“My hand over my mouth... I have nothing more to say”

Letting Allah Breakthrough Our Dogmatic Certainties

  • John Mansford Prior St. Paul’s Institute of Philosophy, Ledalero, Indonesia
Keywords: The Book of Job, Ayyub, Religious dogmatism

Abstract

This is a personal reflection by a Christian on The Book of Job/Ayyub from the Hebrew Bible. Religious dogmatism confines adherents within their tradition over against adherents of other
religious traditions. Such a stance is not able to respond to the great improbables of life such as the suffering of the innocent. It can also lead to communal conflict and to the impoverishment of faith by imaging God in superficial anthropomorphic terms. Only through facing the tempest within ourselves, and in the surrounding society, will we encounter Allah the All Merciful, the All Compassionate, who moves us beyond dogmatic certainties and religious partisanship. Such was the journey of Job/Ayyub: a journey from certainty to faith. With such a purifying journey we can embrace religious pluralism not as compromise but rather as an occasion for mutual conversion and mutual enrichment.

References

Goergen, Donald, J. (2001) “Dialogue and Truth”, Focus, 21/2, 96-112.

Johns, Anthony Hearle (2006) “Job”, in Jane Dammen McAuliffe (ed.), Encyclopaedia of the Qur’an. Leiden: Brill,. Vol.III, pp.50-51.

Niebuhr, Reinhold (2008) The Irony of American History. Chicago: University of Chicago Press reprint, [original 1952]

O’Donohue, John (1997) Anam Cara: Spiritual Wisdom from the Celtic World. London.

O’Donohue, John (1998) Eternal Echoes: Exploring our Hunger to Belong. London.

Pieris, Aloysius (1988) An Asian Theology of Liberation. Edinburgh: T&T Clark.

Prior, John Mansford, (1998) “From Ghetto to Diaspora: Challenges Facing the Indonesian Churches at a Time of Unrest”, Mission Studies XV/2, 85-102.

Prior, John Mansford (2001) “Portraying the Face of the Nazarene in Contemporary Indonesia: Literature as Frontier-Expanding Mission”, Pacifica 14/2, 172-190.

Prior, John Mansford (2001) “Dialogue and Culture”, Focus, 21/2, 113-134. [Multan, Pakistan]

Steenbrink, Karel (1998) “Y.B. Mangunwijaya’s Blueprint for a Diaspora Church in Indonesia”, Exchange 27/1, 17-36.

Wheeler, Brannon M. (2002) “Job”, in Prophets in the Qur’an: An Introduction to the Qur’an and Muslim Exegesis. London/New York: Continuum, 157-160.

Published
2016-06-30