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  • The Emerging Dalit Theology: A Historical Appraisal – Religion Online.
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The Apostles. Flying Together -Vol 1:Roots and Wings. Theology of Paul. Cosmos, the Body of God. Heaven and Hell. Created in the Image of God. A Critical Look at Dispensation Theologies. Symbology of Biblical Numbers. As a result, many Dalits are impoverished, uneducated and illiterate. Dalits have been oppressed, culturally subjugated and politically marginalized. It is the dominant caste-people brought globalization to India.

And so, the victims of globalization are Dalits, who are already the victims of the caste system. Today the three-fold problem - inferior social status, political powerlessness and economic poverty have become the part of the inner being of Dalits and they have accepted this as part of their natural life. This caste system became a fixed and hereditary with the emergence of Hinduism and its beliefs of pollution and rebirth. Manusmitri Laws of Manu preach the sanctity of the principles of gradation and rank. Manusmitri undoubtedly legitimizes this social exclusion and introduces absolute inequality as the guiding principle of social relations.

Dalit Christians is also experiencing in the same as the other religion do.

Dalits thought that if they become Christians, they would be able to claim the ladder in caste system but not so. The separation of Dalit Christians is also explicit in the Church gatherings. The priests has to unite people but never worry about this discrimination and carry on their work in the church. Theology only discussed but these do not address the issues faced by the Dalits in their daily life created by caste base oppression. Theologians interested in Dalits empowerment and wished to respond to the living context of Dalits. Dalit theology emerged to respond to the living context of the Dalits.

Dalit theology has attempted to instruct Dalits about their pathetic living conditions and taking Jesus the 1 By Br. The Church and other organizations should incorporate matters concerning Dalit empowerment in their extracurricular activities. They should educate more Dalits to join the struggle for empowerment. Many non- Brahmins and many Dalit leaders of the country slowly started to fight the untouchability either individually or in groups.

Ambedkar, who was the master mind behind the Indian Constitution, committed himself completely to provide better future for the Dalits in India with certain rules and regulations favouring their empowerment. Hence, he said that eradication of untouchability demands the abolition of caste system in India. Likewise, in many ways he brought a wave of revolution in Dalits struggle for liberty, equality, peace and justice.

Rape is used as a weapon in the caste war. Raping Dalit women is seen as a way of humiliating Dalit men. Experiments are done on the bodies of Dalit women. Dalit women due to poverty are also forced to become temple prostitutes or devadasis. They are the most despised and least respected. Church must feel obligatory to work for the liberation of Dalit women.

M.M. Thomas: Theological Signposts for the Emergence of Dalit Theology

The Churches must positively promote the education of Dalit girls and bring change. Through these, we can raise the life situation of Dalit women to a new horizon, to a better zone filled with joy, peace and equality. Conclusion: Ambedkar who spearheaded the Dalit revolutionary movement to envisage bright future for Dalits in India. Theologians in Christianity, realizing the pathetic life situation of Dalits have contributed a lot towards Dalit liberation.

People of good will from various parts of India have also joined this contest, so that the downtrodden Dalits may ascertain their human rights and human dignity. The fight is not over. Still, the oppression and exploitation of Dalits is widespread in many parts of India. Therefore, the fight against this evil which dehumanizes the Dalits has to travel long way to provide better life for the Dalits. We must educate the Dalits to become aware of their glorious past and their present oppression and invite them to struggle hard for their liberation.

The awakened Dalits should emerge as a movement and the movement should awaken more and more Dalits for empowerment. Non-Dalits too have got a specific role to play in Dalit empowerment. Dalit theology is to create an egalitarian society where everyone is treated equally and gets equal opportunities to grow. Dalits believe that Jesus' approach and attitude towards them and the Samaritans, the dalits of his day has demonstrated that Jesus loved and cared for the Dalits.

How do we deal with these hesitations of many Dalit communities, especially those in urban areas? Dalits also share the common space — ecclesial as well as hermeneutical — with others.

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In the vast and diverse Indian society, every community contains people with multiple social identities and gets to hear a variety of theological perspectives and biblical interpretations. Perhaps preachers first need to be helped to see the usefulness of reflecting theologically from a Dalit perspective. Furthermore, we also need to ask to what extent theology, theological trends, or issues of people and life, aside from Dalit struggles and Dalit theology, inspire the churches in India.

For Dalit theology to be relevant to Dalit praxis, mere preaching is not enough; social teaching is also needed. The Roman Catholic churches offer social teaching to their congregations, but the Protestant and evangelical churches do not. The only teaching available from these churches is in the form of preaching, and this usually is taken up by the traditional agenda of helping people to cope with guilt and pain, suffering and disappointment, and to feel good and positive amid hard realities of injustice and abuse.

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Dalit Theology and Dalit Liberation: Problems, Paradigms and Possibilities. By Peniel Rajkumar

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