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Indianization & Spiritualization of Christianity

Acharyasri Dr. Sachidananda Bharathi Acharyasri Dr. Sachidananda Bharathi
20 Jun 2022
It has taken almost four decades of study, reflection, prayer and experiments for us to develop the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ based on the two foundational constituents of ‘Unbound Christ’ and ‘Open Christianity’.

The ‘Indian Christian Day,’ being observed on July 3 every year from 2021, will have two far-reaching effects on Christianity in India. Firstly, it will help establish a distinct identity for the Christian religion in our country. Secondly, it will help to liberate Christianity in India from its colonial vestige and establish it as an initiative of a direct disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ, St. Thomas the Apostle, who reached India in 52 AD, and whose martyrdom day is now being observed and celebrated as ‘Indian Christian Day’. 

Christians in India can be proud of this newfound apostolic legacy. I am grateful to the initiators of this new Christian identity. The occasion of Indian Christian Day has also served as the ‘Foundation Day’ for the promotion of ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith,’ which has been the mission of my ‘second life’ that began with a miraculous escape from death in an air crash in 1982. I was a serving Squadron Leader of the Indian Air Force at that time. 

Our Vision and Mission

Encountering Christ personally in my life for the first time in 1982, while admitted in the Air Force Hospital, Bengaluru, after the serious air accident, became the ‘turning point’ in my life. I was given a vision and a mission for my ‘second life’. The vision was that of a ‘Dharma Rajya’ of love, unity, peace and joy on earth. This was the vision of the Kingdom of God on earth initiated by the Divine Master himself. The one and only mission of his disciples has been to reinterpret this vision of the Kingdom of God afresh and anew from age to age and from place to place, and realize it in their own lives and in their own time-space milieu. 

For me the ‘call’ and ‘mandate’ has been to work to realize the vision of a ‘Dharma Rajya’ in the multi-religious and multi-cultural milieu of India, our motherland, through an ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ to be promoted without religious conversion and cultural alienation. 

I personally was totally inadequate and unprepared to take up such a mission. But the living Spirit of the crucified and risen Christ was there to guide us. Divine Providence has also brought into my life gurus and co-workers from different religious traditions in India. My background as a former IAF officer also became a blessing in disguise for me in this mission.

Indianization & Spiritualization of Christianity

It is felt by some of us that ‘Indianization & Spiritualization of Christianity’ will be the ‘second stage’ in the redemptive mission of our Lord Jesus Christ on earth. The first stage in the redemptive mission of our Lord was ‘Romanization & Institutionalization of Christianity’.

This first stage seems to have come to an end with the COVID-19 pandemic. Now we are called to begin a new stage for the Christian Faith in the world. This second stage will require a five-fold foundation if it is to fulfill its destined mission in the divine plan: 

Firstly, it will need an ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ based on the two foundational constituents of ‘Unbound Christ’ and ‘Open Christianity’.

Secondly, it will need an ‘Ecumenical Task Force’ of disciples of Sadguru Jesus Christ, who are consecrated to God for promoting the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ all over India and the world without religious conversion and cultural alienation. 

Thirdly, it will need an Interreligious Organization for the Integral Renaissance of India built on the strong foundation of the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’. 

Fourthly, the Interreligious Organization for the Integral Renaissance of India will need an Interreligious Movement for a ‘culture of love, peace and sustainable development’ to provide a strong eco-spiritual foundation for the Integral Renaissance of India. 

And fifthly, the Interreligious Organization & its Interreligious Movement will need a ‘World Peace Center’ to serve as their International Headquarters & Coordinating Center. 

It has taken almost four decades of study, reflection, prayer and experiments for us to develop the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ based on the two foundational constituents of ‘Unbound Christ’ and ‘Open Christianity’. In addition to these two foundational constituents, the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ also consists of: 

1.    An interreligious ‘Prabhu Parameshwar’ theology

2.    An advaitic ‘Sadguru’ Christology

3.    An inclusive ‘Dharma Rajya’ missiology

4.    A liberative ‘Sahana Yoga’ spirituality

5.    A ‘Dharmodaya’ philosophy of peace

6.    A ‘Tyagarchana’ ideology of love

7.    Five principles of ‘enlightened Christian leadership’

8.    Three appropriate ‘Christian mission methodologies’

9.    A ‘Peace of Christ meditation’ 

10.    A five-fold way of ‘fruitful Christian life’

We have also initiated over these decades an Ecumenical Task Force of disciples of Sadguru Jesus Christ termed ‘Christusishya Shanti Sangham’ (CSS), which is consecrated to God for promoting the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ all over India and the world without religious conversion and cultural alienation; an Interreligious Organization termed ‘Dharma Rajya Vedi’ (DRV) for the Integral Renaissance of India based on the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’; and an Interreligious Movement termed ‘Tyagarchana Shanti Mission’ (TSM) for a culture of love, peace and sustainable development in the pandemic-devastated world and to provide a strong eco-spiritual foundation for the Integral Renaissance of India.

I have also outlined the vision and mission of a World Peace Center in my book titled ‘Viswa Shanti Peetam,’ which was released on October 14, 2021, by Sri. Arif Mohammad Khan, the Hon. Governor of Kerala, at Gandhi Park, Thiruvananthapuram. 

My new book titled ‘An Indian Face of the Christian Faith,’ which is being published by ISPCK, contains the outlines of these five components of the historic mission of ‘Indianization & Spiritualization of Christianity’. This book is being released first in Mumbai on July 8, 2022. Thereafter, it will also be released in Delhi and other places.

We also needed a starting point, a ‘Foundation Day’ for the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’. July 3, 2022 is adopted by us as that much-needed ‘Foundation Day’. Thanks to the promoters and organizers of the ‘Indian Christian Day’.

‘Navasrushti Bhavan’: A Home for the Founder-members of CSS

A ‘Navasrushti Bhavan’ is proposed to be built within our Dharma Bharathi Ashram campus in a plot of 65 cents of land, given as ‘Tyagarchana’ to the Ashram by the late Ms. Prisca Vanissery, an America-returned nurse, to accommodate the founder-members of Christusishya Shanti Sangham. The CSS will constitute an ‘Ecumenical Task Force’ of visionary-missionary disciples of Lord Jesus Christ, who are inspired to join hands in the historic mission of rebuilding the pandemic-devastated world inspired by ‘An Indian Face of the Christian Faith’. 

The foundation stone for the proposed ‘Navasrushti Bhavan’ was unveiled by my esteemed friend Sri. Arif Mohammad Khan, the Hon. Governor of Kerala, on September 25, 2019, during his visit to the Ashram, soon after he became the Governor of this State. But the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic forced us to hold the project in abeyance. It is being prayerfully revived now. The proposed ‘Navasrushti Bhavan’ will accommodate 12 ‘founder-members’ of the CSS to promote the ‘Indian Face of the Christian Faith’ without religious conversion and cultural alienation. 

This could be a starting point of the second stage of the Lord’s redeeming work which is ‘Indianization & Spiritualization of Christianity’, beginning with and from India. 

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