Interfaith Service in Western New York Attended by Over 6,000

September 21, 2006

Source: University of Buffalo Reporter

On September 21, 2006 University of Buffalo Reporter reported, "In the first appearance of his three-day visit to [the University of Buffalo], His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama participated in an interfaith service on Monday in Alumni Arena that showcased the religious diversity of Western New York, featuring spiritual traditions ranging from Sikh to Baha'i to Roman Catholicism. Through a series of readings, prayers and chants from these many traditions, the service demonstrated to the audience of 6,000 that whatever signs, symbols and practices distinguish them, all spiritual traditions offer different dimensions of the same sacred experience. In brief remarks during the service, the Dalai Lama called for harmony among religious faiths, and noted that religious traditions and spirituality play an important role in these times of materialism, competition, stress and injustice. 'In the past, different religions, different traditions had very little contact with each other,' His Holiness said. 'But now the whole world is becoming smaller, so we're bound to come across more connections. Therefore, religious harmony is extremely important—harmony based on mutual respect, mutual admiration and sometimes mutual learning,' he said, noting that meeting others from different traditions 'has enriched my own thinking'... Interfaith services such as the one at UB are helpful in promoting religious harmony, he added."