“We have to sit down, have a meal together, pray together and then actually talk together. Then we realize that, yes, although we have some differences they are not impassable differences.”
~ Pauline Tangiora
Tangiora’s words resonate louder than ever in the world we live in today. The relevance of these words has grown visibly over the last few decades that have seen ethnic, racial and religious conflicts spreading fear, discord, and violence across the globe. India, also, is home to diverse religions, cultures, and people. As much as there is beauty in the diversity and coexistence, we often find ourselves constantly surrounded by stories of differences and disharmony, and fail to appreciate and celebrate this diversity. At such a time, it becomes crucial for everyone to come together to not only deconstruct these notions, hate messages and conflicts but also spread messages of love, understanding and religious harmony within their communities and society at large.
Agaaz-e-Baatcheet – a call to ‘initiate a conversation’ on Interfaith, is a programme being organized by Rubaroo, a youth development organization based in Hyderabad, India since 2013, that works with young people and people who influence them, inspiring leadership for social change. They are being supported by The British Deputy High Commission, Hyderabad. Agaaz-e-Baatcheet is a platform for young people to reflect deeply and interpret the underlying message of different faiths and identities, finding and celebrating the commonalities between them.
This will be done by engaging with 125 Youth Champions between the age group of 18-25 years from diverse socioeconomic religious and gender backgrounds in a month-long leadership journey through a series of activities including workshops on the theme of Interfaith and Identity, symposium with religious leaders of different faiths, conversations with peers from heterogeneous religious communities, and Social Action Projects (SAP). This journey will begin with a 3-day orientation workshop, followed by Social Action Projects to promote the objectives of togetherness and ownership during the Interfaith week followed by a closing ceremony and musical night.
The aim of Agaaz-e-Baatcheet is to enable the Youth Champions to develop a deeper understanding of their faith identity and build stronger relationships with people from different identities. The programme will also create an opportunity to establish the good practices for strengthening the relationship between people and organizations from different faiths.
The Interfaith week will also host a Photography Exhibition – HUMANS OF INTERFAITH , from 12th to 19th November 2017 in Hyderabad where photo entries from across India will be exhibited in various venues in Hyderabad. These vibrant, striking and communicative photographs from across India celebrating the spirit of interfaith, harmony, brotherhood, uniqueness of different cultures, and their similarities will resonate with the messages of love and religious harmony.
Rubaroo | TOC
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