January 2011

Doctrine Divides, Action Unites



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 Indonesia’s Marginalized Faiths
Umi Farida
Through a series of stories from participants at workshops on indigenous religions held in Tegal District of Central Java and Kuningan District in West Java, the author describes the contradiction between the religious freedom proclaimed in the Constitution of Indonesia, as well as Indonesia’s U.N. human rights commitments, and the discrimination experienced by the country’s indigenous people whose faiths fall outside of the perimeters set by the nation’s laws. [Read more]

 A New and Multilingual Nepal
Shree Ram Chaudhari
As the political leaders of Nepal continue to wrestle with writing a new Constitution, the author notes an issue that must receive attention if the country’s numerous ethnic communities are to truly feel part of the social fabric of the nation and a respected member of the new proposed federal structure—official recognition of the multiple languages they speak. [Read more]

 Natural Punishment
Hor Hen
The author reflects over the decades of his life and notes the less than positive changes that have taken place that are oftentimes proclaimed as progress and development. [Read more]

  Being a Muslim and Being a Feminist Are Not Mutually Exclusive
Fatemeh Fakhraie
“There are echoes of Islam and feminism in each other,” observes the author in this article in which she explains what these echoes are. [Read more]

 Promoting Interfaith Relationships for Dr. King’s Birthday
Larry Hufford
The importance of multifaith education and dialogue is emphasized as imperative today in the United States and elsewhere around the world in a reflection the author wrote for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday on Jan. 15 several years ago, a reflection that contains the thoughts of Muslims, Jews, Christians and Buddhists living in the Asia-Pacific region that the author encountered at an academic conference in Australia. [Read more]

  Torture Me
A Bhopal Survivor
Today it is estimated that at least 20,000 people have died since the night of Dec. 2, 1984, when 40 tons of methyl isocyanate and other poisonous gases leaked from the Union Carbide factory in Bhopal, India. Moreover, several hundred thousand more people today still require medical attention. This poem, which is included in the first book jointly produced by the Center for JustPeace in Asia (CJPA) and Interfaith Cooperation Forum (ICF)—Our Stories, Our Challenges: The Search for JustPeace in Asia Today—summarizes the experiences of those who were in Bhopal that deadly night. [Read more]