Peace group engages 1,500 religious leaders on interfaith unity
An International non-governmental organisation, Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light will in March engage no fewer than 1,500 religious leaders worldwide to deepen the understanding of the scriptures to foster peace.
The Administrative Manager of HWPL New York Branch, Ms. Amanda Dixon, said this in New York at an event to mark the World Interfaith Harmony Week observed every year in the first week of February.
She said the organisation would engage the religious leaders in a series of lectures as part of the HWPL’s annual International Religious Peace Academy initiative on March 2 and 9.
According to her, IRPA aims to deepen religious exchange and understanding beyond a basic level of comprehension of different religious scriptures.
She said, “As part of this initiative, HWPL is inviting prominent religious leaders from various faiths to deliver lectures at the IRPA. These lectures will serve as a platform for comparative research, promoting a culture of peace, and interfaith unity. By leveraging expertise in planning and conducting seminars and events both online and offline, we will ensure the lectures reach a diverse and international audience.’’
Ms Dixon said HWPL team of experts and interpreters would facilitate international delivery of the lectures via Zoom, allowing for wider accessibility for three objectives.
She said, “First, religious and cultural exchanges through study of scriptures promote understanding of different religions and cultures. Second, through the provision of educational opportunities for learning the scriptures, the number of religious leaders who deeply understand the scriptures of other religions increases, and inter-religious exchanges are expanded.
“Third, since the scriptures are the essential teachings of religion, efforts to understand the scriptures can overcome unnecessary misunderstandings and baseless accusations that lead to violence and extremism against religions, thereby spreading a culture of peace,’’
Ms Dixon further said HWPL International Religious Peace Academy aimed at overcoming unnecessary misunderstandings and exclusive attitudes among religions through religious lectures.
“This is part of the effort toward positive peace, aiming to understand and communicate with other religions more deeply through the study of other scriptures. Through this initiative, we hope to build and expand a new and innovative culture of peace among religions,” she said.
Ms Dixon also said IRPA lecture series aimed at fostering a deep study of various religious scriptures and promoted peace and harmony among different religious communities worldwide.
“The participation of world religious leaders will contribute to the success of this initiative for peace. Religion, especially the scriptures, which are the foundation of faith, has the answer to achieve a world of peace and perpetuate the prosperity of mankind. IRPA will seek the role of religious leaders who have the responsibility to lead the human society based on their understanding of religion,” she said.
According to her, IRPA is an international peace organisation and it has emphasised multilateral cooperation, including governments, international organisations, and civil society groups, as an essential measure for world peace.
Since 2014, HWPL has been operating the World Alliance of Religions’ Peace Office around the world to promote understanding among religions, prevent conflicts caused by religion, and seek the role of religion for peace.
These include a comparative study of scriptures by religious leaders; religious peace camps that promote respect and understanding among younger generations from religious backgrounds; and the HWPL Solidarity of Religions’ Peace Committee, which delivers messages of unity about peace to the world as world religious leaders.
To meet the principle offered by the UN General Assembly resolution (A/RES/53/243, 1999) and HWPL’s ‘Declaration of Peace and Cessation of War’ (DPCW) Article 10 “Spreading a Culture of Peace” through education, IRPA was planned in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goal 16 “Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions.”
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