September 2023
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F. Kwain: In Peacemaking, Bring Together All Stakeholders

We have witnessed a very serious decline in humanity's awareness of, appreciation for, and practice of universal spiritual and moral principles used as the foundation on which our contemporary world was formed. It is my hope that we can work together with more effort and dedication to solve the world's critical problems.

It is imperative that we understand the barriers that divide races, religions, nationalities, and cultures as we search for these solutions. Only through understanding the root of conflict can we direct our resources into the best programs and make the sustainable changes that are needed. I believe it is only when governments, religions and the United Nations come together under one roof that this first and most important step toward true world peace can be realized.

Politicians represent the secular world and all its needs. Religious leaders hold the wisdom and efforts in shaping almost all societies and culture around the world. The United Nations is working to become a mediator that can represent the interests of all humanity. In the spirit of cooperation, many solutions can be developed which will be sustainable and make way for building a culture of peace.

In the past, many decisions have been made to use costly politico-military operations to resolve conflicts without taking the time to understand what the roots of the conflicts were. Often the decision to take this action was based on the view of one party, be it religious, political or the UN itself. If the system was set up where all stakeholders could be represented, other alternatives could have been implemented.

The Secretary-General of the United Nations recognizes the need for preventative diplomacy and has recently coined a new term, "preventative action." The UN can only intervene in a conflict zone when the parties involved agree that it does so. This leads us back to the value of a partnership between governments, religious leaders, and the United Nations and to the point that without such cooperation no true solutions can be reach.

We need to see the combined efforts of all religious leaders to bring to the table their suggestions and the highest expressions of religious wisdom in an effort to support the implementation of such a system of cooperation. We come from different religious backgrounds. Our understandings of the causes of human suffering do not have the same frame of reference. Our ways of seeking world peace are diverse. But we still have a common ground of trying to solve problems in the context of our relationship with the Ultimate.