Her Holiness Shinso Ito has repeatedly taught that the goal of interfaith dialogue must be for different faiths to learn from one another. Shinnyo-en believes that people of faith need to explore together how their practices empower, individually and together, to transform this world of suffering into a world of harmony and understanding.
As an advocate of inter-faith understanding, Shinnyo-en Singapore has been organising inter-faith dialogues among leaders of differing faiths. This is part of Shinnyo-en’s efforts to promote racial and religious harmony by providing a platform for all to have a better understanding about the various faiths in Singapore.
The first dialogue session, as part of Shinnyo-en Singapore’s inter-faith speakers series was on Islam, with Ustadh Leyaket Ali as the guest speaker, on 30 November 2013. Ustadh Leyaket Ali spoke about how Islam is practised in daily lives and what Islam teaches about happiness. It was a fruitful session for all participants as they learnt more about the religion Islam.
The second in the series was on Taoism with Master Chung Kwang Tong from the Taoist Federation which took place on 29 March 2014. Master Chung Kwang Tong spoke about the Taoist religion and how it is practised in daily lives.
Master Chung Kwang Tong from the Taoist Federation sheds light on the Taoist religion
‘Many Rivers, One Ocean’ – an Inter-Faith Sharing on Significance of Water
Water Symposium, 24 November 2013 at Furama City Centre Hotel
With the shared aim of promoting harmony through a better appreciation of water and its religious applications, Shinnyo-en Singapore and its partners at the Inter-Religious Organisation (IRO), Ba’alwie Mosque Singapore and the Taoist Federation, jointly organised the first Water Symposium to encourage active inter-faith sharing.
Mr Abdullah Tarmugi, former Speaker of Parliament, was the Guest of Honour. He spoke at length about the importance of awareness of water issues and its understanding in religious use.
The speakers for the symposium were Imam Syed Hassan Al-Attas from Ba’alwie Mosque, Master Chung Kwang Tong from the Taoist Federation and Reverend Minoru Shitara from Shinnyo-en. All of the speakers provided meaningful and unique religious perspectives.
The event objective of inter-faith sharing was met as participants were enlightened and they left with a much better appreciation of the critical role that water has in different religions and how it can bond people together.
The Guest-of-Honour, Mr Abdullah Tarmugi giving the opening speech
Imam Syed Hassan Al-Attas, the religious leader from Muslim faith
Master Chung Kwang Tong, the religious leader from Taoist Federation
The panellists during the Q&A session
On 23rd May – 27th May, Shinnyo-en invited a group of religious leaders from Singapore to participate in the 16th Hawaii Lantern Floating ceremony in Hawaii, United States of America. This was the first time that we had invited influential inter-religious representatives from Singapore.
The religious leaders were from different faiths including Islam, Hindu, Sikh and Baha’i. The leaders were given the invaluable opportunity to participate in the Hawaii Lantern Floating Ceremony, led by Her Holiness Shinso Ito. They had also the chance to meet and greet with Her Holiness Shinso Ito at the Hawaii Convention Centre where there was an exchange of ideas and opinions on the importance of inter-faith in contributing to world peace.
As part of the trip, they visited the Hawaii Shinnyo-en temple where they learnt more about the beliefs of Shinnyo-en and its practices.
In all, it was an educational trip where the religious leaders had a good experience learning more about Shinnyo-en and the significance of the Hawaii Lantern Floating ceremony.
The Religious representatives for the 2014 Hawaii Lantern Floating
Gift exchange with leaders from the Muslim faith, Mr Syed Ahmed Al-Attas and Sikh faith, Mr Harbans Singh
Religious leaders from Singapore with their lanterns
Download Water Symposium Pamphlet