The Fifth World Religions' Conference was held on 22nd, 23rd & 24th Nov.,1974 at Ramlila Grounds, Delhi. The Conference was inaugurated by Shri B.D.Jatti, Vice - President of India. Smt. Indira Gandhi, P.M. of India who was theChief Guest of the Conference on the second day, viz., 23rd November, 1974 addressed the Conference. Shri F.A Ahmed, President of India, the Chief Guest of the Conference on 24th Nov., 1974, delivered the Valedictory Address. This Conference, successful like the previous ones, was more important for the delegates and Subjects Committees who reviewed all the resolutions, plans and programmes passed and put forth at the earlier conferences with particular reference to the establishment of an International University of Spirituality, comprising the Research Institute of Comparative Religions, Yogic studies and Vegetarian diet. A very special feature of the Conference was working on the resolution on "Educate for Peace".
My Intimate Brothers and Sisters
I am extremely grateful to all of you that you from all the far and wide corners of the world have assembled here facing all possible difficulties and inconveniences to add to the spiritual significance of the Fifth World Religions Conference. And what are the crucial problems and questions of our time? What are the needs of mankind? They are : that a real assurance and provision is made for the security for the entire mankind to ensure that none holds a monopoly of the basic resources needed to make mankind happy and prosperous. And that all the resources of the world should be adequately and justly distributed to the rich and the poor alike and that peace and co-existence should become the fundamental guiding principles of life on the national, international, racial and religious levels. After years of meditation and thought, I came to the conclusion that it is most imperative to raise the divided, frightened and tension-ridden human race to a higher spiritual plane as one family of man. It is only the spiritual force which can transcend the constraints of race, religion, language, regionalism and geographical frontiers and provide salvation and peace to the entire mankind.
On you, my brother and sister delegates, devoloves a great responsibility of taking some very significant spiritual and constructive decisions for the setting up of some important international spiritual agencies. These proposed agencies include :
For the World Fellowship of Religions it is indeed a matter of great pride and privilege that its Fifth World Religions' Conference on the 22nd, p a 23rd and 24th of November; 1974 is being held in the year of the celebration of, the 2500th Nirvana Anniversary of Lord Mahavira.I have full faith & trust that mankind can attain its glorious destiny by following the path of non-violence and many-faceted approach to truth (anekanta) taught by Lord Mahavira. Come, Let us offer our homage to the universal God of humanism 'Lord Mahavira' and strive for the welfare of all beings, both here and hereafter,marching together with the spirit of infinite love and faith by our thoughts, words and deeds. Thank you.
I am grateful to Muni Sushil Kumarji and members of the World Fellowship of Religions for their kind invitation to me to be present here. "It is really a matter of pleasure for me to meet so many eminent religious leaders who have come from foreign lands and from different parts of the country. It is time that religious men following different faiths unite and face common problems confronting mankind. The conflict of ideas today is not between one religion and another but between religious faith and gross materialism.
It is but appropriate that the Fifth Conference of World Fellowship of Religions should have been convened here at a time when we are celebrating the 2500th Nirvan Mahotsav of Lord Mahavira.Lord Mahavira preached the gospel of non-violence and toleration throughout the length and breadth of the country. His message is as relevant today as it was 2500 years ago. I am glad to know that one of the primary objectives of your Conference is to launch an all religious movement in the World to combat violence in all forms and at all levels and to focus attention of the international community on the futility of using force and violence as a means to resolve national or international disputes or conflicts. Any effort towards promoting or strengthening the forces of peace and international understanding is indeed commendable.
The rapid progress of science has transformed our lives in a revolutionary manner. Distances have been obliterated. In this rapidly shrinking world, in which every country has become the, neighbour of every other country, peace among the nations is of great significance. We have been living through a crucial period of human history. Science and technology have placed in the hands of mankind the possibility for its growth as well as its destruction. It is religion that will give us the wisdom to use the power that we have wisely. Man has accumulated diabolical weapons of mass destruction that can annihilate life on this planet. It is the duty of religious leaders like you to save humanity and usher in an era of peace and plenty for all. I wish your endeavours all success.
Declaration by the Delegates of all faiths gathered at the Fifth World Religions' Conference (India), 19 74.We declare that the way to welfare and progress of Mankind is not through armament and conflict.
We declare that, Religions are meant to promote Good-will and understanding amongst men & must act as the unifying factors in human society. Religion should be taught, preached and propagated only with this objective and to this end only.
We declare that neglect of man's inner development & the education & culture of the higher spiritual part of man has been the major cause of the woeful failure of modern technological way of life in which the invention of things, improvement of processes and streamlining of methods were given more attention than man's ethical and moral evolution. All countries must adopt a global programme of education for ethical and spiritual awakening in Man.
We declare that the reason for this error is the incomplete view of Man as being a merely physical - cum - psychological creature. The awakening, activating and the manifesting of this inner perfection is a vital necessity for Humanity today. We declare that the vital principles of truthfulness, non-violence, Purity of character & conduct, selflessness & spirit of service, simplicity & benevolence must be adopted as a world - wide universal code of conduct for the human species. These should be inculcated by all through global co-operation.
We declare that this is the road to a safe & secure future for Mankind and that all nations & govts. must urgently realise that the moral welfare of their citizens& subjects is as much their responsibility as any other aspects of their welfare. Beloved world brethern! we call upon all of you to help implement the above mentioned principles.