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This an initial overview of the course on "Humanity;s search for a meaningful life." The different perspective of great individuals who had impact on human's way of thinking and beliefs system are presented, leading to ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue.
HUMANITY’S SEARCH FOR LIFE
HUMANITY’S SEARCH FOR LIFE
• HUMANITY – NOUN (plural humanities)
1. The human race; human beings collectively:Environmental destruction is an appalling crime against
humanity2. The fact or condition of being human; human nature: Music is the universal language with which we can express our common humanity3. Humaneness; benevolence; kindness or compassion for othersHe praised them for their standards of humanity, care, and dignity4. (humanities) Learning or literature concerned with human culture, especially literature, history, art, music, and philosophy.
• Different from any kind of life
Only human being searches for a meaningful existenceRemember the previous activity?
You are more than those meaningful symbols.
All those symbols however marvellous and amazing they may seem, still fall short in relation to the REAL YOU.
Ecumenism - The principle or aim of promoting unity among the world’s Christian Churches.
• Interreligious dialogue
All people of good will
World’s Religious Tradtions
WithinChurch/esWithin the Church/es
World’s Living Faith
All people of good will
Ecumenical effort• The Latest
Common Declaration of Pope Francis and the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I"Our fraternal encounter today is a new and necessary step on the journey towards the unity to which only the Holy Spirit can lead us, that of communion in legitimate diversity"
POPE FRANCIS HAS INVITED THE PRESIDENT OF PALESTINE MAHMOUD ABBAS AND THE PRESIDENT OF ISRAEL SHIMON PERES TO MEET AT HIS HOUSE IN THE VATICAN AND PRAY FOR PEACE
Whatever be one’s philosophy in life or faith belief, it affects LIFE• Deepening of the Opening Prayer (Acts 16:22-34)
Paul and Silas Human experience speaks about LIFELife is not without struggles and pains.
It speaks about FAITH. How their faith leads them to real freedom even if they are in prison.
How this human experience could relate to us?
Prison – unfreedom, weaknesses, timidity and fear
Earthquake – threatens the foundation of life
Perspectives on life as exemplified by some Personalitiesof different faith traditions
1. Siddhartha Gautama - Buddha
“If a man lives a pure life, nothing can destroy him. To live a pure unselfish life, one must count nothing as one's own in the midst of abundance. Without health life is not life; it is only a state of langour and suffering - an image of death.
The goal was not to live a completely worldly life, nor was it to live a life in complete denial of the physical body, but to live in a “middle way”. The way out of suffering was through concentration, and since the mind is connected to the body, denying the body would hamper concentration,
just as overindulgence would distract one from concentration”.
2. Lao Tzu
“Human life, like everything else in the universe, is constantly influenced by outside forces. He believed “simplicity” to be the key to truth and freedom.
2. Lao Tzu
“He believed “simplicity” to be the key to truth and freedom. Lao Tzu encouraged his followers to observe, and seek to understand the laws of nature; to develop intuition and build up personal power; and to use that power to lead life with love, and without force”.
It is important to be in accord with the Tao. The Tao is the mystery of the cosmos, the ultimate reality, the substance and the vital principle underlying the way of the cosmos and the way of human life. (Wostyn, 2004)
Tao is the “eternally nameless” - (Dao De Jing-32. Laozi)
3. ConfuciusHuman self is a node not an entity. The self is a meeting place where lives intersect.
Reciprocity or shu impels propriety that has to be manifested in the basic relationships of society (Wostyn, 2004).
3. ConfuciusThere are three life cycles: youth, maturity and old age. For each cycle, one must guard oneself from those that deprive harmony with life,namely, the youth against lust; the matured against strife and the old against avarice.
and music can aid the final harmonization with the WAY is necessary if the old person is to die in content. (Carmody, 1982)
Poetry can harmonize basic emotions, ritual can be a structure for forming and expressing the character of the mature persons,
4. MuhammadLife is oneness. (Wostyn, 2004)
Human life ought to comprise a unity and not be departmentalized.
4. MuhammadLife is oneness. At the heart of it is the oneness or tawid of Allah. Because Allah is one, to feel the reality of Allah is to bring a peace-giving unity and powerful focus to one’s life. Believing in and feeling Allah, one is centered, rooted, concentrated. (Wostyn, 2004)
Human life ought to comprise a unity and not be departmentalized; everything originates from the one God, worship of whom is the human being’s primary purpose; God has given human beings guidance through the lines of prophets that Muhammad completes. (Carmody, 1982)
5. Mohandas Gandhi
An advocate of simple living, Gandhi ate a vegetarian diet and made his own clothes; the spinning wheel became a symbol of his uncluttered lifestyle.He lived a spiritual and ascetic life of prayer, fasting, and meditation. His union with his wife became, as he himself stated, that of a brother and sister. Refusing earthly possessions, he wore the loincloth and shawl of the lowliest Indian and subsisted on vegetables, fruit juices, and goat's milk.
Gandhi's advocacy of nonviolence, known as ahimsa (non-violence), was the expression of a way of life implicit in the Hindu religion.
5. Mahatma (great-souled)
Indians revered him as a saint and began to call him Mahatma (great-souled), a title reserved for the greatest sages.
6. John Baptist de La Salle“Man/Woman had a destiny, and the teacher was to inculcate this truth by cultivating and developing the theological virtues in the souls of the children”.
SUMMARIZING THE PERSPECTIVES
What are the main perspectives presented?
How are they different or similar with one another?