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    Jewish attitudes to other faiths

    Q. What should be one’s attitude to members of other faiths?

    A. We are all made in the image of God. By honouring the other, I honour God.

    Q. What happens if I find the other person’s ways strange?

    A. If God can cope with him or her in His world, surely I can cope with them in mine.

    Q. Won’t the other person’s wrong beliefs keep them from Heaven?

    A. Firstly, how can I be sure their beliefs are wrong? Maybe those beliefs are right for them.

    Secondly, Heaven is up to God. Why not worry more about a good life on earth?

    Thirdly, even in terms of Heaven, surely the criterion is deeds, not words or creeds. The Jewish sages say, “The righteous of all peoples have a share in the world to come”.

    Q. Don’t I have a duty to get others to have the right beliefs?

    A. There are many options in the market-place of ideas. They cannot be imposed on anyone but only gently explained, though hardly anyone can be argued into belief; it comes or does not come as the result of cultural and historical factors and personal experience.

    Q. Are other religions true?

    A. Firstly, all religions may be equally true – but then none has any real value.

    Secondly, all religions may have truths – but then how true is each one?

    Thirdly, all religions may be true for their own adherents – but is there no objective truth?

    Fourthly, the others have gone astray – but the ultimate Judge is God.

    Q. Can religions live together?

    A. Despite our differences, we have ample common ground and there is work we can share.

    Q. Can people of different faiths every really understand each other?

    A. If s almost impossible to get inside someone else’s head, but we can still honour and respect their conscience and convictions.

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