Tibetan scholar Samdhong Rinpoche on Thursday said religions are not to be tolerated, but to be respected. “All religions should be given equal respect. If someone is evolved and mature in their own religious tradition, it will lead to compassion towards those ignorant of their faith,” he said.
The Gandhian scholar, who was speaking during a discussion on ‘Can religion promise peace to all humanity?’ at the Chennai International Centre at the Madras School of Economics, was responding to a question from N. Ravi, Chairman, Kasturi & Sons. He said understanding the diversity of religions can be possible only by real faith in one’s own religion. The question was: “With a variety of religions across the country and the world, how will you resolve conflicts?”
The scholar said there was no readymade remedy to resolve conflicts.
“We have to educate people that existing conflict is not a religious conflict. One religion cannot be for all the people and therefore many religious traditions are coming into being. Like one kind of food is not sufficient for everyone, different religions need to exist. It is not a luxury. Intimate dialogue between religions is necessary. Scholars and religious leaders should meet and have genuine dialogues, have inter-religious prayers. These are some possible methods. We need to understand that the cause of conflict is not religion,” he said.
Tenzin Priyadarshi, founding president, Dalai Lama Centre for Ethics and Transformative Values at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said that people have gotten into the habit of labelling issues as religious conflicts rather than understanding the issues behind those.
“Building trust is very important, and civil society suffers from lack of trust. In any society, we should not let go of civic sense. You can have a civil disagreement even if your opponent has the polar opposite of your belief. Religious sensitivity should be mutually acceptable,” he said.
source — Hindu Bureau ,chennai