Indianapolis Interfaith Conversation Network: An Introduction
Indianapolis Interfaith Conversation Network: Community-building focused on relationship and peace through dialogue: A network of small-group conversation where friends confront their faith for individual learning and growth to benefit the community.
People desire authentic connection with their inner selves, with those around them, and with something bigger than themselves. We are a gathering of people who acknowledge this core & common desire.
The health of our network is defined by the strength of our relationships.
Peace through Dialogue
Relationship is the foundation and conversation is the framework. Each of us has a story, a unique lens through which we see the world, and this story shapes our attitudes, beliefs, and opinions. Sometimes our experiences are similar, often times they are not, but when we tell our stories we give each other the opportunity to identify our common experiences—whether many or few, and in-so doing we deepen our connection.
The health of our network is defined by the peacefulness and civility of our dialogue.
Network of Small-Groups
We are a society of numbers. Phone numbers, loyalty card numbers, credit card numbers, pants-size-numbers, numbers on a paycheck, numbers on the IPL bill, and so on. A small group has fewer numbers but more faces. One group of 20 people allows for deep relationships to grow; five groups of 20 people each expands an individual’s network to a hundred; while 20 groups of 20 people creates opportunities for 400 people to be mobilized for service and peace. We are building a network that is both intimate and impactive.
The health of our network is defined by the opportunity for any one individual to get involved and have the force of hundreds behind him or her.
Is God omnipotent? Is Jesus divine? Were all the generations of Israelites gathered at Sinai? Is there even a God at all? Is faith relevant? Can you be spiritual but not religious? Why are some folks so religious but act like such jerks? Have you been allowed to ask these questions?
Our conversations affirm something bigger than ourselves. Some may find this in patterned evolution, for others it is the feeling of connection to a personal creator, still others may fall in between the two ideas where they relate to the Divine as a guiding force in the universe, influencing goodness. The old adage is true: We think the question is more important than the answer.
The health of our network is defined by the quality of our questions.
We are not alone. (+1 from old-school Skully and Mulder fans) When we engage in conversation we change as individuals and we change those around us. A community is transformed through the actions of its members. Through our conversations we are creating a more tolerant and inclusive Indianapolis. Some weeks we will be thought leaders in the broader community, some weeks we will be a support network for those in our group, and other weeks we give our time as volunteers in support of a cause.
The health of our network is defined by the community benefit we provide.