The 2015 Parliament of the World’s Religions, the oldest and largest interfaith gathering in the world, was held October 15-19th in Salt Lake City. Some 10,000 participants from 50 spiritual traditions participated. The event was first held in Chicago in 1893. This year’s gathering focused on peace, climate change, and women in leadership. Imam Malik Mujahid, who chairs the Parliament’s board of trustees, described the event and why he believes it is important for people of faith to gather in solidarity and believe in “the humanity of the other.”
IMAM MALIK MUJAHID: People of faith, people who believe in God and religion, we work with each other to create harmony between the faith communities. If war, hate and terrorism are rising, it's important people of love and faith rise with human relationships, and that's the reason we have record attendance and record number of programs this year.
We have people from 50 faiths, 80 nations, 10, 000 people, and each one of them has a network, and that network works with the other people, and that’s how we think we are going to change the world.
We are focusing on three critical issues. We have Women Assembly happening for the first time in the Parliament, and I’m very happy to share with this that 60 percent of all of attendees are women. It’s the first time we have achieved that. And we have a very big summit of indigenous people from across nations.
But when it comes to critical issues, there is no major issue than the climate change.
(Speaking to Parliament audience): Let us engage the guiding institution. Let us work together for a better world, a world with peace, justice, a world which is sustainable.
This is the only earth we have. And as God’s creation, it is important that not only we live a life of less wastefulness, we share more and consume less. But at the same time, our media, our business, our government adopt policies and practices which are good for the climate change.
Faith is something that is quite connected at the grass roots. So faith and religion are respected in the eyes of a whole lot of people. When they speak up, there is a whole lot of world that listens to them, including people who are policy makers.