Faith is an essential foundation of life

UN Secretary General Moon

In delivering the 2013 UN Message to World Interfaith Harmony week, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said "For billions of people around the world, faith is an essential foundation of life."

Secretary-General's Message for 2013

For billions of people around the world, faith is an essential foundation of life.
It provides strength in times of difficulty and an important sense of community. The vast majority of people of faith live in harmony with their neighbours, whatever their creed, but each religion also harbours a strident minority prepared to assert fundamentalist doctrines through bigotry and extreme violence.

These acts are an affront to the heritage and teachings of all major religions. They also contravene the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which affirms the right of all to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. It is imperative that the moderate majority is empowered to stand firm against the forces of extremism. But, this can only be achieved through strong leadership.

Next month at its forum in Vienna, the Alliance of Civilizations will continue its efforts to unite faiths and cultures. Whether on the world stage or in their communities, religious and cultural leaders have a responsibility to speak the language of tolerance and respect. This is a central message of World Interfaith Harmony Week.

We must also reach out to young people with a message of hope. Too often marginalized, jobless and facing a future of uncertainty, youth can be easy prey for fanatics offering a sense of cause and community. We need to expose the invalidity of this lure and offer a compelling alternative.

This cannot be achieved by words alone. Young people need jobs and a meaningful stake in a future that they can believe in. The United Nations is currently engaged in defining a post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Our goal is to eradicate extreme poverty in our lifetime and promote equitable economic opportunity for all while protecting the environment. To do that, we need the engagement of all actors – including young people and communities of faith.

We live in times of turmoil and transformation – economic, environmental, demographic and political. These transitions bring both hope and uncertainty. Our job is to ensure that hope wins, and our task will be made easier if the followers of all faiths collaborate in common cause. Let us never forget that what divides us is minuscule compared with what unites us. Working together, we can achieve all our goals for peace, prosperity and physical and spiritual well-being.

Ban Ki-moon

Source

Photo Credit







Religions for Peace

Religions for Peace

Ramadan Message

Ramadan Murburak

The Chair and members of Religions for Peace Australia give spiritual greetings to our Muslim brothers and sisters as they embark upon the Holy Month of Ramadan. It is a time when Muslims, and indeed all of humanity, are reminded of the transcendent element in life and that our minds and bodies must rise above the materialism and consumerism of contemporary living. Our prayers and best wishes go out to the Muslim community at this sacred time.

The Golden Rule

Golden Rule, Australian Version

An Australian Version of the Golden Rule Poster is available

Multifaith Australia - Reimaging our Common Future

Reimagining Our Common Future

Religions for Peace Australia, with RMIT Chaplaincy, present Multifaith Australia – Reimagining Our Common Future public lecture by Religions for Peace for World Interfaith Harmony Week. Watch a video of this lecture by Prof. Joe Camillerie and the response by Maria Vamvakinou, MP.

Offer a Meal Movement

Offer a Meal

Religions for Peace Australia invites you to join the worldwide Offer a Meal Movement – a movement which skips a meal a couple of times a month in solidarity with–and prayer for –those suffering from hunger, extreme poverty or violent conflict.

G20 Interfaith Summit: Religious Freedom and Economic Development

G20 Interfaith Summit

Griffith University Centre for Interfaith & Cultural Dialogue will conduct a G20 Interfaith Summit on November 16 - 18. This Interfaith Summit will explore Religious Freedom and Economic Development.
Read more .

Interaction

Interaction

Affliated with Religions for Peace Australia, InterAction is Interfaith Youth building a generation-wide movement of young people. Inspired by individual spiritual traditions, InterAction works together to build a better world. Visit Interaction

Anti Racism

Racism, it stops with Me

Religions for Peace has partnered with the Australian Human Rights Commission Anti Racism Strategy

9th World Assembly

Religions for Peace

The 9th World Assembly of Religions for Peace was held in Vienna during November, 2013. Theme Papers and Resources are available.