Hindus laud Ukraine for taking lead in interfaith dialogue

Nevada (US), April 18: Hindus have applauded Ukraine for its reported announcement of hosting an annual international interfaith conference involving leaders of major religions to be called "Kyiv Interfaith Forum".

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, described it as a "step in the right direction". He urged other countries of the world to organize similar interreligious forums as "serious and honest interfaith dialogue was the need of the hour".

According to reports, this Ukraine Forum will reportedly address global and local humanitarian conflicts through dialogue and mutual respect, become a place for dialogue between leaders of various religions, and provide a venue for discussion on the issues of coexistence of different religious communities.

Ukraine's Institute of Human Rights and Prevention of Extremism and Xenophobia reportedly recently held an international conference in Kyiv on "World religions and civil societies united against hatred and extremism".

Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, stressed that Hinduism being the oldest and third largest religion of the world should always form important part of such interreligious dialogues.

Religion was the most powerful, complex and far-reaching force in our society, so we must take it seriously. And we all knew that religion comprised much more than our own particular tradition/experience, Rajan Zed pointed out.

Zed further says that in our shared pursuit for the truth, we can learn from one another and thus can arrive nearer to the truth. This dialogue may help us vanquish the stereotypes, prejudices, caricatures, etc., passed on to us from previous generations. As dialogue brings us reciprocal enrichment, we shall be spiritually richer than before the contact.

Europe's second largest country Ukraine, a land of fertile agricultural plains where women live much longer than men, is known for monumental Kyiv and fascinating Odesa, Crimea and Lviv. Viktor Yanukovych and Mykola Azarov are President and Prime Minister respectively.

Hinduism has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal.

Copyright Asian News International/DailyIndia.com