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Interfaith Forum members call on Dalai Lama at Bodh Gaya

His Holiness the Dalai Lama meeting with members of an Inter Faith Forum from Gaya at Gaden Phelgyeling Monastery in Bodhgaya, Bihar, India on December 21, 2018. (Photo courtesy:  OHHDL/Jeremy Russell)
His Holiness the Dalai Lama meeting with members of an Inter Faith Forum from Gaya at Gaden Phelgyeling Monastery in Bodhgaya, Bihar, India on December 21, 2018. (Photo courtesy: OHHDL/Jeremy Russell)

(TibetanReview.net, Dec22, 2018) – Members of an Inter-Faith Forum at Buddhism’s holiest place of Bodh Gaya have called on Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, on Dec 21. The forum was established in 2001 and the members included Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Muslims, Jains, Sikhs and Brahmakumaris.

The Forum’s secretary, AK Khan, has told the Dalai Lama that the activities of the Forum members included visiting each others’ places of worship and joining each other in celebrating their festivals, acknowledging their common message of love and compassion. He has said the Forum members rejected terrorism at any level and worked to encourage respect for all religions.

The Dalai Lama agreed and pointed out that all the seven billion people belonged to the same human family, each brought up with motherly love and all desiring to live a happy, joyful life.

He has also said, “I sometimes ask if religion is relevant today and since everyone needs love and affection, the answer seems to be ‘Yes’. However, it’s crucial that members of different religious traditions live in harmony with each other. If instead we quarrel and fight, people are entitled to ask, ‘What’s the use of religion?’”

He has also remarked that if we follow religion properly, all our various traditions have the potential to bring about peace of mind.

He has further said paying lip service to tradition was not enough, adding one also should not use religion as a vehicle of exploitation.

He has observed that materialistic education had brought many problems due to too much competition, with people being divided into ‘us’ and ‘them’. To counter this, he has suggested, modern education should be combined with ancient Indian understanding of the workings of the mind and emotions.

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