FAITH ROLE: Prince Charles receives the award
Prince Charles visited the UK’s largest Jain temple to mark the silver jubilee of the Institute of Jainology last week.
The prince was honoured with an Ahimsa Anniversary award which recognises those who show compassion and tolerance towards humanity, animals and the environment.
Prince Charles was presented the award for his work in encouraging inter-faith dialogue at the Jain Derasar temple in Hertfordshire. A plaque was unveiled by the prince to commemorate his visit last Thursday (22).
“We all have a duty to work for greater harmony between the religions of the world, especially when, as now, tolerance is being so severely tested,” Prince Charles said. “At a particularly heightened time of anxiety for us all, when horrific violence is being inflicted on so many people around the world, supposedly in the name of a particular faith by people who have monstrously distorted the original message of its founder, it is of greater importance to recognise your ancient yet constant message of reverence, of what is sacred, and to appeal for greater tolerance and understanding of people of different faiths or of none at all.
The royal visit was arranged by the Institute of Jainology, which aims to promote compassion and non-violence towards all living beings.
Addressing Prince Charles, Dr Mehool Sanghrajka from the Institute, said: “For so many years you have emphasised the critical importance of taking better care of this interconnected and increasingly fragile world. You have been a resolute champion of the natural environment and have been unwavering in your appeal for action for a sustainable future, while yourself advancing a range of practical initiatives to further this goal.
“The Ahimsa Award also recognises the contribution you have made to encourage interfaith dialogue, a greater mutual understanding among adherents of the world’s faiths and acceptance of religious diversity. Your words and actions have resonated with us and we wish to acknowledge and encourage them.”