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Presenting at Parliament of the World's Religions

The world came to Toronto this November for the seventh global Parliament of the World's Religions. Founded in 1893 in Chicago, the Parliament is credited with launching the modern formal interfaith dialogue movement. Over 7,400 participants from almost every faith and nation attended. I am honoured to have presented at two workshops.

 

 

Storytelling in Interfaith Engagement


As a woman whose mission is storytelling for peace, I appreciate the powerful role of personal stories in interfaith engagement. I shared my own experience of realising God as our global father when I was a child. I'm pleased to meet you — I am your sister. I also shared the poem, Let's Be Soldiers in the Army of Love, which expresses my dream for Israelis and Palestinians to realise their common heritage and future through poetry, which sometimes breaks through barriers that conflict has erected. Co-panelists Rebecca Prows and Andra Baylus shared how stories have helped them build interfaith harmony and explore others' faiths.

“Thank you. You inspired me that I can use my talents to share stories of peace too." — Participant at the storytelling panel

 

Dances for Peace – Crazy or Conducive?

If anyone doubts that dance contributes to interfaith peace, they weren't at the Parliament of the World's Religions! Every day planned and spontaneous dances erupted in workshops and in the halls; it was infectious! But can dances lead to peace between people who are in conflict, or between disparate communities that don't always understand each other? In this interactive workshop, we elicited the wisdom in the room to explore the possibilities, challenges, cultural sensitivities and personal experiences of dancing for peace. Contributions included:

  • "Thank you for reminding me that dance is essential to me"
  • Children as young as 4 report not liking or shyness about dancing
  • Many participants love Dances of Universal Peace
  • I just discovered 5 Rhythms dance, which gets me directly into the present, the physical, and invariably brings me peace. Look for a circle near you, or practice with this playlist at home.

 

If you have a faith perspective, experience, or can recommend an uplifting song for our PositiveSpin playlist, please add your contributions to the Dances for Peace Google Sheet.

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