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Interfaith bodies need to become activists


DEXTER WHARTON

Interfaith bodies need to become activists

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THERE IS VALUE in interfaith dialogue. In fact, societies need such conversations in order to delay wars, ease strife, better understand one’s neighbours and heal themselves.

One of the key problems with interfaith dialogue, though, is when nothing happens beyond airing grievances, concerns and the sharing of ideas.

In order to better contribute towards tackling society’s ills, interfaith bodies have to move beyond the boardroom or other meeting places and into the streets and on the ground where social issues are being experienced, and address them head-on.

Condemning the actions of religious extremists will only do so much. The time for lip service alone is long gone. What society is crying out for today is willing individuals who are prepared to risk their lives and beliefs to promote an agenda that offers solutions to social issues through proactive action.

Where are the men and women who are willing to risk their reputations and stand up against injustices of every form? Not until we embrace and adopt the idea that through action things get done, will society begin to benefit from the efforts and sacrifices of men and women committed to doing something to save their communities.

Interfaith bodies have a responsibility to educate society, provide moral and ethical guidance for society through collaboration, share a vision of hope for the community and actively pursue efforts that challenge moral degradation and injustices to members of the society.

It is true that different faiths will have individual ideas regarding representing the conscience of society, and how best to voice that conscience when dealing with societal problems. However, at the most fundamental level, all faiths want what is best for society. All faiths are concerned about the well-being of their charges, and it is this obligation and responsibility that should help to encourage interfaith bodies to strive towards doing more than talking when faced with the needs of a people.

– DEXTER WHARTON

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