The Sacralization of the Humanum: A Theology for a Global Age

October 1, 1999

In "The Sacralization of the Humanum: A Theology for a Global Agenda," José Casanova analyzes the writings and mission of Hans Küng, a religious scholar advocating for a consensus on a global ethic rooted in religion. Casanova notes that Küng's mission ironically fulfills the principle that future religions would sacralize humanity, but through the old religions. Casanova also notes that some of Küng's objectives have succeeded, in that virtually every religious group acknowledges the Golden Rule (to treat every human humanely) as a basic ethical point of consensus, along with basic principles against killing, lying, and stealing, and that major religious leaders throughout the world have signed onto Küng's "Global Ethic." However, Casanova critiques Küng for his lack of specificity, particularly in applying the Global Ethic to geopolitics and economics, which Küng claims as one of his objectives. Casanova also notes several flaws with the principle of the Global Ethic, as it emerged primarily from Western scholars, not organically from religious groups, and that many perceive it to have a Christian or western bias. This article was published in the International Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society.

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