The meeting took place in Taiwan. The nuns hope that “our witness to a way of life [. . .] can be meaningful and joyful through detachment from consumerism, materialism, and individualism [and] encourage others to walk on the path of goodness.”
Vatican City (AsiaNews) – The origin, evolution and current situation of monastic religious life for women in Buddhism and in Christianity was one of the topics discussed at the first international Buddhist-Christian dialogue for Nuns.
The meeting, held in Taiwan on 14-18 October at the Fo Guang Shan monastery in Kaohsiung (pictured), was centred on Contemplative Action and Active Contemplation: Buddhist and Christian Nuns in Dialogue.
It was sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue in collaboration with the Fo Guang Shan Buddhist monastery, the Association of Major Superiors of Religious Women in Taiwan and the Dialogue Interreligieux Monastique/Monastic Interreligious Dialogue.
A statement by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue said that about 70 nuns from Taiwan, Korea, Japan, India, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Cambodia, the Philippines, Brazil, Italy and Germany attended the conference. A representation of the World Council of Churches was also present.
In a statement issued at the end of the conference, the participants defined this First International Dialogue for the Buddhist and Christian nuns as a point of reference for promoting mutual understanding and friendship among women religious and for building bridges that link their different spiritual paths.
The Sisters noted that, whilst remaining steadfast in their own deepest convictions, they can learn from each other how to be spiritually, culturally and socially enriched, thus becoming humble and credible for their brothers and sisters.
“[W]e believe,” the statement said, “that our witness to a way of life that can be meaningful and joyful through detachment from consumerism, materialism, and individualism may encourage others to walk on the path of goodness.”
Likewise, “we stress the importance of being contemplatives in the midst of action” working “together to show tenderness to those who are in need.”
The Sisters reiterated their belief that interreligious dialogue is a path that men and women must undertake together. For this reason, they encourage more and more women religious, to contribute with their "feminine genius" to new and creative ways of dialogue between religions and urge their communities to be more open so that this contribution can be received.