Saturday, 13 June 2015

Interfaith Ramadan: Shared Vision of Inclusion & Co-Existence

Ramadan is a time when Muslim communities traditionally come together – to fast, to pray, to reflect, and to encourage one another. In that spirit, the Interfaith Ramadan blog series aims to extend that sense of community to people of all faiths and none. The series provides an inclusive platform where people from around the world share their experiences and offer their perspectives on interfaith issues. While recognizing the deep connections among the Abrahamic traditions, this series seeks to include a range of faith traditions, including groups often marginalised, overlooked, or ignored by society, the media, and perhaps even the interfaith community itself.

Started in 2013, Interfaith Ramadan is now in its third year. Originally, nearly all of the posts were written by me. Since then, however, new voices have been added each year, and 2015 will mark our most diverse year yet, with contributions from Wiccan, Buddhist, Hindu, Sikh, and ex-Muslim communities. Alongside this diversity of faiths and beliefs comes a broader range of topics, including LGBT advocacy in faith communities, efforts to empower minorities and women, and critiques of religious journalism and notions of charity. Contributors will offer a mix of challenging opinion pieces, heart-warming anecdotes, and thoughtful reflections while sharing their own unique styles of writing.

Such an inclusive platform is bound to result in areas on which writer and readers will disagree. It is my hope that this diversity of opinions will serve as a springboard for honest and open discussion. Given the global nature of Interfaith Ramadan, many of those conversations will happen on line and through social media. While challenging at times, there is no doubt that social media can be an incredible tool for cooperative, constructive and positive interactions between people from various faith/non-faith traditions and between those who hold widely divergent beliefs. This blog series reflects my hope-filled vision of inclusion and co-existence, rooted in the belief that when we come together with open heart and minds we can make life better for all. Thank you for sharing in that vision with me.

You can follow Interfaith Ramadan on TwitterFacebook, and by using the hashtags #IFRam2015 and #InterfaithRamadan, for general interfaith news stories in Ramadan.

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