NAIDOC Week is 3 – 10 July 2022. This year’s theme is Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up!

The theme calls for all Australians to continue advocating for systematic change. “We all must continue to Get Up! Stand Up! Show Up! for systemic change and keep rallying around our mob, our Elders, our communities.

Whether it’s seeking proper environmental, cultural and heritage protections, Constitutional change, a comprehensive process of truth-telling, working towards treaties, or calling out racism—we must do it together.” NAIDOC Committee.

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Experience the Bahaʼi faith

Mona Vale house of worshipThe Contemplative Studies Centre at the University of Melbourne conducts online webinars themed “Tradition Deep Dives“. The next webinar is an exploration of the Baha’i Faith, whose central teaching is oneness: oneness of humanity, the oneness of religion, and the oneness of God. This session will explore what meditation means to Baha’is, and how prayer and meditation are the foundation of Baha’i efforts to establish an inclusive and vibrant community life. This event invites participation from all persons, regardless of religious beliefs.
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How effective is mindfulness for treating mental ill-health?

Mindfulness and mental health

Mindfulness forms part of the trillion-dollar wellness industry, representing 1.5–6% of yearly spending around the world (estimated to be more than US$200 million) on wellness products and services.

Smartphone apps, in particular, have skyrocketed in popularity offering incredible promise for mental health with wide reach, and scalability at low cost. Mental ill-health was on the rise before the pandemic but reached new heights during it. Correspondingly, COVID created previously unseen demand for mindfulness apps and online courses.

It’s no surprise people have turned to mindfulness in the wake of the past few stressful years, and their considerable promotion. And while there may be some benefit, it cannot treat mental ill-health on its own, and should not be relied upon to do so.

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Buddhist and Catholic, priests and theologians practice ‘double belonging’

Statues of Buddha and Jesus.
Statues of Buddha and Jesus. Photos via Unsplash/Creative Commons

(RNS) — In a dimly lit Roman Catholic church in Manhattan, a dozen or so congregants sit as the Rev. Michael Holleran leads them in contemplative prayer. There is some singing, and some prayers said aloud throughout the hour-and-a-half-long worship service. Every so often Holleran rings a bell three times, meant to awaken worshippers from “sleep and into a consciousness of God’s presence.”

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Preventing and Responding to Family Violence: A Faith Leader’s Practice Guide and Toolkit

Preventing and Responding to Family Violence: A Faith Leader's Practice Guide and ToolkitSisters4Sisters Support Services – with support from the Women’s Information and Referral Exchange and other family violence specialist organisations, including consultation with members from Victoria’s diverse faith communities, have produced Preventing and Responding to Family Violence: A Faith Leader’s Practice Guide and Toolkit, a broad and wide-ranging guide for Faith Leaders in responding to family violence. Specialist input was given by Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety (ANROWS), affiliate researchers, and strategies from specialist CALD and LGBTQIA+ family violence organisations. The guide is available for download.
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Australian Muslims ‘devastated’ by Saudi Arabia’s new Hajj pilgrimage lottery

Kabaa at night

Saudi Arabia’s new visa lottery system has thrown Australian Muslims’s Hajj plans into chaos.

The rules changed overnight, forcing many to cancel their flights and hotel bookings.

Saudi Arabia says the lottery system is designed to crack down on Hajj-related scams.

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Pope to Buddhists: Let’s work together to cultivate compassion and hospitality

Pope Francis receives a Delegation of Buddhists Pope Francis receives a delegation of Buddhists from Thailand and reiterates Pope St. Paul VI’s feelings of profound regard for the spiritual, moral and socio-cultural treasures of the Buddhist tradition.
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Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

Faith Communities Concerned about Nuclear WeaponsShepparton Interfaith Network has endorsed the Joint Interfaith Statement Welcoming the First Meeting of the States Parties to the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. A Nuclear-Free Earth is a condition of peace on Earth and a future for ourselves and our children – and their children – to live in, with Peace on Earth.

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A Jewish View: On Humility and Transcendence

MenorahFrom time to time it is good to listen to faith leaders from other religions explain the meaning of their sacred documents. We read as one Rabbi unpack a selection from the Hebrew scriptures, Tanakh, after the letters of the first three books (what Westerners call Pentateuch). Here, Rabbi Shoshana Cohen explains a perspective on humility and transcendence leading to the totally utter otherness of the Divine.
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William Cooper’s dreams of Indigenous representation in Parliament inch closer

Senator Patrick DodsonThe man leading the charge on enshrining a First Nations voice in the constitution says he’s often inspired by the work of Indigenous rights pioneer William Cooper says the Special envoy for the implementation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart, Senator Patrick Dodson.
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International Essay Contest for Young People

International Essay Contest for Young People
The Goi Peace Foundation, Under the auspices of The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan conduct an essay competition for young people up to the age of 25. This annual essay contest is organized in an effort to harness the energy, creativity and initiative of the world’s youth in promoting a culture of peace and sustainable development. It also aims to inspire society to learn from the young minds and to think about how each of us can make a difference in the world. Submissions close June 15th.

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The Power of Silence

The Power of SilenceThere is noise, and the healthiest noise in the world is children playing. There is a healthy silence, the silence in which we access depths within ourselves, the silence wherein we restore and heal the body; and there is the ignoble silence, the silence of shame and oppression. The Buddha spoke in praise of silence; he also spoke about the times we need to speak out about the silence of oppression and shame.

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Community Cultural Conversations

Community Cultural ConversationsAs part of the National Reconciliation Week, Greater Shepparton City Council is excited to be offering the opportunity to members of the community to participate in a workshop to better understand Aboriginal culture and its significant rich history in Greater Shepparton.
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Great Stupa of Universal Compassion near Bendigo to host interfaith library of religious texts

Great Stupa of Universal Compassion, BendigoA library devoted to texts and artefacts from different faiths will be built at the Great Stupa of Universal Compassion, near Bendigo in Central Victoria, which organisers hope will attract scholars and people from around the world. The library is a project 42 years in the making when the Great Stupa’s chair, Ian Green, envisioned a library to become a leader in libraries on theology and philosophy.
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National Reconciliation Week 2022

National Reconciliation Week 2022National Reconciliation Week is from 27 May to 3 June. The National Reconciliation Week 2022 theme, “Be Brave. Make Change.” is a challenge to all Australians— individuals, families, communities, organisations and government—to Be Brave and tackle the unfinished business of reconciliation so we can Make Change for the benefit of all Australians. National Reconciliation Week is of significance to all Australians: it is the precursor to all Australians living in harmony, cooperation and understanding.
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Cultural Bus Tour – Places of Worship

Multicultural Bus Tour
Shepparton Ethnic Council welcomes the community to participate in a day of discovery of Shepparton’s unique Multicultural communities on Monday 20th of June 2022. There will be visits to places of cultural interest in Mooroopna and Shepparton. Seats are limited – interested people should register early.

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Being spiritual in Australia: Complexity, contemplation and controversy

University of Melbourne logoThe Contemplative Studies Centre of Melbourne University presents Dr. Anna Halafoff – a well known researcher of spirituality, religion and interfaith matters – who will address Being spiritual in Australia: Complexity, contemplation and controversy. This session is offered online, on June 8, 12:00pm – 1:00pm. This webinar is free.

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Meditation Session in Shepparton

buddhist meditatioBuddha taught the many benefits of meditation more than 2500 years ago — and modern medical science confirms this – and reinforces those benefits in study after study. The good news here — aside from reinforcing Buddha’s teachings — is the benefits are broad spectrum. All sorts of people — who live incredibly diverse lives and have very different problems — can find the same benefits and wonders in meditation. The Buddhist Association of the Goulburn Valley invites you to participate in a Free Meditation session on Saturday 28th of May 2022 from 3.00 pm to 3.45 pm.
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