Czech: World Interfaith Harmony Week

Czech UPF , by Juraj Lajda, Prague, the Czech Republic, 16. February 2015: In the occasion of the World Interfaith Harmony Week Czech UPF together with another NGO Mozaiky Platform Dialog convened a meeting with representatives of 5 world religions in Prague on February 16. The theme of the meeting was Harmony and Peace.

The meeting had two parts. In the first part the representatives of Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Christianity and Islam shortly explained what harmony and peace mean in their own religion and in the second part the participants could join a time of sharing and enjoying a delicious Turkish and vegetarian food.

In the beginning Mrs. Nina Nováková, member of the Czech Parliament mentioned the importance of the interfaith dialogue and harmony. If we do not know each other then we have fear. She mentioned that it is important to stand on the side of goodness.

Tomas Kraus from the Federation of the Jewish communities in Prague mentioned that not many people even know that there is Interfaith Harmony Week declared by the UN.

Trilokamatma Das representing the Hare Krishna movement started with an meditation ad expressed how the interreligious activities are important. He said we all are the children of one heart.

Mr. David Hron representing Christianity said that we should no only speak about God but we should speak with God. We need to seek for the hidden truth.

Dr. Vladimír Sáňka from the Islamic centre in Prague mentioned the words of one wise man who said there will be no peace if there is not a peace among religions. Love to God and our neighbour is in all religions. He appreciated that in our country there is a good interreligious dialogue.

Prof. Kropáček, orientalist spoke about the violence and hatred which were are witnesses in the recent time. He mentioned the story of the Japanese mother the son of which was killed and she said „ I will not hate.“

Dr. Katerina Dekanovská representing the Society for Interreligious Dialogue mentioned the fact that even in her own organization there are still people who are prejudiced against other faiths. She emphasized that it is important to know the people face to face in order to avoid negative feelings.

Mr. Hüseyin Özörencik, head of the Mozaiky centre greeted the participants and expressed satisfaction that so many people came.

Mr. David Valouch representing Buddhism spoke about the various forms of Buddhism and the way how they understand harmony. There are about 5.000 Buddhists ib Czech republic.

Dr. Juraj Lajda, representing UPF in his introductory speech quoted the words of Great Mufti Ahmend Kuftaro who said that the essence of the truth is the same and in the course of history the founders of religions could catch some part of it. The religions should not fight against each other. He mentioned also the words of Rev. Moon who said that God is not sectarian and wants to embrace all the people of the world.

After the presentations of the speakers there was a ceremony of pouring water into one common bowl symbolizing unity of all religions.

In the end over 40 participants enjoyed and appreciated the time of sharing. Some of them expressed that the meeting was very useful, inspiring and uplifting the spirit. Many people expressed the idea that the interfaith activities are meaningful.