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Hindu-Jewish Accord – leadership summit, Feb 2008

The 5th February 2008 saw the culmination of an historic two-day Hindu-Jewish leadership summit in New Delhi, facilitated by the World Council of Religious Leaders. It was historic due to the signing of a declaration — the ‘Protocol of Co-operation’ — that reaffirmed the longstanding co-operation that exists between the two faiths and, more importantly, promised the ending of literally hundreds of years of misunderstanding between them.

The declaration was signed on behalf of Hinduism by the representative of the Hindu Dharma Acharya Sabha, Swami Dayananda Saraswati, and on behalf of Judaism by the Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi Yona Metzger. Broadly, the declaration, in affirming the shared values of these two major religions, condemned all forms of religious violence.

Two particular achievements of the conference were the formal addressing of the relatively recent and painful enmity over the Hindu swastika symbol, misappropriated by the Nazis, and the clearing up of the much older source of discord, the misconception that Hindus worship not one God but a multiplicity.

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