Religious Hindu and Jewish leaders have held an interfaith dialogue in New York and Washington to foster mutual understanding and respect between different communities.A two-day intense dialogue held this week dealt with issues of mutual interest, which concluded with a briefing at the US Capitol.
The meeting was organised by the American Jewish Committee, Hindu American Foundation and World Council of Religious Leaders. Besides Hindu and Jew religious leaders, officials from the Obama Administration and Israeli Government also attended the meeting.
"In order to bring forth communal harmony and peace throughout the world, we need to engage in interfaith dialogue to foster mutual understanding and respect. In that spirit, we began two summits ago and continued today with the Jews as a first step," Swami Avdeshananda Giri, said. Trustee of the Hindu Dharma Acharya Sabha, Giri led the Hindu Sabha delegation.
"I hope these two summits will serve to galvanize this relationship in the US for the benefit of not only these two communities, but society at large," said Rabbi David Rosen of the American Jewish Council.
The US meeting is a follow up to the Hindu-Jewish Summit held in New Delhi in 2007 and Jerusalem in 2008 -- first initiated by Bawa Jain, secretary general of World Council of Religious Leaders. "In the coming together of the world's two oldest religions, I see great prospects for furthering strategic relations between India-Israel and India-Israel and the US" Jain said.
"It was a rare opportunity to bring our most revered spiritual leaders to this place to share their blessings, celebrate what binds us as people of faith and absorb the serenity and wisdom that their presence affords," said Suhag Shukla from Hindu America Foundation.