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> 2013-10-28 18:03:27
Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue congratulates Hindus upon the feastival of Deepavali
The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has sent a message to the Hindu faithful on the occasion of the festival of Deepavali which will be celebrated on November 3rd this year. The festival signifies the victory of good over evil. Below is the full text of the message.
Dear Hindu Friends,
1. In a spirit of friendship, the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue
extends to you best wishes and cordial greetings as you celebrate Deepavali on 3
November next. May God, the source of all light and life, illumine your lives and
deepen your happiness and peace.
2. In this highly competitive world where increasingly individualistic and
materialistic tendencies adversely affect human relationships and often create
divisions in families and society as a whole, we wish to share our thoughts on
how Christians and Hindus can foster human relationships for the good of all
humanity through friendship and solidarity.
3. Relationships are fundamental to human existence. Security and peace in
the local, national and international communities are largely determined by the
quality of our human interaction. Experience teaches us that, the deeper our
human relationships, the more we are able to advance towards cooperation,
peace-building, genuine solidarity and harmony. In short, the ability to foster
respectful relationships is the measure of authentic human progress and essential
for promoting peace and integral development.
4. Such relationships ought to flow naturally from our shared humanity.
Indeed, human relationships are at the heart of human existence and its progress
and naturally give rise to a sense of solidarity with others. Regardless of our
ethnic, cultural, religious and ideological differences, all of us belong to the one
5. Sadly, with the increase of materialism in society and a growing disregard
for deeper spiritual and religious values, there now exists a dangerous trend to
accord the same value to material things as to human relationships, thereby
reducing the human person from a ‘someone’ to a ‘something’ that can be cast
aside at will. Furthermore, individualistic tendencies engender a false sense of
security and favour what His Holiness Pope Francis has described as ‘a culture
of exclusion’, ‘a throwaway culture’ and ‘a globalization of indifference’.
6. The promotion of a ‘culture of relationship’ and ‘a culture of solidarity’ is
thus imperative for all peoples, and calls for the fostering of relationships based
on friendship and mutual respect for the benefit of the entire human family. This
requires a common recognition and promotion of the intrinsic dignity of the
human person. It is evident then that friendship and solidarity are closely related.
In the end, a “culture of solidarity means seeing others not as rivals or statistics,
but brothers and sisters” (Pope Francis, Visit to the Community of Varginha
(Manguinhos), Rio de Janeiro, 25 July 2013).
7. Finally, we wish to state our conviction that a culture of solidarity can only
be achieved as “the fruit of a concerted effort on the part of all, in service of the
common good” (Pope Francis, Meeting with Brazil’s Leaders of Society, Rio de
Janeiro, 27 July 2013). Sustained by the teachings of our respective religions and
aware of the importance of building genuine relationships, may we, Hindus and
Christians, work individually and collectively, with all religious traditions and
people of good will, to foster and strengthen the human family through friendship
and solidarity. We wish you a happy celebration of Deepavali!
Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran
Father Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot, MCCJ