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Individualism based on Protestant assumptions

May 10. 2019
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Re: “Individual freedom and democracy stem from Christianity”, Have Your Say, May 10.

The ethic of individualism and individual responsibility as stated in Paul’s letter comes from Protestantism. John Locke’s political thought, for example, was based on a set of Protestant assumptions. Not only democracy, but also the idea of religious freedom comes from Protestantism.

An important note also needs to be made concerning Buddhism. The views of Christmas Humphreys, the famous British convert to Buddhism, and others must be understood as very much seeing Buddhism through a Protestant prism. The emphasis on scriptures and ethics being paramount in their interpretation of the eastern religion.

Ian Martin

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