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Deciding To Leave the Religion of Your Birth–Or Not

By Carol P. Christ and Judith Plaskow

[NOTE: The following is an excerpt from the authors’ forthcoming book, Goddess and God after Feminism: Body, Nature, and Power–M.]

[Snip] For me no longer identifying with Christian tradition had a great deal to do with belief. At some point I came to the conclusion that I did not believe in Christianity’s “core doctrines” of Trinity, incarnation, and salvation through Christ. Yet these doctrines are expressed in the Nicene Creed, which is accepted by all Christians. In an interview at a Christian seminary early on in my career, I was asked to define and defend my Christology or theory of salvation through Jesus Christ. My answer that feminism had put a question mark over all doctrines for me was not considered acceptable.

Judaism, on the other hand, is not a religion that stresses belief. Indeed your husband Robert used to love to shock me and other Christians by saying that for a Jew belief in God was not required as long as he or she followed the law. Understanding this difference between Judaism and Christianity helped me to understand that the question of belief in “core doctrines” simply was not as central for you as a Jewish theologian as it would necessarily be for me as a Christian theologian.

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