally the Hindu temple I learned more completely how not to judge other peoples faith and worship as lower than my own. I do not feel challenged about my own faith by being respectful of other people’s faith traditions. I do not feel compelled to “make” other people believe my religion is better or more right.