Tasmania: January 2018

Tasmania Logo

Greetings of peace!

Many good wishes for a peaceful, happy and successful new year in 2018!

UN World Interfaith Harmony Week will occur in the first week of February 2018. As part of honouring the week, Religions for Peace Tas and the Multicultural Council of Tasmania have combined resources to bring a young couple from Melbourne to share their experience and their expertise with us. Nivy Balachandran, Regional Coordinator of United Religions Initiative and Executive Member of Religions for Peace Australia, is a recognised young leader of interfaith and intercultural affairs and works in the area of conflict transformation and cross cultural communication. She will be joined by her husband, Tal Meretz. Nivy belongs to the Hindu faith and her husband is from the Jewish faith tradition.

Greetings of peace!

While here, Nivy will be speaking as part of the Community Afternoon during the Conference Imagining a Different Future: overcoming barriers to climate justice https://www.climatejustice.network/
Community Afternoon Date: Saturday 10 February 2018, Nivy will be speaking during the session from 2.15-3.45pm.
Venue: UTAS Medical Science Precinct, 17 Liverpool St, Hobart.
Session Title:Reaching Out – ways to connect that work. How can we increase the voices that support climate change action?’
Entry is free to the Community Afternoon, but interested people are requested to register through Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/climate-justice-community-event-tickets-42181753761 Spaces are very limited. A draft program of the Community Afternoon is found here

The official Conference is an international one and many experts in the field from many countries will be keynote speakers. The inspiring full program can be found at: https://www.climatejustice.network/

In addition, the following two events will honour UN World Interfaith Harmony Week 2018:

Negotiating Confrontation

Date: Saturday 10 February 2018 7.00-8.30pm
Venue: Multicultural Hub, 65 Hopkins St, Moonah
Title: Negotiating Confrontation
Facilitator: Nivy Balachandran will be joined by her husband, Tal Meretz. Both are founding members of Interaction, the youth branch of Religions for Peace Australia. They are lively, entertaining and knowledgeable in practical ways of communicating across ‘barriers’.

Sacred Listening is the Basis of Interfaith Harmony

Date: Sunday 11 February 2018, 3.00-4.30pm
Venue: UTAS Multifaith Centre, TUU Building, Churchill Ave, Sandy Bay
Title: Sacred Listening is the Basis of Interfaith Harmony
Facilitator: Nivy Balachandran will be joined by her husband, Tal Meretz. Both are founding members of Interaction, the youth branch of Religions for Peace Australia.

Religions for Peace Australia (Tas Branch) gratefully acknowledges the financial support of the Multicultural Council of Tasmania towards Nivy and Tal’s fares and accommodation.

If you have any enquiries, the best way to contact me is to ring me, Terry Sussmilch, on 6272 6521.

We hope that 2018 is a year full of peace for you all, individually and collectively!

Choose to be Calm

Choose to be Calm: A short course on thinking positively, including an introduction to a simple form of meditation. Develop personal powers for a calm and positive approach to life.

Dates: Saturdays 20 and 27 January and 3 and 10 February (four continuous sessions), from 10.30am-noon.
Venue: Brahma Kumaris Meditation Centre, 51 Risdon Rd., New Town (Cnr Bell St).
Bookings are required. Phone Helen on 6244 8362. The program is offered as a service to the community.

Peace Boat visiting Hobart

The Japanese and Australian Governments have not yet signed the new Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, claiming instead to be protected by the nuclear weapons of the United States. In both nations, powerful civil society movements are demanding their leaders reject these weapons of mass destruction and abide by the new international legal norm.

The people of Japan and Australia have experienced the impacts of the nuclear fuel chain, from the tragic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, to nuclear testing on Aboriginal land in Western and South Australia, uranium mining and radioactive contamination following the Fukushima reactor melt-down.

Making Waves is a speaking tour featuring nuclear survivors from Japan and Australia, travelling aboard Peace Boat’s voyage to Australia from 24 January – 6 February 2018.

Public events, meetings and media opportunities will take place in five cities. The Tour is a collaboration between Peace Boat and the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, in connection with local organisations in each city. International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) won the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.

Hobart Event: Friday 2 February 12:30-2pm
Location: Parliament Lawns, Salamanca Place. In the event of wet weather, the event will be moved into Parliament House.
Free event. Register here.

Dalai Lama’s New Year Message

“It’s important that, as we begin the New Year, look forward,” said His Holiness the Dalai Lama in a New Year’s day address. “We should project our intention ahead, so that we make this year a meaningful one.”



The Sacred Art of Gardening:

A new program entitled The Sacred Art of Gardening will be facilitated by Kris Schaffer, Aboriginal Horticulturalist and Artist.

The ongoing monthly program will start on 3rd February 2018 from 10am-3pm.

Venue: 94 Morphetts Rd, Neika
Enquiries to Kris on 0421042135.

Feel welcome to join in and enjoy the experience of being in Kris’ magical garden.

Soul Food

Date: Sunday 4th February, 3 pm to 4pm
Venue: Baha’i Centre of Learning, 1 Tasman Highway, Hobart.

This month’s program, Sweet fragrance of Friendship, aims to develop the theme of friendship as a foundation for the unity of humankind. The music for this program will be by Toby Stratton, pianist playing jazz and popular genres.

As always we do our best to provide a thought provoking relaxing pleasant program for all, so please join us at the Baha’i Centre of Learning, 1 Brooker Ave, Hobart. Refreshments served. For more information call Val 0404 080 768.

Dancers of Universal Peace:

Attached is the flyer for Anahata’s dance weekend in Hobart in February.

Dates: Friday 23rd Feb 2018 7pm, Sat – Sun 24th – 25th Feb 9.45am – 5.30pm
Venue: Multicultural Hub 65 Hopkins Street, Moonah
Friday evening only: $20
Full weekend: $180,
DOUP Member: $165
Early Bird $20 discount if paid in full by 9th Feb 2018
Registrations and enquiries: contact Nicola 0400051963 nicola.amina@gmail.com or Karuna 03 6239 1047

You can find more information about Anahata on http://www.traveling-light.net/ and about the Dances of Universal Peace on www.dancesofuniversalpeaceaustralia.org

Joining together in Dance and Song with sacred phrases from many traditions, we create a space where feelings of unity, love and grace can arise: We feel the Touch of Spirit on the Body, a Weekend of Dances of Universal Peace with Anahata Iradah. Anahata is a wonderful international dance teacher. I hope you will be able to join us for a wonderful weekend.

Sacred Conversations…

Sacred Conversations… Sacred listening… Sacred speaking…. Sacred silence…
Join us for interfaith dialogue, prayer, meditation, music and more… You will be most welcome.
Enquiries to Julian on 0401 673 016

Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions

A Statement on Jerusalem from the Executive Director and Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Parliament of the World’s Religions, Dr Larry Greenfield and Dr Robert P Sellers:

At the Parliament of the World’s Religions we are alarmed by the decision of the President of the United States to move the US Embassy to Jerusalem. We are distressed by the escalating tensions in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict that this decision is causing. We entreat all parties to engage in strategies that avoid further provocations, that give the highest regard for the value of every human life, and that envision a future of non-violence, reconciliation and justice as the most effective route to peace.

We honour the courageous justice builders and peacemakers on the ground, from all beliefs and communities, whose incredible work has shown us that this conflict need not perpetually tear us apart….

Emmaus Community

The rule of our community, The Primacy of Love, begins with these words: Seek God, and God alone.

Why? Because that is all there is.

Nothing else matters or means anything without God.

Our “mission” as a monastic community is to make the desire for God the sole defining purpose of our existence; and our “ministry” within the church is to serve as a witness to that desire. We do not engage in any other active ministry than that.

You can read about the activities of the Emmaus Community over Christmastide and Epiphany in their newsletter

Social Cohesion Research:

A group headed by Professor Gary Bouma (Monash) including Professor Douglas Ezzy (UTAS), Professor Gregory Barton, Dr Anna Halafoff, Professor Lori Beaman and Professor Robert Jackson, have received an ARC grant to research religious diversity in Australia, with respect to investigating strategies to maintain social cohesion.

This project aims to make Australia safer through identifying constructive responses to religious diversity as incidents of discrimination and violence on the basis of religion are escalating.

Programs that respond to religious diversity in local institutions are key to preventing social dislocation and violence. This project will identify strategies for responding to religious diversity in the institutions of education, policing, migration and in legislation. It will evaluate the outcomes of these strategies in terms of their contribution to social cohesion and the prevention of violence. Significant benefit to the communities and organisations include providing practical strategies they can immediately use to make Australia safer.

Prof Gary Bouma AM FAICD is an Emeritus Professor of Sociology at Monash, UNESCO Chair in Interreligious and Intercultural Relations – Asia Pacific – and Associate Priest, The Anglican Parish of St John and St Agnes, East Malvern, Victoria.

In peace,
Convenor RfP Tasmania Branch
Vice Chair, Religions for Peace Australia
Phone 6272 6521

Religions for Peace Tasmania

Religions for Peace Tasmania