Interfaith Dialogue Analysis

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Interfaith dialogue refers to the complaisant, beneficial and progressive interaction at both the individual and institutional levels between people of different religious beliefs. The aim of the interfaith dialogue initiatives in multi-faith Australia is to develop a greater mutual understanding between different religious traditions, and so far it has had an overwhelmingly positive impact on the broader religious landscape in Australia. As stated in the purpose of the National Council of Churches in Australia (NCCA), “To provide opportunity for the national bodies of each faith to come together to build understanding and harmony in the Australian context” (NCCA, 2016). Interfaith dialogue is becoming increasingly important because of the …show more content…
Interfaith dialogue has a strong, positive impact on Australia; alleviating the religious tension existing between denominations and traditions (BOS, 2008). Respecting the diversity of beliefs and allowing different religions to come to a better appreciation of the uniqueness of each other is the core impact of the inter faith dialogue initiatives (Hubspot, 2016). It doesn’t try and force religions to become like each other, or to find similarities between them, but instead aims to create an acceptance of their diversity. As a society, we have become increasingly accepting of cultural diversity since the influx of Europeans and Asians after WW2 in 1945, however we have yet to accept the influx of religious diversities that this has entailed. The religious intolerance and cultural discrimination evident within the broader religious landscape had provoked organisations such as The Jewish Christian Muslim Association to begin. The JCMA aims to reduce violence and racism through its forums for interfaith dialogue and programs which target racism. One of the main impacts of interfaith dialogue is the acceptance and respect of other religions, and this is a clear goal of the JCMA “The JCMA is about meeting people of our own religion and others. We hope to understand other faiths (and our own) more deeply by …show more content…
Interfaith dialogue initiatives have led to religions making many practical contributions to Australian society such as; standing publically united on certain issues, praying in interfaith prayer groups and participating in a number of volunteer projects. In November 2013 the Centre for Christian-Muslim Relations worked with a team from the Church of Jesus-Christ of Latter Day Saints to organise a multi-faith service project. Representatives from various religious backgrounds joined forces to put together food hampers for struggling farmers at Christmas time (Columban, 2016). This is an excellent example of the positive practical impacts that these dialogues can have on real situations and problems. In an increasingly secularised society interfaith dialogue can help different religions to stand together in proclaiming the importance of faith, spirituality and the transcendent aspects of life (Waverly portal, 2016). For example, in 1996 Pope John Paul II held an interfaith prayer service in the Domain in Sydney (Wikispaces, 2016). This practical application of interfaith dialogues and the tangible repercussions it has really emphasize the positive impact that they are having on Australia’s broader religious landscape. Other examples of practical collaborations between religions include the interfaith

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