I attended my first official interfaith event last week. Of course I've been to events with people of different beliefs, but this was the first one advertised as interfaith.
This event was a meditation that was a combination of two different events at my church, Unity North Atlanta. UNA typically has a meditation every Wednesday night, but last week, the Tibetan Buddhist Monks of Drepung Loseling Monastary's Mystical Arts of Tibet tour were there all week constructing a sand mandala (talk about cool!). In order to combine the two, an interfaith event was created and other speakers were contacted.
The event was comprised of three speakers, a Quaker, a Sufi, and of course, a Buddhist monk. Each spoke of what their religion considered meditation to be, and then led a sample meditation. For the Quaker, this meant a silent meditation followed by a few minutes of fellowship. For the Sufi, this was a drumming meditation. The monk, with a huge smile and lots of hand motions, described in halting English not only what Buddhist meditation was, but its purpose, leading all the way back to the physical and mental effects on your one's life. Then, a handful of monks chanted as their form of meditation.
One of the most interesting points of this event was the comparison of mediation at the end. While all three speakers had different ways to explain meditation, the purpose was always the same: peace and happiness in one's life and in the world.
I am happy to say that this will be the first of many interfaith events at UNA. :D
-A note on the mandala - This has to be one of the collest works of art I have ever seen!
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