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30.04.2018 10:19 Alter: 50 days

Dual-Religious Belonging in Hinduism and Christianity

Conference Announcement

Theme: Dual-Religious Belonging in Hinduism and Christianity
Type: Interdisciplinary Conference
Institution: Faculty of Divinity, University of Cambridge
Location: Cambridge (United Kingdom)
Date: 3.–4.7.2018

An increasingly visible socio-religious feature of some western, and
more specifically British, cultural spheres is the practice of
cultivating forms of affiliation to more than one religious
tradition. Especially in the case of individuals from Christian, and
occasionally Jewish, religious backgrounds, we find attempts to
interweave forms of Eastern religions into their broadly Abrahamic
horizons of belief and practice. These modulations of the ‘Eastward
turn’ over the last few decades or so, which have generated contested
hybrids such as ‘Christian yoga’, ‘Christian mindfulness’, and so on,
could be dismissed on the grounds that they are shaped by, and hence
also contaminated by, the inherited cultural trajectories of European
fascination with the exoticised Orient. Thus, it might be claimed
that Christians who are looking to the wisdom-based traditions of
Hinduism are uncritically repeating older Orientalist strategies for
culturally appropriating what the West desperately needs from the
romanticised East.

From a slightly different perspective, there are also complex
philosophical-theological questions relating to truth-claims made by
the different spiritual traditions which have often become part of
the sociological smorgasbord in urban locations such as London,
Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Bradford, Luton, Slough, Leicester,
and elsewhere. The metaphysical presuppositions of certain forms of
Vedantic Hinduism cannot always be readily translated into
Jewish-Christian doctrines, idioms, and vocabularies, and,
conversely, certain Jewish-Christian experiences may not resonate
powerfully with some Indic sensibilities. Therefore, hybrid
descriptions of ‘Hindu-Christian’ could seem, at worst, to be logical
contradictions, and, at best, to be passing fads on the religious

We are bringing together academics who will speak on the theme of
dual religious belonging, especially in the cases of Hinduism and
Christianity, by using the analytical tools of philosophy, theology,
cultural studies, anthropology, to present their theoretical
reflections on, and their personal engagements with, themes relating
to living in and with more than one religious worldview.

Confirmed speakers:

Mario Aguilar
Elisabeth Arweck
Michael Barnes SJ
Ankur Barua
Gavin D'Costa
Manuela Kalsky
Martin Ganeri OP
Jeffery Long
Eleanor Nesbitt
Nadya Pohran
Daniel Soars
Peter Tyler

To register, please email:

Audience space is limited so we ask that you only register if you are
sure you will attend.

For more information please visit:


Nadya Pohran & Daniel Soars
Faculty of Divinity
University of Cambridge
West Road
Cambridge, CB3 9BS
United Kingdom