International Intercultural Inter religious Programme
“Religion, Politics and Philosophy: Points of Encounter with India”
Ecumenical Christian Centre
The Ecumenical Christian Centre (ECC) was established in 1963 by the late Rev. Dr. M.A. Thomas, with a farsighted vision to promote “the unity of humankind.” ECC offers space for all persons, religious, secular and atheists to gather and engage in dialogues on moral and ethical values and for social change and harmony. It is located in Whitefield, the cradle of Bengaluru’s IT industry. ECC is an eco-friendly campus, guests who came to ECC has a memorable experience of its greenery, cleanliness and welcoming attitude of the inmates. In its sylvan campus of 29 acres, ECC has facilities to accommodate about 150 people, with excellent facilities for seminar, workshops, dialogues and conferences. Also we organize 15 days stay cum experience course, “Matrix of Cultures and Religions of India” for a group of 30-40 participants from abroad every year in the months of July and August.
Inter-Cultural and Religious Studies
Ecumenical Christian Centre offers a month course on Religion, Politics and Philosophy with a vision to promote global peace and harmony.
In this globalised world, cultures and religions are on the move as individuals and communities migrate leading to the co-existence of multi-cultures and religions which form the foundation for global peace and harmony. Lack of knowledge about other cultures and religions often lead to suspicion and prejudices which subsequently breed intolerance and escalating to violent conflicts often played by politics and desire for grabbing power. Hence, it is important and necessary to promote religious and cultural literacy in order to eradicate prejudices and presuppositions about the other cultures and other religions and to build social harmony and global peace. However, this epistemological process is to be complemented with praxis since rational explanations are limited and it can only be transcended at an experiential level. Therefore, this programme is arranged so that people may be able to understand the religiosity and cultural variance of different religious and cultural traditions by exposing themselves to the incredible experience of diversity, yet united with a deep sense of spiritual heritage and ethos. India has a wealth of religions that have been evolved here and as well migrated. Hinduism is the foundational religion and Buddhism came as a reformation while Jainism remained alone with its austerity practices. Sikhism was an integration of Hinduism and Islam which came into existence in the 18th century. Judaism, Christianity, Parsi and Islam also came to India and integrated with Indian culture. Sufism evolved out of the Islam’s encounter with Hinduism. New religious movements are as well find impetus in the contemporary India often led by Gurus which compete with each other.
A one month course on Religion, Politics, Philosophy:
- To promote global peace and harmony.
- To facilitate interreligious experience (by attending Tibetan Buddhist Prayer Service, Sikh Gurudwara Prayer Service, Puja in Hindu Temple, Jain Prayer Service, ISCKCON Temple Worship, etc).
- To facilitate cultural and religious exposures at different religious centres in India, which is known to be the cradle of religions and spirituality.
- To experience different Christian traditions ( witnessing Thomas Christian Traditions, Syro Malabar Traditions, Syro Malankara Traditions, Jacobite, Orthodox, and Marthoma Traditions, Indian Jewish Traditions, Church of South India and North India Traditions).
- Experiencing the dance,musical,culnary and aesthetic manifestations of India.
- To foster the unity,oneness and fellowship of humankind.
- To understand the diverse philosophy underpinning in Hinduism and Buddhism.
- To examine the dynamics played by power, politics and violence in religious clashes beginning from the Partition till today.
Lectures incorporated with Contextual Visits such as Buddhist Vihara, Hindu Temples, Mosque, Churches, Jain Temples, participating in rituals and celebrations, visiting villages. . .
Lectures on various fields by experts from respective religions:
- Indian Religions: An Overview-Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism and Zoroastranism.
- Indian Politics – A Historical Analysis
- History of Religious Tolerance and Violence
- The Great Books of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism
- Hindu Philosophy: The Six Systems
- Buddhist Schools of thought – Hinayana, Mahayana, Vajrayana.
- Tantra in Hindusim and Buddhism
- Yoga as an integration of Indian Ethos
- Cultures and Spiritual Traditions of India- A Historical and Political Overview.
- Political Landscape and Development of Religious flareups
- Religious Spirituality- A Necessity for Global Managers.
- The Cultural Matrix of India-Indian Christianity and its Integration with the Indian Culture.
- Indian Dance and Arts forms
- Christian Art and its Integration with the Hindu and Tribal Culture.
- Casteism and the Struggle of the Untouchables.
- Islam and Sufism
- Islam and Women
- Women and their Struggle
- Folklore and Religious Cults
- Neo Religious Movements
- Functioning of Indian Government System – Visit to the Karnataka Legislative Assembly and Interaction with Ministers
- Ayurveda for a happy, healthy life
- India’s Struggle for Independence and Gandhian Peace Studies.
- Ecology and Indian Religions
- Moring and Evening: Yoga and Martial Arts Training
Pilgrimage: Experiencing Important Religious and Cultural Centres of India-led by experts.
South India: Hampi, Belur, Halebid, Sravanabalagola, Mysore, Madurai – Meenakshi Temple, Mahabalipuram, Kerala Back Waters, 10th Century Jewish Synagogue in Kochi, Goan Beaches and Churches, etc.
Prof. Fr. Dr. Mathew Chandrankunnel, CMI
Ecumenical Christian Centre
Post Bag 11, Whitefield
Tel: (+91) – 80-2845 3158/80-2845 2270/80-2845 2653
Mobile: +91 9447881469 / +91 9483501416