Inter-Religious Council at the United Nations Consultation:

Comments from the audience about the inter-religious council were varied and informed.

1)      That we should have a Petition at each of the consultations and promote an Early Day Motion among MPs.

2)      How do we prevent religious leaders aggrandising against states or states imposing laws on religions?

3)      The religious process will inevitably become politicised.

4)      How can we get non-religious people to accept the importance of spiritual and religious values?

5)      What are the objections? Good to analyse them and respond

6)      The power of politics can influence minds but religion can change the hearts of people to affect the quality of relationships between people, communities and nations.

7)      The UN is an assembly of nations largely without power therefore the power at the national level should be developed through Inter-Religious Council’s at the nation state level. Who can choose the faith representative for the United Nations? It could be chosen at the national level through the national IRC.

8)      There will need to be a nation by nation strategy for national lobbying for the IRC.

9)      Begin here in the UK to establish a prototype.

10)  We must develop mutual trust. We live in multicultural society but we need to reflect on and evaluate or even challenge our own faiths.

11)  Thanked UPF for this initiative. The UN is becoming distant from its people and needs to find a way to serve the people. Such a council could help to bring the UN closer to the people.

12)  Faith is getting a bad name for causing wars and conflicts. However it is regional politics that are causing conflicts. Therefore the IRC would improve the understanding of the role of religions.

13)  While faith in God is the key we must break it down into constituent parts. Such elements as stewardship, human development, will emerge from those parts. The wording of the mission statement will develop from this analysis.

14)  The IRC could improve the understanding of faiths like the confusion when African indigenous religions are classified as being polytheistic when many are monotheistic.

15)  How does an IRC appeal to non-religious people?

16)  An IRC could be set up in Scotland. How can this be accomplished?

17)  What would be the role of an IRC be?  Religion mixed with politics always gets into extremes.

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