Christian Particularism in Light of Extraterrestrial Intelligence


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Pages: 3

Proposal for the Tempelton Foundation – Summer School at Munich, February 2012.

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The »scandal of particularity« affects all monotheistic religions, which 1) derive
their basic beliefs from revealed knowledge at a special event in history and 2) make
salvation impossible for all, who are not in possession of this knowledge or who
negate it. The central christian way to salvation is the belief in birth, death and res-
urrection of Jesus Christ as the incarnate christian God. Paul formulates the position
of the New Testament as »[being] without Christ, being aliens from the commonwe-
alth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without
God in the world« (Eph 2:12). The problem between the universal need for salvation
and the particular moment of actual salvation affects not only the aliens from the
commonwealth of Israel, but escalates with aliens from outer space, the existence of
Extraterrestrial Intelligence (ETI). In this paper I want to formulate several positions
on how to face ETI with the particularism of christianity.

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