Jain Spiritual leader and founder of Ahimsa Vishwa Bharti (AVB) Acharya Lokesh and prominent representatives of various religions from around the world attended the inaugural session of the three-day G20 Interfaith Summit recently held at MIT World Peace University, Pune.
In his opening remarks, Acharya Lokesh emphasized the importance of religious tolerance for a prosperous and peaceful world. According to him, religious leaders can help in the fight against both environmental and ideological pollution. He maintained that religion has a deep connection with development, peace, and goodwill.
Pandit Vasant Gadgil stated that efforts should be made to spread religious texts, promote religious literacy, and foster social cohesion. Only when all faiths and denominations cooperate in this way will India’s message of “Vasudhev Kutumbakam” have any impact, he highlighted.
Archbishop Felix Machado encouraged the audience to incorporate meditation and yoga into their daily lives. He emphasized the significance of this by saying that it leads to personal contentment, family harmony, and community peace and at the same time, many diseases can be cured.
According to Dr. Lesan Azadi, Director, Baha’i Academy Panchgani, it is everyone’s responsibility to spread the message of peace and harmony across the country and the world, so that people everywhere can put aside their differences in religion, caste, and society to stand together in times of need.
Saint Baba Balwinder Singh asserted that religion teaches us to unite rather than divide, and that only by embracing this teaching will we be able to achieve world peace and harmony through India’s pluralistic culture and the principle of Vasudev Kutumbakam.
All religions and all sects have something to teach humanity, Hazrat Rifiya Sahib said. Providing today’s youth with positive role models is crucial he said adding that it is important to inspire them to serve the national interest.