Message for Diwali: 'overcome hatred with love'

 Cardinal Paul Poupard, president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue, has written a message to Hindus for the Feast of Diwali, the Festival of Lights, which falls this year on October 21. The title of the message is: "Overcoming hatred with love." With Diwali, the cardinal writes in his English-language message, Hindus celebrate "the victory of truth over untruth, light over darkness, good over evil and life over death. ... The reality of love is closely connected to truth, light, goodness and life. I would like to reflect on this theme of love, through which believers of different religions are invited to overcome the evil of hatred and distrust in contemporary society. "The recent terrorist bomb attacks in Mumbai, India, are yet another example of these phenomena which so often end in brutal violence," adds the cardinal before recalling Benedict XVI's first Encyclical "Deus caritas est" and explaining how the Pope "wrote this letter convinced that his message is both timely and significant 'in a world where the name of God is sometimes associated with vengeance or even a duty of hatred and violence.' "The importance and demands of love can be best learned from God Who, the Christian faith professes, is Himself Love. ... God loves us all without exception and His love is unconditional. Our human response to God's love must be spelt out in concrete stewardship of God's creatures, especially to human beings. It is urgent and necessary that believers of different religions manifest jointly to the world that hatred can be overcome by love. "In today's complex societies, is it not possible for us to join hands and collaborate in seeking justice for all, working together on common projects, for the development of the downtrodden, the marginalized, the destitute, the ... weak? Moral and spiritual poverty, which are caused by breeding hatred in one's heart, can be eradicated by believers who are filled with love and compassion. Love creates trust, which in turn, promotes genuine relationships among believers of different religions." "Benedict XVI ends his letter, 'Deus caritas est,' with the following words: 'Love is the light - and in the end, the only light - that can always illuminate a world grown dim and give us the courage needed to keep living and working.' The Pope's words obviously refer to Jesus Christ Who is the Light of the world. However, these words can also draw your attention since for you the meaning of your feast, Diwali, is symbolized by light. May our love finally overcome the darkness of hatred in the world! Source: VIS

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