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Australia is a multi cultural country consisting of a vast array of ethnically and consistently varied peoples, permitting benefits for Australian society. However, it can pose a prospective difficulty to social harmony and cohesion because to one faith the concept of what is afraid or crucial may contrast totally with another. Interfaith discussion is therefore an effective approach for avoiding such clashes.
It is a movement intended towards promoting and comprehending different spiritual customs, and to clear up any misconceptions or conflicts.
Though debate and argument can be a problem, it is not what it aims to promote, Wendy Wilkie, an Uniting church Delegate specified” … many Christians and Muslims would see the only reason you speak to someone of another faith is to transform them to your own …” which is why these discussions can be hard.
The four principles of Dialogue are; it begins when people meet each other, depends on mutual understanding and trust, makes it possible to share in service to the community and Dialogue becomes the medium of authentic witness.
These principles are all effective and vital to help sustain peace between religions in such a multi-faith country, and therefore Inter-faith Dialogue is of great importance in Australia.
A large number of Inter faith initiatives have taken place in Australia; an example is the Australian National Dialogue of Christians, Muslims and Jews, beginning in March 2003 aiming to provide opportunities for these faiths to build understanding and to clarify contentious issues with their respective faiths. Since the amount of religious diversity in Australia is so great, the importance of discussion and resolution through Inter-Faith dialogue is crucial, as clashes between these faiths is an inevitable reality.
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