In the absence of some form of relativism, is it possible to respect other religions and beliefs without being patronizing?
Certainly. But you will always find people who are patronizing toward those who don’t agree with them, whether the subject is religion or something else.
Absolutely, and we are called to do so by the Church (see Nostra Aetate). We do so by respecting those areas where other religions agree with the Truth (as found fully and without error in the Catholic Church) and disagreeing with those beliefs that are erroneous in other religions.
For example, Muslims believe in One God, the God of Abraham. We, as Catholics, respect that b/c it is true - the God of Abraham is the one true God. But they also believe many errors, Christ is just a prophet, Mohammed had a true divine revelation, etc, etc, these we don’t agree with or respect (error has no right to be respected, although people in error do).
Then how much respect could be afforded to me?
Define what “respect” means to you? (Please?)
Treating me as an intelligent human being.
Then, absolutely, yes! In fact, with that in mind, I’m called to respect all humans in light of the truth that I hold to that we are all created in the image of God regardless of religious beliefs, political beliefs, and their senses of humor (or lack thereof). lol It doesn’t matter one whit if you agree that we are in the image of God or not, I respect (and love) you because of my beliefs, not in spite of them. I don’t think that is patronizing… not if I really believe it.
As a side note; I see you mentioning experiential happenings that lead you to your current beliefs. Have you ever posted about those experiences on this forum anywhere? If not, I’d be interested in reading about them if you feel like sharing; shoot me a PM?
This is a great way of putting it. Thanks.
We, as Catholics, are called to respect all people (including Norse Pagans ) not because of what they believe, but because who they are (beloved sons and daughters of God, made in His image and likeness). We respect you as a person, as much as we respect a Catholic.
Norse Paganism, on the other hand, doesn’t gather as much respect as it has much less truth in it than many other religions. Where Norse Paganism teaches the Truth, we respect it and in those areas where it teaches error, we don’t. Just like any other religion.
You have to separate respecting people (all of whom deserve respect), from respecting ideas (not all of whom deserve respect). That is the key. Whether we are talking about sin (Hate the sin, love the sinner) or different religions (respect the person with the beliefs and the truths those religions teach, no respect for the errors those religions teach).
I like your answer. Very well said.