Proselytism is the practice of attempting to convert people to another opinion and, particularly, another religion.
The word proselytism comes from the Greek language prefix 'pros' (towards) and the verb 'erchomai' (I come). Historically in the New Testament, the word proselyte meant a person who had converted to the Jewish religion. Though the word proselytism was originally used in Christianity, it is also used to refer to other religions' attempts to convert people to their beliefs or even any attempt to convert people to another point of view, religious or not. Today, the connotations of the word proselytism are often negative.
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References[change | change source]
- C. Davis (1996). "Joining a Cult: Religious Choice or Psychological Aberration?". Cleveland-Marshall Journal of Law and Health 11. http://www.religioustolerance.org/cult_art.htm.
- "Russian Canonical Territory". http://www.catholic-church.org/church-unity/r_c_t_e.htm.
- "Human Rights Without Frontiers Int.". European Court Final Judgments on Religious Freedom Issues 1964-2001. http://www.hrwf.net/html/0804courtfinal.htm.
Other websites[change | change source]
- Everybody Proselytizes! by Jorge Luis Gonzalo, 2008
-  International Religious Liberty Association: "Proselytism, Change of Religion, and International Human Rights" by Natan Lerner.
- Pope Benedict XVI asks always for guarantees that Christian faith can be "proposed" and that it can be "freely chosen": When Civilizations Meet: How Joseph Ratzinger Sees Islam
- For a discussion of some of the legal aspects of defining illicit proselytism, see the article Proselytism, Change of Religion, and International Human Rights, by Natan Lerner, PhD
- Proselytism and Crypto-Christians in Cyprus