Ahead of Vesak, Catholic leaders urge Buddhists to continue interfaith work for peace

- through Henry Oudin

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Fri. Somdet Phra Mahathirachan with Cardinal Miguel Ángel Ayuso during a meeting last year. Taken from vaticannews.va

Cardinal Ayuso, prefect of the Dicastery for Interreligious Dialogue at the Vatican, published on May 6 a message of greetings to Buddhists in honor of Vesak, the most important holiday for Buddhists, which takes place on May 23 this year . The message, titled “Christians and Buddhists: Working Together for Peace Through Reconciliation and Resilience,” highlights the shared responsibility of Christians and Buddhists in promoting peace, reconciliation and resilience for the future of humanity.

Addressing the escalation of conflicts around the world, Cardinal Ayuso highlighted the urgent need for renewed attention to peace, echoing the call of Pope Saint Paul VI: “Never again war, never again war ". (Vatican News)

Ayuso noted:

We have addressed this issue several times, but the continued escalation of conflicts around the world calls for renewed attention to the crucial issue of peace and deeper reflection on our own role in overcoming the obstacles that hinder its development.

In addition to our constant prayers and hopes, the current situation demands vigorous efforts from us. To help end the hatred and desire for revenge that lead to war and to heal the wounds that war has inflicted on humanity and the earth, our common home, we must strengthen our commitment to working for of reconciliation. and resilience.

(Asian News)

The cardinal stressed that lasting peace requires addressing the root causes of conflicts and stressed the importance of addressing underlying issues that prevent equity and justice in the political, economic and cultural domains .

Ayuso quoted the late South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu (1931-2021), who said: “Forgiveness and reconciliation is not about pretending that things are different from what they are. It's not about patting each other on the back and turning a blind eye to what's going wrong. True reconciliation reveals the horror, the abuse, the pain, the degradation, the truth. (Vatican News)

Tutu lived through the apartheid period in South Africa, when the country's white regime imposed strict regulations on all non-white people. He was also a member of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), which sought to expose crimes and human rights violations during apartheid with the aim of obtaining forgiveness and reparation instead of prosecution and retaliation .

Reflecting on shared values, Cardinal Ayuso invoked the teachings of the Buddha and St. Paul, emphasizing the power of kindness and the ministry of reconciliation. He cited the late Cambodian monk and peace activist Ven. Maha Ghosananda (1913-2007), who urged us to “remove the mines of hatred from our hearts.” (Asia News) Ghosananda had left Cambodia to study in Thailand when the Khmer Rouge regime began large-scale murders of Buddhist monks, intellectuals and others seen as a threat to its ideology. When he collapsed, Ghosananda returned as one of only 3 Cambodian Buddhist monks still alive out of the nearly 000 who were alive before the 30-000 Cambian genocide.

Maha Ghosananda. Photo by Nyana Ponika. From wikimedia.org

All of us, Ayuso concluded, “are called to rediscover and cherish these values ​​found in our respective traditions, to raise awareness of the spiritual figures who embodied them and to walk together for the sake of peace.” (Vatican News)

See more

For Vesak, the Church calls on Buddhists to bear witness that “hate is never appeased by hatred” (Asia News)
Christians and Buddhists must walk together “for the sake of peace” (Vatican News)

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The post Ahead of Vesak, Catholic Leaders Urge Buddhists to Continue Interfaith Work for Peace appeared first on Buddhadoor Global.

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Henry Oudin

Henry Oudin is a Buddhist scholar, spiritual adventurer and journalist. He is a passionate seeker of the depths of Buddhist wisdom, and travels regularly to learn more about Buddhism and spiritual cultures. By sharing his knowledge and life experiences on Buddhist News, Henry hopes to inspire others to embrace more spiritual and mindful ways of living.

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