(I put this article in the Non-Catholic Religions forum, since it deals with non-Christian and Christian ideas intermixed somewhat. The article is from Christianity Today, Vol. 51, No. 5, May 2007.)
*Multinational businessman and politician Ram Gidoomal talks about ‘translating’ the gospel in today’s world.
*Interview by Andy Crouch | posted 4/27/2007 08:29AM
You come from a Hindu religious background and attended Muslim schools in Africa, yet you became a follower of Jesus during your studies at university.
At the university, I was out of the family context, with the need for something that could make sense of the wider world in which I found myself. I started reading about Jesus. I was intrigued by the strong basis for his historical existence.
In my cultural context, the biggest religious problem is your karma: your karmic debt. What you sow, you reap. You come to this earth with a karmic account, then you die and you’re reincarnated, and that depends on how you’ve done in this life. When I read about Jesus’ death on the Cross, it wasn’t so much the sacrifice for sin that struck me as the sacrifice for karma. The Christians I met spoke of sin in this life, but that was meaningless to me. Karma was what mattered. So I decided, When they talk about sin, I think of karma, and I believe Jesus died for my karma, so I am going to accept him on those terms.
In the end, I’ve found I’ve been able to use my skills in business to help start some of these translations. We’ve produced a series of books and cds that connect with the South Asian experience. Fortunately, I was able to pay for publication, because in the early days, not many Christian publishers were willing to take on a book that talked about Jesus as the bodhisattva who fulfilled his dharma to pay for my karma to negate samsara and achieve nirvana!