Multifaith Effort Seeks Common Ground

November 13, 2006

Author: Patrick Flanigan

Source: Democrat and Chronicle

Religion has been one of the most divisive forces in human history, the foundation for many wars, persecutions and other suffering.

But several dozen area residents who gathered at a city mosque Sunday to discuss five major religions chose to look only at those aspects of their beliefs that unite them with people of other faiths.

Their goal was to learn what they have in common, rather than focus on what divides them.

"They are only going to talk about the goodness of their religion," Tariq Chaudari, a leader of the Baitun Naseer Mosque on East Main Street, said at the outset of the Interfaith Seminar, as he introduced representatives of Islam, Christianity, Buddhism, Judaism and Sikhism.

"The best way to get along with another person is to find the goodness in that person," Chaudari said. If more people did that, he added "This world would be a very different world."

The mosque holds the seminar each year to promote harmony through understanding among different faiths, Chaudari said. Each speaker discussed a founder of that religion.