Hnn | The Latest From HNN | Details

Hindu Leader Criticizes Pope for Being too Hard on Nontheists

 

Hindu Leader Criticizes Pope for Being too Hard on Nontheists

For HumanistNetworkNews.org
July 15, 2009

Rajan Zed, a well known Hindu leader, criticized the Pope for his rough handling of atheists and humanists in the Pope's recent encyclical "Caritas in Veritate" (Charity in Truth) issued in Rome.

In it, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI wrote: "...ideological rejection of God and an atheism of indifference, oblivious to the Creator and at risk of becoming equally oblivious to human values, constitute some of the chief obstacles to development today. A humanism which excludes God is an inhuman humanism."

More than two years in the making, this 144-page and more than 30,000-word encyclical letter of the Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI to "all people of good will" is considered the highest form of papal teaching.

Zed said that as Catholics and Hindus and others had freedom of their belief systems and were respected for their respective choices, so should atheists. Zed thinks that a religious leader of the Pope's stature should have been more inclusive.

"Although the Pope talked about 'right to religious freedom', 'cooperation of the human family', 'truly universal human community', etc., in this document, he apparently condemned the beliefs of a considerable chunk of world population called atheists, humanists, etc.", said Zed.

Zed, who is based in Reno, Nev., and is president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, asked "Who were we as human beings to judge publicly that other humans' beliefs different than us were 'inhuman'?"

While applauding Pope Benedict for his call for the "common good", which encompasses taking greater social responsibility through reform of financial bodies, sharing the earth's resources equitably and lessening the growing divide between poor and rich, among other things mentioned in "Caritas in Veritete", Zed feels that the leader of the Catholic Church "needs to learn to be more inclusive and large-hearted."

(Editor's Note: On July 12, 2009, Zed made history by becoming the first Hindu chaplain to offer the U.S. Senate's morning prayer. Unfortunately, three Christian extremists disrupted the proceedings by shouting "this is an abomination" among other insults , from the visitors' gallery before being led away by police. Police arrested them and later charged them with disrupting Congress, a misdemeanor. Zed chose not to comment on the incident when requested by HNN.)

 

 

Rajan Zed is the president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, an Interfaith Leader Award recipient, and chairperson of the Indo-American Leadership Confederation. He is also a panelist on an online conversation , "On Religion," jointly produced by Newsweek magazine and washingtonpost.com.

Posted 10:56AM on July 15 2009 by Ruth N. Geller
Categories: Ezine

American Humanist Association

Hey, take a breather and complete this puzzle! You work so hard. You really do d...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

It is unfortunate and far from fair when humanist celebrants are considered unof...

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

Here is a break down of how religious beliefs affect political choices.

3 days ago

American Humanist Association

We are all familiar with this case. It may have been played out a bit in the med...

6 days ago

American Humanist Association

It is likely many of you will prefer this quote over the last. Enjoy!

6 days ago

American Humanist Association

What is your opinion on the United States' level of cooperation with the ICC? T...

6 days ago

American Humanist Association

The Ethical Dilemma: Advice for an Isolated Teenage Atheist Get TheHumanist.co...

6 days ago

American Humanist Association

The AHA is mentioned in this article about Humanist of the Year Barney Frank.

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Check out the latest Humanist Hour Podcast with Muhammad Syed and Hiba Krisht on...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

The NY Daily News reports on our recent congressional briefing

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Carroll County: A Small Maryland Community Gets Big Attention for All the Wrong...

7 days ago

American Humanist Association

Matthew Bulger, the AHA's legislative associate, reports on our first congressio...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

We're happy to welcome a new chapter, Washington DC, Atheists, Humanists and Agn...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

Check out some photos from yesterday's congressional briefing on humanist celebr...

8 days ago

American Humanist Association

Our first congressional briefing was a success! The room was completely packed w...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

Wonder Works Day Camp in Moscow, Idaho has begun! The first day was a huge succe...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

The briefing on military chaplaincy has begun.

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

Today, the American Humanist Association will be hosting our first Congressional...

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!

9 days ago

American Humanist Association

Here is a video from Harvard's Making Caring Common Project. 5 Ways to Raise M...

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

Why the Way We Live is More Important. Get TheHumanist.com by email once a week...

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

Hey, have a laugh! http://hmn.st/1sFRZ33 Get TheHumanist.com by email once a we...

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

No matter how right or how wrong, religion can not establish morality for the ma...

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

I have come across this many times. While this topic may not be important to all...

10 days ago

American Humanist Association

Jesus Cones! A new way to violate church-state separation, in Gwinnett County, G...

12 days ago

American Humanist Association

Well this is rad! AHA Board Member Herb Silverman is featured in this short (10...

13 days ago

American Humanist Association

It may seem silly, maybe even a blatant mockery, but if you really think about i...

13 days ago