July 2009

Contents

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| editorial |
The Obama Era or is it something finer?
Jim Kenney

| creative encounters |
Interfaith Engagement qur'anic perception
Mohammad Habib

Holistic Science and Human Life K.L.
Seshagiri Rao

Spiritual Poetry and Interfaith Understanding
Rasoul Sorkhabi

Drinking from Many Wells excerpts from an interfaith journey
Michael Jagessar

Guru Granth Sahib its meaning in the modern pluralistic world
Dharam Singh

| reflections |
Reflections on the Environment
Marcus Braybrooke and Jackie Tabick

| voices of youth |
faiths act together multi-faith action against malaria
Hannah Wallace

| practically speaking |
Interpreting Faith to Visitors reflections on a pioneering
faith guiding course Ian Jones and Ruth Tetlow

| focus on the interreligious movement |
Notes from the World Congress of Faiths
Marcus Braybrooke

Building and Deepening a Movement
Kamran Mofid

| in review |
Review Article: Damaging Adventures
David H. Clark

| poetry |
Aedh wishes for the Cloths of Heaven
William Butler Yeats

| prayers and meditation |
Prayer for Peace
Mahatma Gandhi

To pray you open your whole self
Joy Harjo

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Mahatma Gandhi's Room

In Ahmadebad, India, one of Gandhi's ashrams is preserved as a museum. This issue's cover photo, by Cetta Kenney, is of the tiny cell where Gandhi-ji wrote, meditated, spun thread, and occasionally slept. Visiting the ashram complex is a wonderfully informative experience, but entering this simple chamber can be almost transformative.

Perhaps most evocative for me was the sight of the spinning wheel. For the Mahatma, the idea of "self-reliance" had become one of the principle symbols of the fight for independence from the British Raj. Two symbols of that movement became preeminent. One was salt; the other was the spinning wheel.

When Gandhi led the famous "salt march" in 1930, it was not only an act of civil disobedience but a clarion call to authenticity. The "poorest in the land" could subsist without the British-taxed salt.

But the spinning-wheel movement was even more evocative. The boycott of European-made cloth called Indians back to their ancestral roots. The inexpensive cloth that Gandhi and his followers made (khadi) was a celebration of self-sufficiency.

His wheel (charakha) became the symbol for an age.

Gandhi's Room, Ahmedabad, India; photo Cetta Kenney


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