Interfaith is about creating harmony between people who profess to different faiths and ideologies. Interspirituality is an exploration of mystical traditions and experiences. Interfaith is for everyone. Interspirituality is not. Allow me to explain.
The Need to Feel Safe
Most people want to live in a peaceful society. They want to be able to go about their business without feeling marginalized, being discriminated against, or having to stay alert because of threats of violence.
However, because we live in a pluralistic and diverse society where people have different views and ideologies, there are those among us who do not feel that way. Because this need to feel safe is always present, it is important for all groups to get to know each other, to be around each other, to feel safe in each other’s presence—to inter-mingle.
My experience with interfaith events over the past few years has been exactly this. People of all faiths and different backgrounds come together, not to agree on ideologies or theologies, but rather to appreciate each other’s humanity. After each event, I have walked away with a feeling of calm and a certain degree of elation because I have witnessed cordial personal interactions in a larger societal context that feels much more divisive.
Working Towards a Peaceful Society
Interfaith should be for everyone* who wants to work towards a more peaceful society. As the name implies, interfaith should include all faiths, but we also need to include those who stand outside of organized religion, including humanists, secularists, those who prefer to label themselves spiritual-but-nonreligious, and everyone in between.
(*Here are at Harmony Interfaith Initiative, we define faith as “complete trust, confidence or strong belief in someone or something.” This definition allows us to include all belief systems, both religious and secular in nature.)
When people with diverse beliefs come together for the purpose of creating a more peaceful society, it sends a powerful message to the rest of society.
We Can Do Better
The interfaith community is making an effort to be inclusive, but we can do better. We must reach out to all the above-mentioned groups and others beyond with a simple message: We don’t have to agree on everything or merge ideologies. We can live in peace side-by-side despite our differences. Let’s show the world that it can be done.
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Bridge Building and Social Harmony
We are an educational and social good interfaith organization. We envision a world where people have access to strategies, methods and ideas that promote social harmony and enable bridge building across divides.
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©Harmony Interfaith Initiative
Registered in Hays County, Texas
Founded in 2018
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