To forge an understanding among religious leaders of diverse persuasions on common challenges, including communal violence, Tibet’s supreme leader Dalai Lama is organising a two-day meet on September 20 and 21 in Delhi.
He will personally host the event, which will happen close to the Chinese President’s visit to India though the timing – organisers insist – is only a ‘coincidence’.
Tempa Tsering, the Dalai Lama’s representative in Delhi, told HT that the Tibetan leader believes India is a ‘model for religious harmony, tolerance and compassion’. “But His Holiness feels India should not take this for granted and promote and preserve this harmony.” Tsering says the Dalai Lama also believes that religious leaders need to come together to ‘contribute to the social well being of the country and help tackle issues like violence against women and environmental degradation’.
Other issues on the agenda include addressing gap between rich and poor, promoting human values, and facilitating a mechanism to provide mediation, advice and help in zones of conflict.
The event will happen around the same time as the President Xi Jinping’s visit. But Tsering termed it a ‘complete coincidence’. “The event was planned a year ago. It takes a long time to get so many senior religious leaders together. This has nothing to do with the president’s visit, and the event has nothing to do with politics,” says Tsering.
Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Morari Bapu, representatives of the Shankaracharyas, and several other Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Parsi, Jew leaders are expected at the event.