Gifford Lectures
Help | Site Map | About Us | Contact Usspacer


Any Word





  What’s New

2014 Gifford Lecture Series: University of Edinburgh

What is Caesar’s? Adjudicating Faith in Modern Constitutional Democracies to be held on Monday 19 May 2014. [More…]

2014 Gifford Lecture Series: University of Glasgow

Givenness and Revelation begins Tuesday 20 May 2014. [More…]

YouTube Channel

Gifford Lectures now has a YouTube Channel! [More…]


A new Gifford Lectures page for St. Andrews. [More…]

Eight Books Based on Gifford Lectures

Eight books derived from the Gifford lectures are available. [More…]


  Follow Us On

Facebook Twitter YouTube


Beyond Ideology 1979–1980

Ninian Roderick Smart


Table of Contents


In Beyond Ideology, Ninian Smart faces up to the reality that in the world of humans there exist different Beyonds, or at the very least there are different maps of the world hereafter. From this it becomes clear that the problem of the plurality of religions cannot be left unaddressed. Smartís consideration of the plurality of religions is completed in a much broader perspective than is usual. The question that he considers is not proving any religion right or wrong; his focus is on which worldview could be an actual possibility for modern humanity living in a world that will soon resemble a global city. Smart approaches the problem of the plurality of religion by categorising religions as worldviews. He then extends this view to the so-called secular worldviews, or ideologies, such as Marxism, nationalism, Maoism and social democracy. Such ideologies can fulfil this role because they are composed of symbolic acts that foster belief systems and sacramental actions. Smart believes that the ultimacy of religion lies in a discovery of identity, and that these ideologies, otherwise considered secular worldviews, are inadequate as a solid foundation to defend the fundamental rights of human beings. This publication is an attempt to bring certain insights drawn from the history of religions to bear on the task of framing a worldview that synthesizes important ingredients both from East and West and from individual experience and secular politics.
KEYWORDS: Ideology, Beyonds, Transcendence, Buddhism, Christianity, Buddha, pluralism, secular, religion, worldview, Marxism, Maoism, social, democracy, nationalism, diversity, socialism, transcendental

Publication Data

OnlineHarper and Row1981
Original n/a
Not Available
Templeton Press