Dallas Morning News,
Dallas Morning News,
Each week we will post a question to a panel of about two dozen clergy, laity and theologians, all of whom are based in Texas or are from Texas. They will chime in with their responses to the question of the week. And you, readers, will be able to respond to their answers through the comment box.
Recently, I attended the beautiful wedding of two friends, one from a Jewish family and one from a Christian family. The ceremony largely followed the Jewish tradition with occasional mention of the bride’s Christian upbringing.
I began to wonder, witnessing this blending of two people into one couple bound under God, what place separate faiths really serve in our society. If we are honest, there is no justifying the fundamental difference in belief between Christians and Jews or the other major faiths. But in cases like these, it is our cultural homogeneity that is more important than the tenets of our faith.
Given that, what does faith really mean in circumstances like these? Is faith or religion simply ceremonial? Or are we overcoming divisions in the name of something greater – that is – love?
Read our panelists’ responses below.
NITYANANDA CHANDRA DAS, minister of ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness), Dallas
Marriage is not just about an attraction of two parties but also those two parties working together to help each other to attain true happiness. True happiness is found by connecting beyond the temporary to the Supreme Being. Because marriage relates to that progressive spiritual advancement in the service of God, considerations of compatibility should not be ignored. The spiritual ideology, or how we see ourselves at our core, and how we individually apply such spiritual ideology must be taken into consideration. Incompatibilities certainly exist within those of the same tradition. Therefore it is important in all cases to see that both parties can properly help each other’s growth towards true spiritual happiness.