The Human Cohesion Project — 3 May 2022
The third Ashra of Ramadan brought in an unending flurry of activities and challenges, and opportunities for inner and outer peacebuilding. While I could not manage to continue writing daily reflections, I did manage to spend a few minutes every day in meditation, whether it was while walking to a workspace, or organising, or even while cleaning. The practice of forgiveness during the second Ashra deepened during these days when I initially grappled with the guilt of not writing every day, as I had committed to myself.
Yet, the experience of Ramadan only deepened. This year also offered an opportunity to fast from the form of commitment I had begun to associate with The Human Cohesion Project. Much as I continue to hold the intention of this project of creating public discourse around the cohesive potential of religion, it can happen in many ways. This year, it began in writing, and ended in deep, meaningful, challenging conversations against the backdrop of religion, conflict and war. Conversations opened up around trauma healing work in Kashmir, north east of India and Ukraine, as Ramadan came to a close.
I close these reflections by reconnecting with the intention of The Human Cohesion Project, for us all to reconnect with religion as a uniting force, as a common ground, and as a shared experience of humanity. The Ukraine war continues even as we celebrate Eid. In India, Eid also coincides this year, with Akshaya Tritiya — a Hindu, Jain and a tribal spring festival that celebrates the potential for prosperity. Even as there is conflict, there is hope. Even as there are rifts, there are collaborations. Life holds it all, without discrimination.
Eid Mubarak. May we access the capacity to co-hold realities, as Ramadan held many, many confluences this year.
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