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Annual Vatican message to Buddhists emphasizes fraternity

April 24, 2014

The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has issued its annual message to Buddhists on the occasion of Vesakh (also known as Hanamatsuri), which commemorates Buddha’s birthday.

“As Buddhists and Christians, we live in a world all too often torn apart by oppression, selfishness, tribalism, ethnic rivalry, violence and religious fundamentalism, a world where the ‘other’ is treated as an inferior, a non- person, or someone to be feared and eliminated if possible,” the message stated. “Yet we are called, in a spirit of cooperation with other pilgrims and with people of good will, to respect and to defend our shared humanity in a variety of socioeconomic, political and religious contexts.”

“Drawing upon our different religious convictions, we are called especially to be outspoken in denouncing all those social ills which damage fraternity; to be healers who enable others to grow in selfless generosity, and to be reconcilers who break down the walls of division and foster genuine brotherhood between individuals and groups in society,” the pontifical council added.


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