February 02, 2017, 5:31 PM
Kiran (front row, second from left) at the One Earth, One Human Family climate march to the Vatican, June 2015 [Photo by Mat McDermott/CC BY-NC-ND]
In this inspiring article from Common Threads, Kiran Bali MBE JP, URI Global Council Trustee Chair, describes her personal journey into interfaith work, becoming the youngest ever chairperson of the United Religions Initiative. Interfaith cooperation and impact must lead to the actual improvement of society, she writes, and women have a key role to play.
"When I began junior school at age seven, my experience took a very negative turn. In the playground, I was tormented because of my religion, and children no older than eight bullied me because of religious conflict that was happening many miles away, especially in India. I stopped wanting to go to school. Where had these young children developed this animosity? Most likely from their home environments or because of the dynamics of religious institutions. My local temple was attacked, and my protective bubble of hope was burst. How could we live as a happy family in an atmosphere of fear and hatred?"