Presentation on theme: "Does this question imply that the type of Christianity we have been taught has not incorporated the teaching on Justice as found in the Christian Traditions."— Presentation transcript:
Does this question imply that the type of Christianity we have been taught has not incorporated the teaching on Justice as found in the Christian Traditions and the Bible?
The ideas or human knowledge of anytime naturally get influenced and even conditioned by its historical context.
‘Salvation’ Salvation is received after ‘death’ or not while on earth but in the ‘world to come’ or in ‘heaven’. ‘Soul’ The soul has to be saved because it is the ‘soul’ which receives salvation and not the body. ‘Sin’ Sin is what pollutes the soul. Sins take place in our personal life. Souls can be saved from sin through confessing your sins to the priest or by receiving the last sacrament from the priest. Church Salvation is not possible outside the Church. Anything outside the Church is devilish or superstitious.
It was later after the former colonies received independence that their realities influenced the local and indigenous theologians who were from the victimized countries or the periphery countries, discovered from their perspectives what the Bible is teaching to them.
People were influenced by the ideologies of the independent movements. They began to appreciate the local cultures, their own dignity as a people, nostalgic past. People developed also self respect. There was a new political awareness growing among the local populations.
People began to review critically their realities with their own perspectives as victims living in the periphery. People realized that the causes for their sufferings are not the ‘Will of God’ or ‘Fate’ but the unjust socio, economic and political structures. They studied the Bible from the perspective of their own social and political realities.
What message do you receive from these texts. What issues do they raise for the faithful?
Concern for the neighbor. The need to protect the weaker ones. Wages of the workers. Life and Possessing of Land. Justice to the alien and fatherless, widows.
Basic needs of people. Charging high interests and possessing goods of the neighbors. Building palaces with profits earned through exploitation of workers. Cause of the oppressed. Food to the hungry.
Justice to the Poor. Woe to those who make unjust laws, who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless. Important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness.
To know and Love God means doing justice to the poor and oppressed, to establish just relationships among people, it is to recognize the rights of the poor. What God of Yahweh looks for is not rituals or offerings.
Peace is, above all, a result of Just Social Order; Peace is one of the fruits of the Spirit, a natural by product of being in harmony with God, or a result of being in right relationship with God. Where there is Just Social Order Human beings can fulfill themselves as human beings. Factors characterize the Christian concept of peace:
Their dignity is respected, Their legitimate aspirations can be satisfied, Where access to truth is recognized, Where personal freedom is guaranteed.
Where a person is not an object, but an agent of his own history. Therefore, peace is not mere absence of violence and bloodshed. Peace is a Continuous Process. It is not established once and for all but a result of continuous effort and adaptation to new circumstances, to new demands and challenges of a changing history.
A process that implies both the constant change in socio political structures and transformation of attitudes and conversion of hearts. A static and apparent peace may be obtained with use of force; but an authentic peace implies a continuous struggle for a just Social Order.
There can be no peace without justice. Peace is not mere absence of war. Peace is a result of Just Social Order or Just relationships among people. All genuine peace lovers have to enter into the struggle of working towards just social order.
It is God’s creation. According to Genesis, it was found to be ‘good’. The letter to Romans speaks that the whole creation is groaning to reach its fulfillment in future. It is meant for the benefit of all humankind and not only for a few. Humankind is called not to load-over it but be at the service of creation to bring it to fulfillment.
is due to human desire/ craving. Lack of the spirit of ‘Alpechchata’, non - attachment. The unjust social order allows a few to acquire a major portion of the world’s resources meant for all. Creation is meant that its resources are to be shared among all and not just for a few.
Buddha has commanded his followers to share all things ‘even the morsel of good falling into the begging bowl’. Mahathma Gandhi once said world has enough resources to satisfy the needs of all human kind, but not their greed. Therefore the Environmental Crisis has to be seen as a Justice Issue, an issue of unjust social order.
Environmental crisis is a result of ‘Profit’ oriented development. Profit is the Priority and People have been ignored. Purpose of such development is maximization of profits in a shortest possible of time. Profit oriented development is motivated by human greed and acquisitiveness and not by any desire to serve humans.
To increase and maximize profits, production also has to be increased causing exploitation of earths resources to the maximum. Once produced, propaganda on products have to be made using modern technologies and spreading lies and myths among people. Thus, when demands increase, more pressures have to be accelerated on the eco-system to extract more resources. This process is causing massive destruction to limited natural environment.
Human Beings are not masters over creation but its servants. The protection of environment can be realized only if we make an option for a more humane or ‘a people centred model of development’. In view of that there is urgent need for adoption of a new spirituality based non acquisitive values cultivated in the Asian context.
Human Rights implies that all human beings have dignity. Every human being has a calling to attain ‘Fullness of Life’, which means development of all his / her capacities to the full. Physical / Intellectual / emotional needs have to be fulfilled. Food / Freedom / Human love / Education
Denial of that opportunity is a violation of respect for dignity. Violations happen due to sinful / unjust structures / unjust social order. Human rights cannot be realized without eliminating such structures or social order. Upholding human rights necessarily means joining the struggle for liberation and establishing a Just Social Order.
God is supreme. His Kingdom is open to all beings. We need to recognize God’s redemptive work in all other Faiths. The state of human suffering caused by ‘mammon worship’ and greed and life of acquisitiveness is a challenge to the members of all Faiths.
Working towards a Just Social Order and fighting against mammon and acquisitiveness is a common agenda acceptable to all faiths. It is a common agenda on which members of all faiths could closely collaborate. The working for Kingdom demands that we are called to be only servants and not masters or owners of the Kingdom.
The problem arises: When we begin to compete among ourselves for supremacy. When we begin to recruit members for our ‘clubs’ or institutions and not for His Kingdom. Therefore ‘servant spirituality’ is a must for those wanting to collaborate with others.