Thai monks meet Pope in ongoing dialogues on peace and fraternity

- through Henry Oudin

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On May 27, Pope Francis met with a delegation of Buddhist monks from the prestigious Wat Pho monastery in Bangkok. Addressing the monks, the pontiff stressed the need to continue efforts of cooperation and inclusion to bring support and progress to a world in crisis.

Buddhists and Christians must be willing to work together to “bring a glimmer of hope to a desperate humanity,” Pope Francis observed. (Catholic magazine)

During the meeting at the Vatican, the Pope recalled the Buddhist-Christian symposium held in Thailand in November 2023, which brought together 150 participants from across Asia to reflect on the theme of healing humanity and the Earth. “Today, humanity and the Earth, our common home, are indeed injured! he said. “So many wars, so many people who lost everything and were forced to flee, so many children affected by violence. » (Catholic magazine)

This week's meeting concluded with a consensus that all parties must work together for peace and healing in our increasingly interconnected world.

“In light of this truth, I urge you to work together with everyone: civil society, members of other religions, governments, international organizations, academic and scientific communities and all other interested parties to promote a friendship that supports peace and fraternity and builds a more inclusive world,” he stressed. (Catholic magazine)

Pope Francis also spoke of his visit to Thailand in 2019, where he met with the Supreme Patriarch of the Thai Buddhist community, Somdej Phra Maha Muneewong, and recalled their discussion on promoting a culture of encounter and mutual respect.

“The culture of encounter is possible, not only within our communities but also in our world, so prone to creating and propagating conflicts and exclusion,” the Pope told the Supreme Patriarch during their 2019 meeting “When we have the opportunity to appreciate and value each other despite our differences, we offer a word of hope to the world, which can encourage and support those who increasingly suffer from the harmful effects of conflict. » (Catholic magazine)

The November 2023 symposium in Thailand aimed to bridge gaps between religious traditions, promoting dialogue and understanding. Participants explored diverse topics including environmental sustainability, social justice and spiritual healing, reflecting a shared commitment to solving global issues.

The meeting strengthens long-standing relationships between Buddhism and other religious traditions in Thailand and beyond. The country has a history of religious tolerance and interfaith dialogue, with Buddhist principles often guiding national policies and cultural practices. This context provides a favorable environment for recent meetings and ongoing efforts to promote peace and harmony.

Thailand has a rich Buddhist tradition, with 93,5% of its population practicing Theravada Buddhism. According to 2018 data, Muslims make up 5,4 percent of the population while Christians make up 1,1 percent. According to the Vatican, there are approximately 325 Catholics in Thailand. Buddhism plays a central role in Thai culture, influencing social norms, festivals and daily life. Wat Pho, known for housing the famous reclining Buddha statue, is an important religious site and center of Buddhist education and practice.

See more

Pope asks Christians and Buddhists to work together for peace (Catholic magazine)
Pope to Buddhists: “Let’s work together for a more inclusive world” (Vatican News)
Pope Francis urges Thai Buddhist monks to promote peace and fraternity (La Croix International)

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The article Thai monks meet Pope in ongoing dialogues on peace and fraternity 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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