After watching this interview, you may find yourself asking whose side Huston Smith is on. In the present atmosphere of "with us or against us," Smith’s informed and dispassionate take on Fundamentalism falls into neither familiar, comfortable camp.
The occasion for the interview was a Phil Cousineau article, entitled Why Fundamentalism Matters, for Parabola Magazine.
The interview begins with Christian Fundamentalism, a topic Smith came to, in his own words, "loaded for bear," having just written the book The Soul of Christianity: Restoring the Great Tradition. However, the topic develops into fundamentalism as it manifests itself in religion in general.
Smith is at home in this interview in more ways than one. His seminal NET series The Religions of Man, which formed the basis for the book of the same name (now The World’s Religions), blazed the trail for the now commonplace spirit of pluralism in America. With increasing strength, he comfortably navigates the currents of comparative religion. He is also literally at home, the conversation taking place in his Berkeley living room on an afternoon in June of 2005.
For the last fifteen years Phil Cousineau has collaborated with Smith on a series of documentary films, books, and lectures including The Art of Pilgrimage: The Seeker’s Guide to Making Travel Sacred, The Hero’s Journey: Joseph Campbell on His Life and Work, based on his long association with the great scholar of mythology.
Musical Credits: When Kings Come Home, Written & Performed by Peter Lang ©Horus Music