The Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions has been a significant event in Kazakhstan for over 20 years. Held once every three years, this event brings together leaders of religions from around the world to engage in dialogue and mutual understanding. Shinsaku Mitsui, the head of the International Section, Jinja Honchō, Japan, recently shared his thoughts on the importance of this event and the role of Shinto in the global dialogue of religions.
Mitsui highlighted the unique characteristics of Shinto, the traditional religion of Japan. Unlike other global religions, Shinto is deeply rooted in daily life and culture, with a focus on harmony and gratitude towards nature. Despite being the predominant religion in Japan, it is not widely known outside the country due to its distinctiveness and lack of evangelism.
Mitsui expressed his gratitude for the opportunity for Shinto to participate in the Congress, acknowledging the dynamic leadership of the President of Kazakhstan and the welcoming nature of the people of the nation. He emphasized the importance of the recent development concept adopted at the 21st meeting of the Congress Secretariat, which paves the way for continued dialogue and collaboration between religions and civilizations in the coming decade.
Looking ahead, Mitsui expressed confidence that the practical actions launched under this concept would advance the search for truth and nurture tolerance. He believed that the desire for peace held by representatives of religions across the world would contribute to global peace and understanding.
In conclusion, Mitsui extended his heartfelt gratitude to President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, the Head of the Secretariat of the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions, and the people of Kazakhstan for their warm hospitality. He expressed hope for the continued success of this globally important endeavor and looked forward to the upcoming meeting of the Congress Secretariat in Astana.
The participation of Shinto in the Congress of Leaders of World and Traditional Religions signifies a significant step towards greater interfaith dialogue and understanding on a global scale.