World Religions Log Out | Topics | Search
Moderators | Edit Profile

Soaring Spirit with Tears » World Religions  

  Thread Last Poster Posts Pages Last Post
  ClosedClosed: New threads not accepted on this page        

Welcome to World Religions.

Author Message
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Posted on Tuesday, September 25, 2001 - 12:25 am:   

From the Dalai Lama

Dear friends around the world:

The events of this day cause every thinking person to stop their daily lives, whatever is going on in them, and to ponder deeply the larger
questions of life. We search again for not only the meaning of life, but the purpose of our individual and collective experience as we have
created it--and we look earnestly for ways in which we might recreate ourselves as a human species, so that we will never treat each other this way again.

The hour has come for us to demonstrate at the highest level our most extraordinary thought about Who We Really Are. There are two possible
responses to what has occurred today. The first comes from love, the second from fear.

If we come from fear we may panic and do things--as individuals and as nations--that could only cause further damage. If we come from love we
will find refuge and strength, even as we provide it to others.

This is the moment of your ministry. This is the time of teaching. What you teach at this time, through your every word and action right now, will
as indelible lessons in the hearts and minds of those whose lives you touch, both now, and for years to come.

We will set the course for tomorrow, today. At this hour. In this moment.

Let us seek not to pinpoint blame, but to pinpoint cause. Unless we take this time to look at the cause of our experience, we will remove ourselves from the experiences it creates. Instead, we will forever live in fear of retribution from those within the human family who feel aggrieved, and, likewise, seek retribution from them.

To us [Buddhist thinkers] the reasons are clear. We have not learned the most basic human lessons. We have not remembered the most basic human truths. We have not understood the most basic spiritual wisdom. In short, we have not been listening to God, and because we have not, we watch ourselves do ungodly things.

The message we hear from all sources of truth is clear: We are all one. That is a message the human race has largely ignored. Forgetting this
truth is the only cause of hatred and war, and the way to remember is simple: Love, [in] this and every moment. If we could love even those who have attacked us, and seek to understand why they have done so, what then would be our response?

Yet if we meet negativity with negativity, rage with rage, attack with attack, what then will be the outcome?

These are the questions that are placed before the human race today. They are questions that we have failed to answer for thousands of years.

Failure to answer them now could eliminate the need to answer them at all.

If we want the beauty of the world that we have co-created to be experienced by our children and our children's children, we will have to become spiritual activists right here, right now, and cause that to happen. We must choose to be a cause in the matter.

So, talk with God today. Ask God for help, for counsel and advice, for insight and for strength and for inner peace and for deep wisdom. Ask
God on this day to show us how to show up in the world in a way that will cause the world itself to change. And join all those people around the world who are praying right now, adding your Light to the Light that dispels all fear.

That is the challenge that is placed before every thinking person today.

Today the human soul asks the question: What can I do to preserve the beauty and the wonder of our world and to eliminate the anger and hatred--and the disparity that inevitably causes it--in that part of the world which I touch?

Please seek to answer that question today, with all the magnificence that is You. What can you do TODAY...[at] this very moment?

A central teaching in most spiritual traditions is: What you wish to experience, provide for another.

Look to see, now, what it is you wish to experience--in your own life, and in the world. Then see if there is another for whom you may be the source of that.

If you wish to experience peace, provide peace for another. If you wish to know that you are safe, cause [others] to know that they are safe.

If you wish to better understand seemingly incomprehensible things, help another to better understand.

If you wish to heal your own sadness or anger, seek to heal the sadness or anger of another.

Those others are waiting for you now. They are looking to you for guidance, for help, for courage, for strength, for understanding, and for
assurance at this hour. Most of all, they are looking to you for love.

My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.

Dalai Lama
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Posted on Tuesday, September 25, 2001 - 01:02 am:   

Sept. 18, 2001 Amritapuri

Tuesday is a day set aside for meditation at Amritapuri. It also provides a precious opportunity for all the residents to spend a few hours in Amma's presence. At this time Amma can give all Her attention to answering questions and discussing spiritual matters with Her children. In the morning everyone gathers in the temple to sit in silence and contemplation; late in the morning or early in the afternoon Amma arrives, and, after a guided meditation, gives satsang and prasad.

Today, before the guided meditation, Amma asked everyone to dedicate the benefits of their meditation to helping the souls of the departed and to easing the suffering of all those who have lost a loved ones, as well as for the peace of the whole world.

After the meditation, Amma asked everyone to sincerely pray for world peace. She then led all assembled in chanting LOKAH SAMASTAH SUKHINO BHAVANTU (May all beings be happy) nine times, followed by the universal prayer for peace OM SHANTI SHANTI SHANTI.

Amma also said that She was very happy about the special archanas and prayers for peace which continue to be conducted every day at Amritapuri. Originally scheduled for seven days, in the light of the events taking place in the world, these prayers will continue indefinitely.

About these prayers, Amma said that they really do have an effect. She reminded everyone that some years ago, when the Skylab was going to fall to earth, even the scientists asked everyone to pray that it land in the ocean, so that no one would be hurt. Amma said that at that time, even the atheists began to focus their attention on that goal. And, when it did fall to earth, where did the Skylab land? Not in a populated area, not on land at all, but at sea. Amma said that in the same way, surely prayers for peace will reduce people's suffering and reduce the magnitude of conflicts in the world.

Ôm Namah Sivaya
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Posted on Thursday, September 27, 2001 - 06:49 pm:   

by Thich Nhat Hanh. Vietnamese Buddhist monk

I am a World Trade Center tower, standing tall in the clear blue sky, feeling a violent blow in my side, and I am a towering inferno of pain and suffering imploding upon myself and collapsing to the ground.

May I rest in peace.

I am a terrified passenger on a hijacked airplane not knowing where we are going or that I am riding on fuel tanks that will be instruments of death, and I am a worker arriving at my office not knowing that in just a moment my future will be obliterated.

May I rest in peace.

I am a pigeon in the plaza between the two towers eating crumbs from someone's breakfast when fire rains down on me from the skies, and I am a bed of flowers admired daily by thousands of tourists now buried under five stories of rubble.

May I rest in peace.

I am a firefighter sent into dark corridors of smoke and debris on a mission of mercy only to have it collapse around me, and I am a rescue worker risking my life to save lives who is very aware that I may not make it out alive.

May I rest in peace.

I am a survivor who has fled down the stairs and out of the building to safety who knows that nothing will ever be the same in my soul again,
and I am a doctor in a hospital treating patients burned from head to toe who knows that these horrible images will remain in my mind forever.

May I know peace.

I am a tourist in Times Square looking up at the giant TV screens thinking I'm seeing a disaster movie as I watch the Twin Towers crash to the ground, and I am a New York woman sending e-mails to friends and family letting them know that I am safe.

May I know peace.

I am a piece of paper that was on someone's desk this morning and now I'm debris scattered by the wind across lower Manhattan, and I am a stone in the graveyard at Trinity Church covered with soot from the buildings that once stood proudly above me, death meeting death.

May I rest in peace.

I am a dog sniffing in the rubble for signs of life, doing my best to be of service, and I am a blood donor waiting in line to make a simple but very needed contribution for the victims.

May I know peace.

I am a resident in an apartment in downtown New York who has been forced to evacuate my home, and I am a resident in an apartment uptown who has walked 100 blocks home in a stream of other refugees.

May I know peace.

I am a family member who has just learned that someone I love has died, and I am a pastor who must comfort someone who has suffered a heart-breaking loss.

May I know peace.

I am a loyal American who feels violated and vows to stand behind any military action it takes to wipe terrorists off the face of the earth, and
I am a loyal American who feels violated and worries that people who look and sound like me are all going to be blamed for this tragedy.

May I know peace.

I am a frightened city dweller who wonders whether I'll ever feel safe in a skyscraper again, and I am a pilot who wonders whether there will ever be a way to make the skies truly safe.

May I know peace.

I am the owner of a small store with five employees that has been put out of business by this tragedy, and I am an executive in a multinational corporation who is concerned about the cost of doing business in a terrorized world.

May I know peace.

I am a visitor to New York City who purchases postcards of the World Trade Center Twin Towers that are no more, and I am a television reporter trying to put into words the terrible things I have seen.

May I know peace.

I am a boy in New Jersey waiting for a father who will never come home, and I am a boy in a faraway country rejoicing in the streets of my village
because someone has hurt the hated Americans.

May I know peace.

I am a general talking into the microphones about how we must stop the terrorist cowards who have perpetrated this heinous crime, and I am an intelligence officer trying to discern how such a thing could have happened on American soil, and I am a city official trying to find ways to alleviate the suffering of my people.

May I know peace.

I am a terrorist whose hatred for America knows no limit and I am willing to die to prove it, and I am a terrorist sympathizer standing with all the enemies of American capitalism and imperialism, and I am a master strategist for a terrorist group who planned this abomination. My heart is not yet capable of openness, tolerance, and loving.

May I know peace.

I am a citizen of the world glued to my television set, fighting back my rage and despair at these horrible events, and I am a person of faith struggling to forgive the unforgivable, praying for the consolation of those who have lost loved ones, calling upon the merciful beneficence of God/Yahweh/Allah/Spirit/Higher Power.

May I know peace.

I am a child of God who believes that we are all children of God and we are all part of each other.

May we all know peace.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Posted on Sunday, September 30, 2001 - 03:22 am:   

(Speech delivered at the Dili Cathedral in East Timor on 18th September 2001 during an ecumenical service for the victims of terrorist attack against NY and the Pentagon. The service was co-celebrated by Catholic bishop and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Rev. Carlos F. X. Belo, and representatives from the Muslim and Protestant communities).

I lived a good portion of a quarter of a century in New York. There I met thousands of people of different nationalities and beliefs. There is no other country in the world with this extraordinary ethnic, cultural and religious diversity.

It was with horror that I learned the news of the tragedy that befell my American friends. Our leaders, and our humble people, received the news of the tragedy with profound sadness. Hundreds of simple family people have visited the US Mission in Dili to pay their respects.

No cause, however noble, no grievance or claim however valid, will ever be great enough to justify the use of terror against innocent civilians. Yet fanatics have existed through centuries and caused incalculable suffering to humankind. Let us not ever forget the greatest calamity of all, the Holocaust unleashed by Adolf Hitler, against Jews and Gypsies.

In the sixties we witnessed a wave of terror in Europe by extreme left fanatics such as Action Directe in France, the Red Brigade in Italy, the Bader Meinhof in Gemany, Carlos "the Jackal", the Japanese Red Army and many others.

The European experience in successfully eliminating the terrorist organizations in Europe, and the obliteration of the Japanese Red Army terror network, provides us with a glimpse of hope that democracies can prevail over terrorism.

But in recent years we have witnessed the rising of a new form of terrorism that is mostly located in the Islamic world notably in the Middle East and parts of Asia.

Terrorist networks branch out of Afghanistan and the Middle East. Some enjoy the support of certain governments. Most have caused widespread suffering among their own people.

We all know Islam does not advocate violence. All religions today call for tolerance, justice, and compassion.

We must resist the temptation to blame entire nations, religions, or peoples for the actions of a small number of political extremists. And if it develops that certain governments have supported the terrorist conspiracy, we should remember that these regimes hold power in their countries by terror and violence - they are not supported by the majority of their citizens or neighbors.

The attacks against New York and the Pentagon also killed many Muslims and Arab-Americans, innocent victims like the rest of the casualties. The tragedy that befell our brothers and sisters in America is already impacting on the lives of many Arabs and Muslims all over the world.

Arab and Muslim Americans are now being labeled "enemies" and are harassed. They are already feeling hostility growing around them from their non-Arab and Non-Muslim neighbors.

The Palestinian dream of a homeland has been done irreparable damage by this act. Today in the Palestinian world, there are countless numbers of citizens who desperately desire peace and stability in their communities, who want a solution where they can raise their children in a decent life, and who wish Americans no harm. Those who led a groups of Palestinians to the street to dance and celebrate at the death of thousands of innocent people in America, under the watch of international television cameras, have harmed these people more than any of them could have imagined.

Europeans of Mediterranean complexion will also be suspected and face hostility, police search, interrogation and humiliation. I know that from now on when I check in at an American or European airport, or walk into an airport or hotel lounge, many eyes will turn to me. I know I will be stopped, searched, questioned. But I will understand.

We should remember that Islamic terrorist groups in Algeria have murdered at least 100,000 innocent Algerian women and children in the last 10 years alone. These victims were not Americans or Christians. They were devout poor Muslims.

Pursuing an effective counter-terrorism campaign, the Algerian authorities have managed to cause severe disruption in the terrorist network.

The target and the victims of the terrorist groups in Afghanistan are fellow Afghans, and the same can be said of Sudan.

As we gather today, leaders and peoples of many different convictions, we are saying no to all forms of violence, intolerance and terrorism. In bringing the perpetrators of this heinous crime to justice, we hope that we can, once more, bring down a network of terror, and that there will be no more innocent victims. The cycle of violence must end.

To my American brothers and sisters, speaking as someone who has lived in and known your country for many years, I join with my East Timorese compatriots in mourning your loved ones, and appeal to you not to allow your anger to betray your compassion. Do not despair. Keep the faith, and America will be ever greater.

Dr. José Ramos-Horta,
East Timor

Topics | Last Day | Last Week | Tree View | Search | Help/Instructions | Program Credits Administration