Conference Overview

The World Congress of Religions 2012 will explore the relevance of religion and spirituality in addressing the critical issues of poverty, the empowerment of women, human rights and peacemaking. The gathering will bring together engaged leaders, scholars, activists and members from diverse religious and spiritual communities, engaged actors in the local and global interreligious movements, as well as influential policy makers and civil society actors from guiding institutions such as government, business, education, science, media, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). The event is inspired and informed by the message of the religious and social visionary, Swami Vivekananda, on the 150 th anniversary of his birth.

Vision: To use the interfaith search for shared values and mutual respect in promoting a more peaceful and sustainable world. To use religious beliefs and spiritual practices as the basis for efforts to eliminate poverty and support women’s rights. To hold up Swami Vivekananda’s embodiment of this work to the world and share the ongoing relevance of his message to the global interreligious movement.

Opportunity: The World Congress of Religions 2012 offers an opportunity to pave the path for a new era of cooperative action among the world’s religious and spiritual communities as well as civil and political societies. Such a gathering is urgently needed in the present context of the global interreligious movement and the striving for world peace.