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The Parliament of World Religions Salt Lake City

Sometimes one receives the gift of a vision. Recently, over 10,000 people gathered in Salt Lake City to celebrate the unity of our diverse faith expressions. Many of those people had a vision: how the world is meant to be, unified by our values, motivated by our ideals, acting upon our aspirations. (

There were many voices of inspiration singing together for the time we were together in Salt Lake City. Three voices that resonated so clearly were the voices of women, the voices of the indigenous people, and the voices of hospitality.

A Women's Assembly gathered thousands of women to celebrate the feminine, and the emerging voice of the feminine within our culture.

This voice is a powerful one of hope and wisdom.

Indigenous traditions from all parts of the planet gathered to speak their truth and the growing appreciation of a deep quality of wisdom and guidance within these traditions. The grandmothers of many of these traditions provided presentations. The audience was told clearly: when you are ready to listen, we have the answers to the problems that you now face.

The hospitality of the event was palpable. The Sikhs served Langar, a meal of hospitality, every day to all the participants. Their kind spirits and compassion touched every heart. Everywhere one turned, there was the balm of smiles of compassion. Every tradition on the planet was represented and expressed hospitality.

Karen Armstrong, the author of the Charter for Compassion, shared that compassion is not a luxury, but a necessity. And, that compassion is not a word, but an ideal in action. Communities all around the planet are signing up to become compassionate communities. I welcome you to taste the vision at the next Parliament.

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