The Calgary Conference on Hindu-Christian Dialogue in September 1987, at which the idea of this bulletin was conceived, brought people together who came from places as distant as Hong Kong and Madras, Hamilton and Winnipeg, Kansas City and New York, Tokyo and Santiniketan, Waterloo and Geneva, Edmonton and Regina. Most of the participants had met before somewhere else -- very often in places very far from Calgary. All the Easterners present had lived for extended periods in the west, all the Westerners had been to the East -- some for many years. While the participants of this meeting may not have been typical for just any group of people meeting in conference at Calgary, they did typically represent the kind of cosmopolitanism connected with gatherings on interreligious dialogue. The conference topic "Hindu-Christian Dialogue" assigned roles to some as "Christians" and to others as "Hindus". But all those present were aware that these were fairly artificial boundaries. "Hindu-Christian Dialogue" is part of a wider interreligious dialogue which again is symptomatic for an era of increasing physical and mental mobility of intellectuals. If, for instance, I were asked to describe my cultural or religious identity to an outsider I would be hard pressed to come up with an answer that would make sense to a person who has never left his or her hometown and never been to a church but the one s/he was baptized in.
"Viewpoints: Dialogue in the Modern West,"
Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies:
Vol. 1, Article 8.
Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.7825/2164-6279.1008