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World Interfaith Harmony Week Observed in Russia

Russia-2016-02-06-World Interfaith Harmony Week Observed in Russia

Moscow, Russia—To mark World Interfaith Harmony Week, UPF held a roundtable for about 60 participants at its Peace Embassy in Moscow.

In the best Russian tradition, the bright, graceful, and rousing performance by Antonina Sinitsyna—"queen of the balalaika"—started the February 6 program, creating a joyful atmosphere of trust from the very beginning.

Dmitry Samko, secretary general of UPF-Moscow, as the master of ceremonies spoke about the activities that UPF carried out in Moscow during World Interfaith Harmony Week involving all the major religions of Russia.

In his speech, S.V. Dvoryanov, the director of the foundation Harmony and Light, said that in our time, a balance between politicians and people dedicated to the spiritual quest is especially relevant for creating and maintaining peace. Quoting the philosophers and poets of different times and nations, such as Saadi Sherozi, whose poems are engraved on the UN building, Ivan Ilyin, who wrote much about Russia’s mission in the historical perspective, and others, Mr. Dvoryanov spoke about the importance of interreligious dialogue in peacemaking.

Thereafter, Konstantin Krylov, the regional secretary general of UPF-Eurasia, spoke about UPF co-founder Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon and his initiatives for world peace in the framework of interreligious dialogue. Speaking about Dr. Moon's search from an early age for deep relations with God, his life that was devoted to building world peace, and the difficulties along the way, Mr. Krylov introduced the audience to the philosophical basis of all activities of the Universal Peace Federation.

An interesting statement was presented by M.Z. Khairetdinov, head of the Science Department at the Spiritual Administration of Muslims of the Russian Federation and a teacher of the Moscow Islamic Institute. He emphasized the importance of separating Islam from radicalism and terrorist organizations, since the real Islam is a very peaceful religion. The statement by Mr. Khairetdinov was frank and open; it aroused a huge, sincere interest among the participants.

In conclusion, actor, director, screenwriter, and cameraman O.A. Rudyuk sang the song "Prayer," thus declaring that peace is possible only with deep prayer, no matter in what language it is delivered and in what kind of tradition.

The atmosphere of general kindness, understanding, and cooperation permeated the entire meeting; both old friends and new acquaintances felt cozy and comfortable.

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