Digest of terms


a social and economic order based on belief in the desirability of common ownership of property and goods. Attempts to introduce such are variously reported throughout history.

Specifically Christian examples of this are found in the early church in Jerusalem as described in Acts 2:44-5 and 4:32-5; throughout the history of monasticism with the vow of personal poverty upheld in a system of communal living; and in some radical Protestant groups at the time of the Reformation such as Anabaptists and Diggers.

By contrast, expressly rejecting any association with religion, has been the communism known as Marxist-Leninism in Eastern Europe and Maoism in China (Marxist ethics). Attempts to combine the insights of Christianity and Marxism are most influential in the Latin American advocates of Liberation Theology and found also in some versions of Christian Socialism. Comparable combinations have been attempted between Marxism and both Buddhism and Islam.

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