Title: The road from magic to faith
Subtitle: Life and work of Alb.C. Kruyt (1869-1949), missionary in Central Celebes, Indonesia.
Alb.C. Kruyt worked as a missionary in Central Celebes from 1892 till 1932. In those forty years he became well known as a missionary ethnographer. Although traces of his thinking are found in publications of many others Kruyts thinking was thus far hardly researched systematically. This study therefore endeavors to analyze his missionary thought and acting, to describe these systematically and to evaluate his contribution. His ideas are placed in the context of colonial mission and the study establishes the extend of his influence on mission, the church and science (theology, comparative religion and cultural anthropology). The main focus of this study is to systematically describe Kruyts views on animism, his thoughts about christian mission and the relationship of both. The title of this study, The Road from Magic to Faith, intends to express that Kruyt in his missionary work presupposed an underlying evolutionary development of religion. In this conviction he was strongly influenced by the anthropologists E.B. Tylor, G.A. Wilken and F.D.A. van Ossenbruggen.
keywords: Netherlands Missionary Society, Central Celebes, Alb.C. Kruyt, misisonary ethnographer, evolution of religion, animism, christianization, Dutch ethical theology, theology of religion
The study begins with a biography (part I), in which Kruyt and his work are described based on available archival materials.
Part II is the core of the study: the chapters 4 through 6 provide a systematic description of Kruyts views on the relationship of animism and mission. Chapter 4 elaborates on Kruyts ideas about animism as primitive and evoluating religion and traces which persons influenced Kruyts thinking about the religious history of animism. Chapter 4 focusses on Kruyts views on mission. The author pays special attention to Kruyts concept of collective christianization and how his views in this regards were shaped through the influence of G. Warneck and R. Grundemann. Chapter 6 evaluates the relation of animism and mission in the work of Kruyt.
Part III analyzes how Kruyts evolutionary ideas about culture and religion shaped his missionary work among the To Pamona of Central Sulawesi. Chapter 7 deals with the process of christianization and Kruyts ideas about the role of the colonial government. Chapter 8 deals with the translation of the Bible and churchplanting and chapter 9 describes the impact of his work on adat and the veneration of God. Pivotal question is if Kruyt was able to maintain his evolutionary thinking in the praxis of his missionary work.
The fourth and last part of the study focusses on the extend of Kruyts influence on others. Chapter 10 focusses on his influence on church and mission, in Indonesia and elsewhere. Chapter 11 describes Kruyts influence on theology, comparative religion and cultural anthropology. The concluding twelth chapter draws conclusions and evaluates Kruyts contribution. In this fourth part of the study the author discusses the views anthropologists, such as Alb. Schrauwers, hold of Kruyt. The appendices contain an overview of Kruyts life and work, a brief genealogy of his family, a complete bibliography of Kruyts work and a number of sermons which he held among the To Pamona.