Australians’ Non-Confrontational Disposition

Relativism, although not nearly as cutting edge of a topic as it used to be, is still a massive problem. I’ve been teaching in Victoria, Australia this past week. My friend (and local pastor) here has been telling me that Australians have a very non-confrontational disposition. Relativism, he says, plays very well into this desire to avoid arguing with others. When you don’t want to disagree with someone about your religious convictions, it’s a lot easier to think, I have my belief and they have their belief, so let’s just leave it at that. There’s no need to tell them what you believe, make people feel uncomfortable, or, worse, begin a quarrel.

That’s why my pastor friend wasn’t at all surprised to read the recent Barna study that found 47% of Christian millennials think it’s wrong to share their faith with someone of a different faith. Ironically, the same group believed they were gifted at sharing their faith more than any other group (Gen X, Boomers, or Elders).

Although the study was conducted in the United States, my friends here in Australia are quick to point out that their culture—in this particular way—mimics trends in the United States.

Alan Shlemon

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