Pope calls for “common good” in prestigious “Caritas in Veritate” document

July 10th, 2009 - 6:46 pm ICT by Sampurn Wire  

Hindus have lauded Pope for his call regarding working for the “common good” in his long awaited encyclical “Caritas in Veritate” (Charity in Truth) issued in Rome.

Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, commended His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI’s criticism of growing divide between poor and rich and abuse of modern technologies; and call for greater social responsibility, reform of financial bodies, sharing earth’s resources equitably, vision of undivided city of God; and taking a strong stand on environment, etc.

More than two years in the making, this 144-page and over 30,000-word encyclical letter of the Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI to “all people of good will” is considered the highest form of papal teaching. Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, said that many of the issues/topics raised in the encyclical were similar to what Hindu scriptures and spiritual masters had been saying all along.

Pope wrote in this document: “Once profit becomes the exclusive goal, if it is produced by improper means and without the common good as its ultimate end, it risks destroying wealth and creating poverty… ensure that current economic and social processes evolve towards fully human outcomes.”

Rajan Zed quoted ancient Hindu scripture, Bhagavad-Gita, which says: there are three gates to self-destructive hell—greed, anger, and desire. Abandon these three. A person freed from these three gates of darkness, seeks what is best and attains life’s highest goal.

Encyclical further said, “The poor are not to be considered a “burden’, but a resource, even from the purely economic point of view. It is nevertheless erroneous to hold that the market economy has an inbuilt need for a quota of poverty and underdevelopment in order to function at its best.”

Zed warned that world should wake up to the magnitude of the emergency of poverty. Raising people above the poverty line was an achievable task. It just needed strong political and social will and should be treated as a crisis.

Pope wrote, “The environment is God’s gift to everyone, and in our use of it we have a responsibility towards the poor, towards future generations and towards humanity as a whole… Let us hope that the international community and individual governments will succeed in countering harmful ways of treating the environment.”

Faiths coming out in support of the environment was a remarkable signal, Rajan Zed said and urged all world religious leaders, religions and denominations to openly bless the environmental causes. Ancient Hindu scriptures, especially Atharva-Veda, were highly respectful of mother nature, he added.

Encyclical pointed out, “Sometimes modern man is wrongly convinced that he is the sole author of himself, his life and society… Development must include not just material growth but also spiritual growth, since the human person is a “unity of body and soul’ “.

Rajan Zed stated that another ancient Hindu scripture Taittiriya Upanishad told us to practice right conduct, master the passions, control the senses, and strive for peace always.

Pope Benedict heads the Roman Catholic Church, which is the largest of the Christian denominations. Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksha (liberation) is its ultimate goal. - Sampurn Media

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