What happens when persons of faith and non-believers, or skeptics, talk to each other? The common outcome of such circumstances is familiar to most of us. Whether the conversationalists are people of faith or atheists or agnostics, all too often their primary objective is to spout what they believe to be superior theories and discount what the other has to say and to prove they are right. This is the problem with interfaith diologue: most people are quick to talk about their beliefs in a sort of manner which they consider superior than others'.
Interfaith diologue is problematic in this community because of the preconceptions people carry into these discussions, and nobody is exempt from it. It is natural that we will all be, in some way or another, biased towards our own opinion, but what we must remember is that the sharing of knowledge through communication is how we relate to each other and can better understand each other. It should not matter what beliefs another individual posseses because we do not have to be interested or agree with them to understand where they are coming from.
In the Central Indiana community, for example, there is a heavy Christian influence towards daily life and there would be nothing wrong with this if they all respected those who are unsure of the reality and identity of a superior being and vis versa. What is difficult about this aspect of the community we live in is that this religious dynamic has created a polorized community. It is imoprtant for people to believe in something, but the dangerousness of this scenario is that they completely dismiss varying theories.
What each of us should take from differeing religious stances is that we learn and understand things through communication and that through this we can become a more accepting community that doesn't get scared or afraid when encountering contrasting arguments. Paying attention to what each has to say about religion does not automatically make us part their religious beliefs, but it will allow us to live in a more pleasant society.