Inspired by Heading East: Kami in India and our place in Head, Heart & Hands: Bringing Together Christian Thought, Passion and Action, let’s briefly consider the life and testimony of Pandita Ramabai (1858 – 1922). Dennis Hollinger begins Head, Heart and Hands Together: The Biblical Case (Chapter 8) with Pandita Ramabai as an example of biblically-balanced head, heart and hands faith.
As you read about Pandita Ramabai, who else (‘saint’ from the past or living in the present) comes to your mind as an inspirational example of head, heart and hands faith, maybe one from your campus, discipline, or community? Please feel free to share a ‘snapshot’ of their story.
Pandita Ramabai (1858 – 1922) was a scholar, poet, visionary and a prominent social reformer in India. Her heartfelt conversion (while a student in England) and faith understanding translated into action. Pandita Ramabai founded and ran Mukti mission for abandoned and indigent women and girls. She shared her conversion with these words:
“I realized after reading the 4th Chapter of John’s Gospel that Christ was truly the divine Savior He claimed to be, and no one but He could transform and uplift the downtrodden women of India. . . . Thus, my heart was drawn to the religion of Christ and I was intellectually convinced of its truth” (144).
With regard to the call of the kingdom of God she stated:
“People must not only hear about the kingdom of GOD, but must see it in actual operation, on a small scale perhaps and in imperfect form, but a real demonstration nevertheless.”
This remarkable woman’s accomplishments are presented by Dennis Hollinger as a life example of the right place of faith of the intellect and heart revealed in action and word. If you’re interested in learning more, visit Mukti mission [Note: “Mukti” means “salvation,” “freedom” or “liberation” in the Marathi language and is pronounced “Mook-ti” (as in “book-tea.”)] and/or enjoy the brief powerpoint which I came across on Youtube.
To God be the glory!
Next in series: Head, Heart and Hands Together: The Biblical Case (Chapter 8).
Note: Initial material drawn from an adult elective based upon Dennis Hollinger‘s “Head, Heart & Hands: Bringing Together Christian Thought, Passion and Action” (InterVarsity Press, 2005). Kevin Milligan facilitated the class at Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church. See the first post in the series for more on the genesis of this study guide as part of a local Emerging Scholars Network partnership (South Central Scholars Network PA FB and Christian Scholar Series).
About the author:
Tom enjoys daily conversations regarding living out the Biblical Story with his wife Theresa and their four girls, around the block, at Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church (where he teaches adult electives and co-leads a small group), among healthcare professionals as the Northeast Regional Director for the Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA), and in higher ed as a volunteer with the Emerging Scholars Network (ESN). For a number of years, the Christian Medical Society / CMDA at Penn State College of Medicine was the hub of his ministry with CMDA. Note: Tom served with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship / USA for 20+ years, including 6+ years as the Associate Director of ESN. He has written for the ESN blog from its launch in August 2008. He has studied Biology (B.S.), Higher Education (M.A.), Spiritual Direction (Certificate), Spiritual Formation (M.A.R.), Ministry to Emerging Generations (D.Min.). To God be the glory!
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