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How a Catholic Kid in Kentucky Became a San Francisco Swami

Looking back now, I guess my life is another testimony to “Ask and ye shall receive.” I was serious about religion as a child and, in one way or another, was always trying to find the truth and do the right thing. It was questioning and seeking that gradually led me step by step to become a sannyasi, or monk, in the tradition of Yoga.

The Light of Hope Renewed

I saw the world. A giant snake, enormously powerful, was coiling itself around the world. The globe seemed too weak to withstand the pressure. I could see the cracks in it. Then I saw a light at the centre of the world. Enter into this light I was told... That Light is the only hope - we, the poor and the rich, the oppressed and oppressors, the theists and atheists, Christians, Muslims, Jews Buddhists, Hindus . We all must get to that light, for it is the light of love and life, the light of hope and future.

Jihad on the D Train

I’d like to say it’s been a quiet week in my hometown, as Garrison Keillor recites at the beginning of his monologues on public radio’s A Prairie Home Companion. But I’m never able to say that, because I’m not from Lake Wobegon. I’m a New Yorker by birth and by attitude, though not by residence over the past nearly three decades.

Confronting ‘the Other’ in Your Own Community

Interfaith dialogue between people of widely divergent faiths is challenging enough, but the tougher assignment is encountering a member of your own religion with whom you profoundly disagree. When that happens, knowing you share a common faith and tradition offers little if your vastly divergent beliefs appear irreconcilable. Perhaps you are secretly wondering if both of you are from the same planet. That is the precise moment – if you have experience as an interfaith activist – that you will want to apply the wisdom you have learned from encounters with people of other religions to deal with the real and present differences of someone from your own faith.

Ibtisam Mahameed, Not Afraid to Speak Out

If I consider myself a peace activist, then all my words and actions must be devoted to peace. For me this is Jihad, and if I die doing this I will be considered a martyr.”

- Ibtisam Mahameed

What Do Women Bring to the Interfaith Table?

This month TIO invited five remarkable women, interfaith leaders representing different faiths, to answer the question, “What do Women Bring to the Interfaith Table?” Three of their responses tell us stories – the other two approach the issue more on its own terms. But the result is a rounded, insightful discussion helping explain why women are more engaged as interfaith leaders than ever before.