By: Jacob Erikson
“Love is a political force. It is the greatest political idea.”
This bold statement was made by Vishal Mangalwadi in his recent interview with John Anderson on his Conversations series.
Vishal Mangalwadi is one of a growing number of philosophers reclaiming the centrality of the Bible for understanding the West. In this conversation with John, he covers some of the ways the Bible has made our modern world.
Mangalwadi is well placed to notice the Bible’s contributions to society, which arrived in India through British colonization. He argues that some of the greatest human goods we now take for granted, like medicine, education, nationhood and legal equality, were no accident but a direct result of the Bible. He highlights the work of early Christian missionaries like William Carey, who dedicated their lives to humanitarian ideals like the abolition of sati (widow-burning) or establishing schools across India, motivated by the command to ‘Love thy neighbour’. Mangalwadi compares this ethic with Buddhist wisdom, which calls its followers to transcend suffering by avoiding becoming attached to people.
At its worst the wisdom of Eastern religion can descend into simple racism, as with the untouchable caste in Hinduism. Mangalwadi claims Hinduism weakened India, dividing it “socially, politically and religiously”, while Christianity laid the groundwork for an Indian national identity and democracy in modern India.
Vishal Mangalwadi is an Indian philosopher and social reformer who has lectured in over 40 countries, published seventeen books (including The Book That Made Your World), and contributed to many more. Ever since he found the religion where “God has revealed Truth in his Word and works”, he has dedicated his life to a blend of study, charity work, public speaking and church support, in both India and America.
John Anderson served as Deputy Prime Minister of Australia from 1999 to 2005. A committed Christian, John now hosts a podcast where he interviews various thought leaders from around the world on topics as varied as politics, culture, academia and faith. John is motivated by a desire to encourage open and honest discussion of important issues so that we can, as a society, reach the best possible outcomes for as many people as possible.
Watch their full interview here
Article supplied with thanks to JohnAnderson.net.au.