When discussing current events – in news media and in comments by politicians and ordinary people – we often hear people speak negatively about other people’s religions. They make broad accusations based on the actions of one or a few persons.
Actually – even though some individuals fall short – the authentic beliefs and teachings of various religious faiths actually support profound respect for all human beings, profound compassion, and peace.
The Olympia Fellowship of Reconciliation’s June 2012 TV program explores humane truths in four different faiths: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism. We explore how the scriptures and other writings – and the actual lived traditions – within these faiths have moved their members to work for peace.
Near the end of the program we affirm the value of interfaith respect and cooperation, which we have already been modeling throughout the program.
We also express support for Interfaith Works of Thurston County, (360) 357-7224 www.interfaith-works.org, which has been doing excellent work for decades, including bringing together people from different faiths to work on hunger, homelessness, and other issues as well as interfaith understanding.
Our four guests speak from their own respective backgrounds:
Danny Kadden shares extensive knowledge of the Jewish tradition and also works as Executive Director of Interfaith Works.
Don Foran comes from the Catholic part of the Christian tradition and also connects literature, and poetry with profound issues of the real world, including peace and social justice.
Sheikh Yosof Wanly is the new Imaam of the Islamic Center of Olympia and shares some of Islam’s core beliefs that most Americans don’t know about.
Dan Ryan practices the Zen form of Buddhism and participates actively in the South Sound Buddhist Peace Fellowship, Veterans for Peace, and the Olympia FOR.
The national FOR’s website mentions 12 affiliated Religious Peace Fellowships (RPFs) (Lutheran, Episcopal, Muslim, Jewish, etc.) on this list: http://www.forusa.org/groups/religious-peace-fellowships
On this small planet, we need to under-stand and respect each other’s religious faith. That’s one step toward peace. And we need to appreciate how various religions really do support peace.