a loose designation for a wide range or religious thought unified more by a temper of mind than specific BELIEFS. It originated in the nineteenth century and reached its height in America in the decades preceding the Second World War. It was characterized by
   1) an eagerness to discard old ORTHODOXIES when judged IRRATIONAL in the light of modern knowledge or irrelevant to the central core of religious experience;
   2) a confidence in the power of human REASON guided by experience;
   3) a BELIEF in freedom;
   4) a BELIEF in the social NATURE of human existence;
   5) a FAITH in the benevolence of GOD and the goodness of creation.
   Liberal Protestantism enthusiastically endorsed BIBLICAL CRITICISM. The movement is generally traced back to the German THEOLOGIAN Frederick SCHLEIERMACHER and seen in the work of Albrecht RITSCHL who manifested a drive for the relevant. By the early twentieth century Liberal Protestantism was characterized by an emphasis on the fatherhood of God and brotherhood of man.

Concise dictionary of Religion. 2012.

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