22 Sep, Jyoti Tewari : In a remarkable interfaith gesture, acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed formally inaugurated and blessed a Christian church in Nevada’s capital Carson City in USA on Sunday, complete with breaking the coconut, lighting the traditional Hindu deepak (lamp), and reciting mantra from Veda in Sanskrit.
Unity Church of Today (UCT), which recently moved from Minden to Carson City, formally opened today, beginning with breaking of the coconut and including a peace song; prayer for protection; and Buddhist, Jewish, and Muslim prayers.
Starting with "Om", the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work, Rajan Zed, who is president of the Universal Society of Hinduism, read from Rig-Veda, the oldest scripture of the world still in common use, dated from around 1,500 BCE.
Zed also delivered from Brahadaranyakopnisad, Taittiriya Upanisad, and Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord), all ancient Hindu scriptures. He ended the blessing prayer with last mantra of Rig-Veda, "samani va akutih", before concluding with "Om Shanti, Shanti, Shanti", which he then translated as "Peace, Peace, Peace be unto all".
Reverend Larry Edward Schneider, Minister of the Church, said, "We are dedicating the Unity Center as a place for Spiritual Transformation – one where we are working together in lighting the infinite paths to awareness." He wants to open up the Center, of which UCT is a part, to all spiritual traditions.
UCT is affiliated to Unity, headquartered in Unity Village, Missouri, which began in 1886 when Charles Fillmore and his wife Myrtle discovered a way of life based on affirmative prayer. Unity is described as "positive, practical Christianity" which teaches "effective, daily application of the principles of Truth taught and exemplified by Jesus Christ." The Bible is the Unity’s basic textbook and currently there are over 900 unity churches.
Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion followers. Moksha (liberation) is the ultimate goal of Hinduism.
Mission of Unity Church of Today, which had been functioning in Minden (Nevada, USA) since 1990, is to awaken, acknowledge, and nurture the Christ spirit in everyone. It is dedicated to prayer, meditation and living a God centered life, according to Reverend Schneider.