About the UBA

The University Buddhist Association of UCLA is an organization of students, faculty, and community members who come together to learn about and practice Buddhism. We're a non-sectarian Buddhist group that welcomes all Buddhists and non-Buddhist of all faiths and traditions.

If you're interested in learning more about the UCLA Buddhist community, please come to our meetings.

When: Every Tuesday, 5:30 - 7:00pm
Where: University Catholic Center
633 Gayley Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90024

If you have any questions, please contact us at uba.ucla.online@gmail.com.
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Sunday, December 14, 2008

Proselytizing during Interfaith events

Here's an interesting article about proselytizing (I still have trouble pronouncing that word) during interfaith events. I've always been fascinated by interfaith events, because it's wonderful how groups of people unified under a faith can come together with other groups of people unified under a different faith and discuss similar topics through their own perspectives.

While diversity, in any issue (race, religion, cultures, etc.), is often hailed as a positive state in society, I think many people forget that diversity is only good when paired with tolerance. With religion, interfaith events allow all religious groups a moment of diversity as well as time to practice tolerance.

Here's a little bit of what Matthew Weiner and Matthew Dunbar from "Navigating the Waters of Interfaith Activity" have to say about interfaith events, specifically Buddhism:

"Proselytization is not always blatant or conscious, and rules that ban it or even shared assumptions that frown on it do not prevent its more subtle forms. Buddhists are fond of saying that meditation is not a religious practice. But it leads to Nirvana - Buddhist salvation. Is having a Buddhist lead a meditation at an interfaith retreat proselytizing? What did the Buddha mean when he called for disciples to 'spread the teachings'? Buddhism, often seen as a more historically tolerant faith, is nevertheless one of the world's most successful missionizing faiths. But it also illustrates how ambiguous the category of 'evangelizing' can be."

Read full article.

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