The Boundaries Of Interfaith Harmony.
By Talha Masood
Interfaith harmony is an expression of a civilised society Where everyone values and respects the diversity of thought and action while simultaneously maintains the honesty and uniqueness of their own identities. For every faith cherishes the progress of its followers in this world and in the hereafter. So it does not belittle any person regardless of their belief in its ideology. Consequently, every 22nd of August is globally celebrated as the International Day to commemorate the victims of acts of violence based on religion or belief, and require us all to take some time and think over how can we make our respective societies more tolerant towards minority religions.
It is indeed a sad reality that no matter how hard we try, religious conflicts arise to disrupt our every attempt at establishing interfaith harmony. However, it should also be acknowledged that notwithstanding those miscreants who benefit from such conflicts, most of us who harbour a desire for peace within our societies are often able to engage in conferences, seminars, and social media forums to create awareness with respect to the religious rights of minorities. Even so, in terms of effect and influence, we End up as mere bystanders who just helplessly watch and do nothing. When in truth, each and every one of us has the responsibility of acquiring the true understanding of our religions and leave no stone unturned in the dissemination of their actual message of not causing unnecessary offence to anyone.
Additionally, those of us who do manage to create some semblance of interfaith harmony, do so at the cost of blurring the boundaries between their own belief system and the one they are trying to harmonise with. It is one thing to respect and value another religious community as fully functional and recognised part of our society, and quite another to compromise your own identity in trying to consolidate interfaith harmony. For instance, it has been seen that often in events of interfaith harmony one community would try to compromise its own beliefs and even practices to be looked upon with the favour by others. By no means can this be appreciated as interfaith harmony. For it fails to serve the purpose and allow the miscreants to manipulate masses by merely pointing out that such harmony is impossible owing to the fact that we cannot refrain from merging with other communities one way or another. This And eventually, they begin to manipulate people’s religious devotion to wreak havoc upon the innocent and to cause general mayhem in the society. When this happens, most of us very conveniently get outraged and throw the entire blame on to the miscreants, not realising that primarily it was due to our own ignorance in not maintaining the boundaries of interfaith harmony that the miscreants were able to exploit the opportunity which we presented them with.
In essence dear reader, let us not forget that the most fundamental principle of interfaith harmony dictates that with pride in our hearts for our own faith, and with the firm conviction in its truth, we are to be most respectful and understanding towards other communities who foster similar feelings for their own ideologies. For every religion pursues what it deems true of its ideology; and as such, if we begin to blur the boundaries of interfaith harmony we not only disrespect every religion but also demonstrate our own imprudence and irrationality with regards to our own. So let’s be kind and considerate gentle and generous towards all communities! But be faithfully proud and upright with respect to our own!