By Nurdin Kaparov,
Indialogue Foundation and Confederation Of Voluntary Associations are happy to organize their annual Interfaith Dialogue event today, on 7th August 2012 at Fortune Park Vallabha on theme of “Charity for Empowerment: Concept and Practices in Different Faiths”. We kindly welcome our today’s prominent scholars and religious leaders who have come all the way to share their thoughts and guest who joined today’s event to learn and to spread the message of peace to their respective communities.
Current advanced technology and telecommunications era makes our world smaller and it is supposed to bring humankind much closer to each other. But strangely and unfortunately the more technology and communication advance the more gap between humankind increases. In this hectic age humanity needs to understand each other more than ever.
It is our nature that we are enemy of unknown. When any of us hear a strange noise while walking in a dark street, our first reaction will be defense and worry, but after going and seeing that the noise is caused by a small kitten our defensive and worried reaction will turn into love, care and sympathy. It is necessary to promote intercultural and interfaith dialogue to its new heights to lay foundation for peaceful living and to prevent consequences of intolerance and hatred in the future.
It became an annual event for organizers to collaborate in organizing an Interfaith Dialogue. Today’s event carries the objective of bringing similarities among World Religions and voicing the message of Peace. The past three events namely “Fasting in Religions” in 2009, “Rights of Neighbors in Religions” in 2010 and “Respect to other Faith in Religions” in 2011 were pleasant gatherings with enlightening speeches by religious leaders and theologians. These three previous occasions had strongly revealed that there are many similar features in Religions that should be discovered to enable to act as bonds for relationship among communities.
During the Month of Ramadan the Iftar Dinners are special occasions where people of diverse backgrounds are invited to come together and share meal under high human values. As the first event “Fasting in Religions” in 2009 was organized in same month and this annual endeavor carried being held in same period as tradition, and today also we are meeting in Holy month of Ramadan. At 2009 gathering speakers deliberated about the existence of fasting practices in Religions. And moreover scholars have also counted the spiritual benefits of this worship and also the social advantages as assistance in development humane characters like empathy, care and patience.
The second event with the remarkable theme “Rights of Neighbors in Religions” in 2010 was conducted in atmosphere of sympathy and care at Indialogue Centre. And especially the host Indialogue Centre’s neighbors were also invited to this occasion to suit to the theme of the activity. “Helping in difficult times”, “Loving” and “Caring” are among the fundamental principals advocated by all the Religions to favor Neighbors despite their religious beliefs. But our today’s work oriented life and addiction to television channel programs and to technologies like computers have diminished the neighborliness in large extend.
More awareness on the fact that World Religions give value to Neighbors could probably assist bringing more activism into neighborhoods. In this direction the Indialogue Foundation facilitated an inspiring family get-together on “Neighborhood Iftar/Meal” on Sunday, 21st August 2011 at its centre as convenient location after one year of said Interfaith Dialogue. Indialogue Foundation took initiative of bringing families of residencies in neighborhood with entire family members including children and elders with aim of fostering neighborliness. This event had many important distinctions from conventional get-together, as guests being requested to bring meal along with them to share during Iftar feast to enable better socialization. The partaking of a good number of families from different communities and perhaps some neighbors meeting each other first time was a motivating gesture that this endeavor should be promoted to assist building of relationship between neighbors.
Last year’s Interfaith Dialogue with exciting theme on “Respect to other Faiths in Religions” has strongly shown that Religions advocate “Respect to others Faiths”. Especially India being home to people of diverse faiths and living in harmonious atmosphere for centuries could be set as an evidence of this reality. The exceptional cases could be fault of hate-mongers who seek to achieve their goals by misusing religion. World Religious doctrines advocate “Respect to other Faiths” and interfaith dialogues are the way to bring peace and harmony in the world.
Today in this function, we will be fortunate to listen to religious leaders on “Charity for Empowerment” and distinguished speakers will enrich wisdom and remind one and all about the importance of dialogue, harmony, care, peace and unity. We hope those essential values will be inculcated in each and every individual and this platform will be a humble contribute in this regard.
Mr. Nurdin Kaparov, Director Hyderabad Office, Indialogue Foundation
Dr. Mazher Hussain, Director, Confederation Of Voluntary Associations
Shri Vithal Rao Arya, President, State Council of AryaSamaj (AryaPratinidhiSabha)
Sister B. K. Anjali, Raja Yoga Teacher, BrahmakumariIshwariyaVishwavidyalaya
Ven. K. SanghaRakshita Mahathera, Chairman & Chief Abbot,AnandaBudhaVihar Trust
Rev. Fr. Dr.Anthoniraj Thumma, Executive Secretary, Andhra Pradesh Bishop’s Council
Moulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani, Chairman, Al-Mahad Al Aali Al Islami & Founder & Patron, Centre for Peace and True Message
Shri Kasturchand Jabak, Founder President, Shri Jai TribhuvanParshvadham
Sardar Nanak Singh Nishter, Director, International Sikh Centre for Interfaith Relations
Mr. Omim Maneckshaw Debara, Trustee, ParsiZoarastrianAnjuman of Secunderbad and Hyderabad