Hindu statesman Rajan Zed has described Pope Francis’s reported declination to meet Dalai Lama as “a sad day for interfaith dialogue”.
Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, pointed out that religious leader of Pope’s standing with about 1.2 billion followers, should be more focused on bringing the diverse faiths together instead of falling prey to petty diplomacy. Turning down a well-intentioned meeting request from a well-known leader of another world religion was clearly a missed opportunity in the inter-religious dialogue.
Rajan Zed stressed that serious and honest interfaith dialogue was the need of the hour and Pope Francis should lead it instead of shying away from it. Inter-religious dialogue might help us vanquish the stereotypes, prejudices, caricatures, etc., passed on to us from previous generations, Zed added.
Zed further said that Pope Francis should re-evaluate his priorities and place interfaith dialogue on the top of the list aiming at bringing all humanity together on issues of common religious concerns like human improvement, peace, ecological responsibility, social & economic development, etc.
In our shared pursuit for the truth, we could learn from one another, Rajan Zed noted.