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Author: Felix Wilfred
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9788184654509
India means 1 .2 billion people, one sixth of humanity, with the largest concentration of the poor in the world. There are competing dreams and imaginations about its future. The book is an attempt to look at the burning issues of today and hope with the poor and the marginalized for a different India unlike the one the pundits of neo-liberalism imagine and project.
It engages us in a conversation with the Christian community and reflects on how it could be a partner in actualizing the dream of the poor and the marginalized for a different India. In this common journey, Christians are invited to reflect critically on the society, on the Church as well as on theology, to be able to optimize their contribution for a better India of the poor.
It is a call to shift from the model of “development” and “nation-building” to which Christians pledged their commitment in the post-Independent years, to a new model of contribution in the vastly changed and complex circumstances of these times of liberalization and globalization with all their consequences on the life of the underdogs of history. The book argues why the Church needs to be self-effacing and act in tandem with peoples and movements for a better and different India.
Comparing is an everyday human affair. It is done in numerous ways, and each one of them has its own implications. Comparison could be employed to create and maintain a hierarchy. Such is the case when one speaks of “higher and “lower” castes. Here is a comparison that has no basis; it is a sheer mental construction. And yet it can play unimaginable havoc in society.
When we speak of “better” India, better society, better Church and theology, the comparative is used here in a different sense and with a different purpose. It expresses an aspiration towards something that is not yet there. Here comparison helps us to look to the future which creates a mood of excitement. Skepticism and cynicism are the enemies of the future.
“India” in the title of this book does not refer simply to a national entity. It is a concept that represents the reality of over one billion people, one sixth of the people on earth. As of now, things do not go well for the overwhelming majority of the people India represents. There is a yearning in the masses of people for a different and better India than what they experience today.
The election is an occasion when the aspirations of the people come to the fore collectively. There is always the apprehension - given past experience - whether the elected new government and peoples’ representatives will really wipe the tears off the eyes of the small men and women, and ensure them the basic needs for a dignified life. In these times when the liberal economy and the corporate world impose their agenda on the country and its poor, there is a real concern as to what extent the elected government would take to its heart what touches the marginalized people.
On the other hand, no one dreams of a better India more than those at the bottom of the society, the underdogs of history. They long for more justice, greater equity, and higher level of security. And the list can be endless. Here is the secret of a better India.
The present book is an attempt to relate the life and mission of Christians to the challenge of a better India. The mission for a better India is spelt out in three directions - a better society, a better Church and better theologies. They are closely interlinked.
PART 1: For a Better Society
Chapter 1: Burning National Issues
Chapter 2: Mission to Society
Chapter 3: Merging of Borders: Pastoral Relationship of the Church to the World
Chapter 4: What Can “Upper Caste” Christians Learn From Dalit Christians?
Chapter 5: Cultural Resources for Reconciliation and Peace: Overcoming Communalism
PART 2: For a Better Church
Chapter 6: From World-Mission to Global Christianities
Chapter 7: Becoming Christian Interreligiously
Chapter 8: Lay Missionaries in a De-Clericalized Church and in an Autonomous World
Chapter 9: What is “Christian” about Christian Colleges? A New Quest for Identity
Chapter 10: Inspirations of Vatican II for a Better Church: In the Context of India and Asia
Chapter 11: Reform of Governance in the Church: The Case of the Roman Curia
Chapter 12: Rethinking the Church-Leadership in India
PART 3: For Better Theologies
Chapter 13: Tribal Theology - Third Wave of Indian Theology
Chapter 14: Prophetic Eco-Theology: The Need of the Hour
Chapter 15: The Academic Character of Theology and Theological Education
Chapter 16: Postcolonialism and the Subalterns: Implications For Theology