In most parts of South and Central Asia, one religious tradition has a numerical majority. Though Christians are a minority, they have had a considerable influence on society through healthcare and education. Dialogue has been the mode of the church’s mission in the Asian context. Modes of dialogue include: the dialogue of life, which involves the daily sharing of life; the dialogue of collaborative action, which fosters collaboration for justice, peace and ecological wholeness; the dialogue of theological reflection, which involves entrenchment into the beliefs of other religions; and the dialogue of spiritual experience, which brings people of spiritual traditions together. ‘Triple dialogue’ envisages a dialogue not just with the cultures and the religions of Asia but also with Asia’s poor. Inculturation was an attempt to ensure that Christianity was purged of its Western influence. This enabled hospitable forms of Christian interaction– sometimes at the risk of being accused of assimilation, syncretism and/or compromise. Many nations are confronted with a tendency toward nationalistic self-identification based on religion. This can lead to restrictions on proselytism, viewed as an attack on the community and a denigration of traditional values.
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