Friday, March 17, 2006

The Interfaith Society


We live in a global society where faith traditions, religions, spiritualities collide. Although most would prefer parallel insulation between different peoples and groups and their places of worship, this is becoming an increasingly difficult privilege to maintain. We need to learn to live with each other whether or not we agree on the basic questions of life and existence. We need to engage in the space between our faith traditions, so that rather than colliding and fighting, there can be peace. This is what I call the Interfaith Society. We need multi-faith comptency among the healing professions where, in our secular society, there is opportunity for positive interactions with respect and honor of diversity. We need interfaith "ambassadors" - people of faith - that are willing and able to enter into significant dialogue with other faithful people of different traditions for mutual and collective benefit, especially in education, leadership and service.

Experience shows that the deeper we go into our respective religions, the more clearly we find that basic love of God and love for all humanity which should unite us all. The more rooted one is in one's own tradition the freer and more secure one becomes in facing our fellow human beings and finding our unity in God and in our shared aspirations.

Metropolitan Paulos Mar Gregorios (d 1996)
Past President of the World Council of Churches


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