Trinitarian Theology between Religious Walls in the Writings of Raimon Panikkar

Christopher Denny 1
  • 1 St. John‘s University, USA


The Theology Without Walls (TWW) project attempts to interpret spiritual experiences without subjecting them to a priori criteria from religious traditions, but TWW does not substitute universalized secular criteria for religious criteria. Some have promoted “multiple religious belonging” as a prism through which to interpret the experiences of people participating in more than one spiritual path. Yet the concept of multiple religious belonging still presumes a framework in which communal traditions coordinate one’s spiritual experiences. For TWW, however, belonging does not have to be religious or interreligious or multireligious. The manner in which practitioners thematize, or refuse to thematize, their journeys is not a prerequisite for participation in TWW. Is TWW then a sect of the disaffiliated that rejects communal encounters and traditions? How does TWW operate in practice? Raimon Panikkar’s writings on the Trinity demonstrate how a theologian/practitioner well versed in two traditions responds to what he calls “the cosmotheandric experience” by articulating how trinitarian presence is not primarily a doctrine but contrasting facets of reality to which Christianity and Hinduism bear witness. Panikkar’s work is a model of how scholars working with TWW can engage with traditions and simultaneously remain attentive to the particularities of everyday reality.

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Open Theology is an international Open Access, peer-reviewed academic journal that welcomes contributions written in English addressing religion in its various forms and aspects: historical, theological, sociological, psychological, and other.