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Religious Conversion - Your views (Page 2)

Sound IF-Rockerz

Joined: 18 November 2005
Posts: 5035

Posted: 21 March 2007 at 8:51pm | IP Logged

Originally posted by V.T.

Originally posted by Sound

I can't believe I just wrote a post that long. I am sorry for everyone who reads it. Tongue
u suck neetu. ill post mine tomorrowWink

Vicks, I have never known you to have read any post that had more than 2 linesLOL. For that matter I have never know you to write a post more than 2 lines eitherWink.

Will wait to read your views on this. I wonder what you think about this issue of religious conversion.... it is quite an interesting topic

souro Moderator

Joined: 27 January 2007
Posts: 8610

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 1:00am | IP Logged
Originally posted by Maya_M

We have seen how fast the missionaries have grown in India. They provide the best schools and charities and orphanages but the underlining is also propagates Christianity. Recently these conversions in some cities of Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka have aggravated people and they informed police. We have read about how poor in North East and Central India were influenced wit money and TV sets to convert.


My questions are


1.Should religious conversions be banned in India?

Yes they should be banned. Though in a democracy one should have the freedom to practice and preach his/ her own religion but freedom doesn't mean ignoring the greater common good, and in India religious conversion causes more harm than good. We all know that the Govt. doesn't stop the Church or the Maulvis from converting the tribes or the Hindus but when RSS tries to reconvert the convertees the Church and the Maulvis starts protesting and the Govt. comes down heavily on the RSS or whoever tried to do it.

It's also a known fact that most of the times the Church takes advantage of the gullibility of the tribes and converts them making false promises (much like the politicians). It also spells doom for the original tribal culture and they are made to adopt totally foreign practices sometimes against their wishes by instilling fear in them.

Another aspect is the amount of foreign funds that is siphoned off to India just to help the Church or the Maulvis in increasing the number of followers of their respective religion but since there is no accountability of how they use their funds they are often misused and sometimes in helping seditious operations.


2. What is a forced conversion?

The most obvious one is the practice of conversion by threatening violence. However, I would like to consider practices of brain washing, taking advantage of some people's gullible nature or creating an environment where the person concerned does not have any choice but to accept their religion also as forced conversion. Many times the Church gives employment to local people of different religion but pay them so less that they cannot support their family and then dangle the bait of promotion if they convert. Those people (mostly from rural areas) having no higher qualification doesn't hope for any other employment option and ultimately gives in. If that's correct then Indian corporate houses headed by Hindu owners can follow the same practice. Why should a person's pay be based on his/ her religion??


3. Is providing money and TV sets and basic needs and influencing people to convert a forced conversion?

As I said they sometimes act like politicians. They offer a gift as a sign of goodwill and promise them huge benefits on condition of conversion but once they convert all the promises are forgotten. If they are converting the people by promising something then they should be made to fulfill those promises or else action should be taken against them. And anyway aren't they citizen of India, then why should social activity or upliftment have a clause of religious conversion. When Hindu social workers go out to help in social activities do they ask the people of other religion to first convert to Hinduism before they can expect any help from them.


4. Orphanages run by missionaries convert every inmate to Christianity. Is it right?

Since, the child has to be given a religious affiliation and those taking care of it know only Christianity, so there's no problem with that. But it should be ensured the children of the orphanage are not exploited or pressurised to serve the Church or used as low waged servants which so often happens.


5. Govt. is planning to make religious reference compulsory in class 10th because some are converting to get job through reservation while applying to professional courses. What is your take on it?

No problem with it, will ensure fair play though IMO there should not be any reservation. And anyway I think a child's religious affiliation is recorded while taking admission in a school, so no problem at all if it's sent to the board before the 10th standard board exam.


Edited by souro - 22 March 2007 at 1:03am

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armana Goldie

Joined: 06 September 2006
Posts: 1040

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 6:06am | IP Logged

I am not a regular on this part of the forum but this seems like such an interesting discussion that i can't resist jumpimg in with my two cents worth. I do hope that it's allright to do so.

A very thought provoking post on an issue, which is very sensitive in india. and some well thought out replies too.
I would just like to add, that the basic problem, in my opinion is the divergent mature of the religions in question.

Islam and Christianity, like Judaism are religions of the Book. They are strictly monotheistic and the first two have a very, very strong emphasis on evangelical activities.

A religion like Hinduism, on the other hand is pluralistic with zero emphasis on evangelicalism.

There is thus an intrinsic cross purpose here.

Hindism extends itself to accept all religious practices, without seeking to convert and Christianity and Islam on the other hand view Hindus and tribals as 'pagans' who must be brought to the light and one true path.

The truth is that at the end of the day, i think there is nothing wrong if in the Orphanage they introduce the children to christianity. or even if people are moved to adopt a new faith. It's their choice and their right, but only if they are moved to do so because of faith and not monetary or reservation considerations.

on the other hand i find myself recoiling instinctively from the assumptions under lying so much of the conversion attempts: that we the idol worshipers need to see the true light and true way.

This, to me, reeks of cultural imperialism and is deeply insulting.
Who are you to judge my gods and pass pronouncements on them? If you truly respect all religions, as so many of these converts profess and claim, then respect my religion enough to not assume that i need to 'saved.'

Ok, that was a long post. I do hope i haven't bored those who read it. And more importantly, i have not offended anyone. These are my my personal opinions and are in no way intended to disrespect or insult anyone or any religion.


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armana Goldie

Joined: 06 September 2006
Posts: 1040

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 6:06am | IP Logged

Edited by armana - 22 March 2007 at 6:07am
cool_pooja IF-Sizzlerz

Joined: 22 January 2005
Posts: 12751

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 7:00am | IP Logged
Originally posted by Maya_M


1.Should religious conversions be banned in India?

No because if someone wants to belief something its thier right and it shudnt be taken away from him or her.


2. What is a forced conversion?

When someone is insisting you to change your religion only for the sake of increasing followers of a certain religion. Usually poor people are forced to convert by giving them some money.


3. Is providing money and TV sets and basic needs and influencing people to convert a forced conversion?

For the poor ones who cant afford the basic needs of life, yes.


4. Orphanages run by missionaries convert every inmate to Christianity. Is it right?

I dunt think they do.


5. Govt. is planning to make religious reference compulsory in class 10th because some are converting to get job through reservation while applying to professional courses. What is your take on it?

I dunt really know abt since i dunt live in India.

Garf Senior Member

Joined: 07 June 2006
Posts: 702

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 8:04am | IP Logged

Thanks Armana for letting me know about this discussion...I would like to contribute as well towards it as I feel very strongly about conversion too. Though I am hindu, my mum's side of the family are roman catholics and from a very young age a lot of effort has gone into influencing me about not following hinduism. The logic behind it we don't follow a set of rules, hence we don't know how to reach god. The only way I can reach god is of course through Christanity. Even today when I visit a church during Christmas, I often here the father propagating about the goodness of Christanity over other religions. And they openly state that their main purpose is evangelism.

And I really wonder where does the thought of religious tolerance then disappear. My aunt doesn't fail to remind me how I become holy after visiting the church and how my prayers get answered quickly if I worship a particular saint on a particular given day. Usually the opinion is Hinduism is full of idol worship and superstitions. However in Christanity too one worships the various idols, which are usually referred to as Statues.

This reminds me of a very famous thought which Vivekananda once said. According to him irrespective of any religion whenever we worship we try to form a certain image in our minds. Whether we look up at the clouds or whether we form a mental image in our minds, in order to concentrate we do tend to look towards a particular image and if this image isn't idol worship, then what is.

The second belief Hinduism is superstitious also doesn't hold in Christanity, it is commonly believed some of the people possess the holy spirit and through which they can cure people and remove misery from people's life. If this ain't a superstitious belief, then I don't know what else can be the description of superstition.

Okay sorry for having rambled too much...but I for one am really against conversion unless and until the person really feels strongly about a certain belief and feels that's the only way to reach God.

Our ultimate aim is to reach God, however Christians and Islam do take the ownership of making sure they convert as many people as possible to their religions cuz the tolerance level is usually not as high as it is in Hinduism. But they often forget Hinduism has been the oldest religion in this world and history has proved that and no amount of forcefullness will ever wipe out Hinduism...

Sorry guys for rambling away soooo much but this is something I really feel strongly about...


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simz99 Goldie

Joined: 08 May 2006
Posts: 1147

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 8:25am | IP Logged
Well said Armana and Garf! I totally agree that religious conversion is a practise that offends me personally because I do believe that all religions are but a path to reach the one goal. Every path may be different but all are headed in the same direction. A person may convert to another religion through his/her own choice but something that is forced ad nauseum is totally unacceptable.
Live and let live!
...M... IF-Sizzlerz

Joined: 20 October 2006
Posts: 21639

Posted: 22 March 2007 at 1:07pm | IP Logged

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