2009 Ambassador P P T


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  • PWR is world’s largest interreligious gathering. About 10,000 people are expected to attend next Parliament, to be held in Melbourne December 3-9 2009. Parliament is popular event. Anyone can attend – not a body of official delegates or representatives. Not a legislative body purpose of today’s focus group: to ask for your input about how to create an event that reflects the character and aspirations of Australian religious and spiritual communities and which will make a lasting contribution to Australia and the world the Parliament is more than an event … it’s also a process and a mechanism which religious and spiritual communities in Melbourne and across Australia can begin to use straight away to promote better relations and foster positive social change. note strong Indigenous flavour of logo, will be an important element of the Parliament, and Parliament activities – acknowledge local owners of the land Before we begin asking questions, short powerpoint presentation about the history of the Parliament which will provide a context for our discussion.
  • First Parliament held in Chicago as part of the Columbian Exposition, celebrating 400 years of Western culture in America Began on September 11, 1893, attended by over 4,000 people, lasted 17 days Regarded as birth of formal international interreligious dialogue – first formal dialogue in history between spiritual traditions of East and West “ Star” of the Parliament was Hindu Swami Vivekananda. Concept was ahead of its time – refer to wars, genocide of 20 th century However, Vivekananda established a Hindu organisation in Chicago which still exists –Vedantist Society – played a pivotal role in renaissance of the Parliament [NB. Bill thinks man on bottom left is Frederick Bonner, Chairperson]
  • 1988 – couple of Swamis from the Vivekananda Centre suggested holding a centennial event in Chicago in 1993. Expected about 1000 people, mainly, scholars, looking back on the 1893 Parliament Formed an organising body called the Council for the Parliament of the World’s Religions So successful that had to close registrations when reached 8,000 people, of whom 3,200 came from outside the US Decided to hold a Parliament once every five years in a different city NB. Monk on bottom left is Ven Thich Nhat Hanh, famous Vietnamese Zen monk. Dirk, who are the guys bottom right?
  • Cape Town, South Africa Chosen largely because of the role of the interreligious movement in overcoming apartheid, promoting reconciliation 7,000 participants, half from South Africa, half international Nb pics: Nelson Mandela, Dalai Lama, Chief Jake Swamp of the Mohawk Nation
  • held in Barcelona, Spain Chosen through formal bid process More sober atmosphere than previous Parliaments, due to 9/11 and Madrid train bombings (4 months before the Parliament) 450 program events over 7 days and nights. Included dialogues, lectures, workships, symposia, performances, exhibits, plenaries, opening and closing ceremonies, religious observances, films, educational programs, offsite programs.
  • [Mikael, are you able to import a couple of photos onto this page – maybe the model of the new Convention Centre and one Indigenous??] Melbourne winning bidder of 15 cities. Why? Multicultural, multifaith, commitment to multiculturalism, reconciliation with Indigenous communities. Initiatives since 9/11 – local multifaith groups with council support, police multifaith, etc. Parliament events will focus around new Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre, due for completion early 2009,which will have 5000 seat plenary hall, 32 meeting rooms, and foyer able to host 8400. Will also use other city venues, plus off site events, field visits etc. around Melbourne and Victoria. Parliament expected to attract 8,000 – 12,000 people, several thousand from overseas. First Parliament to be held in Asia Pacific region, and will focus on attracting people from the region as well as North America etc.
  • Arose from the experience of the 1993 Parliament. Go through one by one, because have found that address many of questions, concerns people have Point 3 – explain that not a Parliament in the legislative or formal sense of word, but a safe place to talk
  • 450 program events over 6 days means that at any one time there are about 20 events occurring in parallel. Definition of programs – can be lectures, dialogues, w orkshops , symposia, performances, exhibits etc. Morning observances: participants can attend observance from their own or another tradition. No compulsory or large scale “shared” religious observances. Intra-religious track – an opportunity to learn about the teachings, practices and dynamics of specific religious and spiritual communities eg “The Global Faces of Buddhism”, “Judaism and Justice”, “Native People and Environmental Justice” Interreligious track – structured opportunities for dialogue with a wide range of panel discussions from a variety of religious and spiritual perspectives eg “Praying Together?”, “Peace Initiatives to Bridge the Hindu-Muslim Divide”, “Does the Media Promote Interreligious Dialogue?” Engagement track – successful programs and initiatives that are making a difference around the world eg “Ford Interfaith Network: a model for faith in corporate workplaces”, “The role of Museums in the Interreligious Movement for Dialogue and Understanding”, “Religions Collaborate for Peace: the Guatemalan model” Open space programs – Free time or opportunity to engage with participants on topics of special interest. Spaces also available for meetings of groups, organisations or delegations. Plenaries – included opening and closing ceremonies, celebrations of the local and international nterreligious movements, sacred music concert, communities night, and regional night.
  • 2009 Ambassador P P T

    1. 1. <ul><li>‘ There will be no world peace until there is peace among the religions.’ Hans Küng </li></ul>
    2. 3. Why hold a Parliament of the World’s Religions? <ul><li>To realise that we are all interconnected and that religion and spirituality can be a positive force for change </li></ul><ul><li>So we can respectfully share our religious, spiritual and faith based knowledge and ideas with others </li></ul><ul><li>So we can engage in discussion, consultation and active listening with those of varying religious and spiritual backgrounds </li></ul><ul><li>So we can act with new knowledge, awareness and enthusiasm to ‘make a world of difference’ </li></ul>
    3. 4. 1893 Parliament of the World’s Religions <ul><li>Held in Chicago, September 1893 </li></ul><ul><li>Birth of international interreligious dialogue </li></ul><ul><li>“ Star” speaker was Swami Vivekananda </li></ul>
    4. 5. 1893 Parliament of the World’s Religions <ul><li>Held in Chicago, September 1893 </li></ul><ul><li>Birth of international interreligious dialogue </li></ul><ul><li>“ Star” speaker was Swami Vivekananda </li></ul>
    5. 6. 1993 Parliament of the World’s Religions <ul><li>Initiated by the Vivekananda Centre, Chicago </li></ul><ul><li>Intended as a one-off centennial event </li></ul><ul><li>Exceeded all expectations </li></ul>
    6. 7. 1999 Parliament of the World’s Religions <ul><li>Cape Town, South Africa </li></ul><ul><li>Theme: The role of the interreligious movement in defeating apartheid and promoting reconciliation </li></ul><ul><li>7,000 participants </li></ul>
    7. 8. 2004 Parliament of the World’s Religions <ul><li>Barcelona, Spain </li></ul><ul><li>Theme: Pathways to Peace </li></ul><ul><li>9,000 participants from 75 countries </li></ul><ul><li>450 program events over 7 days </li></ul>
    8. 9. 2009 Parliament of the World’s Religions <ul><li>Melbourne chosen through formal bid process </li></ul><ul><li>Location: New Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre </li></ul><ul><li>8,000 – 12,000 people </li></ul>
    9. 10. ORGANISING PRINCIPLES OF THE PARLIAMENT <ul><li>Promotes interreligious harmon y , rather than unity </li></ul><ul><li>Based on convergence of purpose, rather than consensus of belief and practice </li></ul><ul><li>Operates through facilitation (rather than formal structure) </li></ul><ul><li>Seeks to build trust as much as agreement </li></ul>
    10. 11. Major topics <ul><li>The 2009 Parliament in Melbourne will address a number of crucial topics from religious and spiritual perspectives. </li></ul><ul><li>Healing the Earth with Care and Concern </li></ul><ul><li>Reconciling with the Indigenous Peoples </li></ul><ul><li>Overcoming Poverty in a Patriarchal World </li></ul><ul><li>Creating Social Cohesion in Village and City </li></ul><ul><li>Sharing Wisdom in the Search for Inner Peace </li></ul><ul><li>Securing Food and Water for All People </li></ul><ul><li>Building Peace in the Pursuit of Justice </li></ul>
    11. 12. Program Overview <ul><li>Over seven days, participants will choose from over 450 activities, including daily morning observances of many traditions, intrareligious and interreligious programs, models of engagement, symposia, performances, open space dialogue and exhibits. </li></ul>
    12. 13. Day at a glance TIME SESSION FORMAT 8:00 – 9:00 MORNING OBSERVANCES Meditations, prayers, reflections 9:00 – 9:30 BREAK 9:30 – 11:00 SESSION A “ Religious and Spiritual Communities Share Their Stories” INTRARELIGIOUS Primarily single-tradition panel presentations 11:00–11:30 BREAK 11:30 - 1:00 SESSION B “ Religious and Spiritual Communities Dialogue with Each Other” INTERRELIGIOUS Primarily multiple-tradition panel presentations and facilitated dialogues 1:00 – 2:30 LUNCH 2:30 – 4:00 SESSION C “ Religious and Spiritual Communities Work Together” ENGAGEMENT Primarily facilitated dialogues, workshops and multi-religious panels 4:00 – 4:30 BREAK 4:30 – 6:00 OPEN SPACE / GATHERINGS ENCOUNTER Open space, dialogues 6:00 – 7:30 BREAK 7:30 – 9:00 PLENARY CELEBRATION Arts & evocative presentations
    13. 14. Observances <ul><li>Each morning will begin with observances from diverse religious and spiritual traditions. </li></ul>
    14. 15. Intra-Religious: Hearing each other <ul><li>Speakers from a single religious tradition express their identities, discuss their challenges and showcase their messages. </li></ul><ul><li>Some include: </li></ul><ul><li>Australian Aboriginal spirituality; New religious movements – Perspectives on spiritual presence; Christian churches of Australia; Orthodoxy in Australia; Multiple voices of Islam; Hinduism and political leadership; Confucian humanism, Indigenous traditions and sacred sites; Christianity and ecology; Asian religions and ecology on the ground; Confronting religious extremism; Pilgrimages and religious tourism. </li></ul>
    15. 16. Inter-Religious <ul><li>Speakers from two or more religious traditions engage with each other seeking greater understanding. </li></ul><ul><li>Some include: </li></ul><ul><li>Australian interfaith initiatives; Role of minority religions; Social cohesion in Australia; Divine feminine; Interfaith dialogue and peacemaking; Jewish interreligious work; Gender and peacebuilding; Religious women and development; Healing the earth; Science and religion; Access to food and water; Religious ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility; Interfaith peacebuilding; Right relationships; Perspectives on the family; Cultivating insight; Sustainable living; Interfaith marriages; End of life concerns. </li></ul>
    16. 17. Engagement <ul><li>People from different religious traditions focus on how to work together to address leading topics practices for the earth. </li></ul><ul><li>Some include: </li></ul><ul><li>Inter-faith education; Conflict resolution; Inter-Faith action for peace in Africa; Perspectives on economic justice; Global sustainability; Millennium Development Goals; Human rights; Earth Charter as a global ethics; Religion and sport; Religion in cyberspace; Religion, HIV/AIDS and healthcare; Food and water, justice for all. </li></ul>
    17. 18. Open Space <ul><li>Informal discussions Regional gatherings. </li></ul><ul><li>Some include: </li></ul><ul><li>Receptions for international groups; Networking sessions; Special interest meetings. Interfaith groups such as: Religions for Peace, United Religions Initiative </li></ul>
    18. 19. Activities <ul><li>Pre-Parliament Events are being held in over 60 cities internationally. </li></ul><ul><li>During the Parliament there will be activities specifically for the youth and indigenous peoples, performances, exhibitions as well as off-site events in the local and regional area. </li></ul>
    19. 20. Plenary Sessions
    20. 21. Participation <ul><li>Register to attend </li></ul><ul><li>Bring a group of students </li></ul><ul><li>Volunteer before and during the 2009 Parliament </li></ul><ul><li>Organise or sponsor a delegation. Receive 10% discount for a group of 10 or more. </li></ul><ul><li>Attend a Pre-Parliament event in your area </li></ul><ul><li>Sponsor an individual or group who otherwise would not be able to attend. </li></ul><ul><li>   </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    21. 22. Legacy <ul><li>Personal transformation </li></ul><ul><li>Commitments to sustainable long term outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Forward progression of the local interreligious movement </li></ul><ul><li>Global interreligious movement </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement with the critical issues </li></ul>