This conversation is closed.

How do I start a movement in my community where different religions and cultures learn to accept each other and interact with love?

I am in Midwest America where Christians judge others solely on their religious beliefs. I'm desperate to find ideas to promote acceptance between religions.

  • thumb
    Jan 7 2013: There's been projects close to me in Northern Ireland, in the area there was a Chinese and Indian minority, so the community and local council got together to sort of help introduce these people by having a culture weekend
    One weekend the Chinese residents ( with council help) made their street look like it was Chinese New Year with lanterns and dragons, they cooked lots of different dishes and people could just come and talk to them and try the food and do what ever Chinese people did
    The same happened for the Indians and the project was hailed a huge success
    So try lobbying your local council to have a multicultural fair
  • Jan 7 2013: Good point and others have sought to do this, but we are always so busy- Maybe you can help alot just by meeting the other. Okay wde are all busy, but there are mosques,synagouges,temples,etc.all around middle America. Maybe they don't prostelyze as much as Christians, but they are there.
  • Jan 18 2013: A good start would be the schools.

    Schools should celebrate religious feasts from different religions in order to develop children's understanding and experience toward all religions... as a result of being part of these feasts right from childhood, the fear and threat of other unfamiliar religions will disappear as they grow old,....
  • thumb
    Jan 10 2013: Terry, It always helps the responder to be able to view your posted bio. Different locations in Midwestern America could respond to different events.

    For the sake of argument lets say a large city ... St Paul, Minn. Most large cities have a interfaith council that ministers attend. If you are sincere in this quest ask to address them and present some ideas and solicit their cooperation.

    Find a neutral location a community center and have dinners and programs.

    Include cultural, dress, ethnic foods, games, This would rotate and evolve with time to films and lectures. The major goal here is to introduce "people" not politics .. religion ... or conversion .... just enjoyment of the company of others.

    You get the picture ... do your homework and make the pitch.

    Good luck. Bob.
  • thumb
    Jan 8 2013: There is a new book out that I just saw promoted this morning called Us plus Them.

    It makes the case that in modern culture and in media in particular, there is a self perpetuating cycle of emphasizing the negative in human relations, so much so that people have come to believe negative attitudes toward differences to be human nature. The author, who is a senior lecturer at Harvard, argues this is likely assumption rather than reality.

    I have not read the book, having seen an interview with the author just this morning, but it sounds to me as if this book may give you some ideas to help you understand and perhaps influence your community as you would prefer.

    Here is a link to the article I read on this http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news-impact/2013/01/us-plus-them-senior-lecturer-todd-pittinsky/?utm_source=SilverpopMailing&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=01.08.13%20(1)
  • Jan 7 2013: This is a really good question. It's also a very ironic question, because most religions teach that we are all neighbors/family and we need to love one another. I feel like if people actually practiced what they preached we wouldn't have this problem. It's really sad to me, honestly. I'm religious myself, and I firmly believe that anyone can be friends regardless of creed, culture, race, or country. You can agree to disagree. As Feyisayo Anjorin said, there's no way to unify the religious beliefs, but I feel like if you can come up with a way to remind people that we're all part of God's family regardless of where we are spiritually you can succeed. The culture fair referenced by Stewart Gault is a good idea, but maybe with a more religious bent. Or how about game nights at different churches and mosques? Get the kids together. Kids don't care that much about all this stuff until they're older. Board games, dances, just social stuff. You can't be enemies with someone you know and have fun with.
  • thumb
    Jan 7 2013: There is a difference between peaceful co-existence and acceptance of every worldview.
    If you seek peaceful co-existence, then good luck. But if you seek a sort of intergration of beliefs and ideas such that one does not know which is which.....then good luck.

    The world is diverse for a reason. Not all Hindus would love Muslims, not all Christians would accept Buddism.
  • thumb
    Jan 7 2013: I guess I'd educate myself on what Christians's objections are to, well, choose a religion. For example, take some specific idea from Islam that Christians object to. For example, don't Muslims object to eating pork? Find out why Muslims object to it, and then find out why Christians believe it's acceptable. Then you'll have the larger view and you'll be prepared to talk to either side about what the other side believes.
  • thumb

    Gail .

    • 0
    Jan 7 2013: I live in South Carolina where Christians judge others solely on religious beliefs as well. But it's actually worse than that. They judge your solutions to major problems based solely on religious belief.

    The hate and arrogance in this part of the world would not make such an organization possible. It would be maligned and called dangerous. The more the fear in an area, the more maligned your organization will be.

    Yes, you can find some churches that will support you. (There are such organizations already, and you might want to join them and bring it into your area. They may be able to help you with start-up ideas). But these organizations have not been successful in being heard on a national scale because fundamentalist christians are not interested in the message. They prefer to see themselves as morally superior. They are not interested in educating themselves.
    • Jan 7 2013: That's just sad. I'm sorry your community is like that. I'm a Christian too, and that just embarrasses me. I'd like you to know that not all Christians aren't interested in being educated. There's some good ones too! Although I guess it's judgemental of me to say that too.
      • thumb

        Gail .

        • +1
        Jan 7 2013: I have spent a fair amount of time in 49 states. It's the fundamentalists who are so scary. There are nice Christians out there too - educated ones as well. But they largely stay silent and rarely seem to be willing to publicly address the atrocities inflicted on non-christians, women, homosexuals, orphans, and other groups, all in the name of their "God".

        Of all the religious states, I found Utah the friendliest. I thought that perhaps it was because they assumed everyone living there as Mormon, so I wasn't pre-judged until I declared my religion/politics, and they were found acceptable. Incredibly friendly and open!

        Religion rarely comes up in the Northeast, Northwest, and northern California. Same with Nevada, parts of Colorado, western Montana, Wisconsin (2nd friendliest) & Michigan. There it's considered a private matter between the person and their God.

        In the south, it's natural to introduce yourself and immediately ask what church you go to. It's a conversation starter. They see it as a way to "size you up". I see it as very threatening because if you don't go to a church (and I don't), word gets around and you are socially isolated.

        In my new community, I heard that many think I'm Pagan (because I don't go to church). (And not that I have anything against paganism. I find it very interesting.) The truth is that I actually revere the teachings of Jesus and discipline myself to follow them even when it's hard. But they don't know that because they haven't asked. Some have stopped walking their dogs down my street for fear that as a Pagan, I am a devil worshiper. Silly them! Such needless fear. If it's a god worth worshipping, don't you think that it should be potent enough to protect them from little old me? LOL

        Sigh.

        But I am glad that there are tolerant Christians. I haven't met one since moving here, but I have known many in other places. I wish they would get a voice