Hindu statesman Rajan Zed honored by LDS Church

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Zed sits in the center of a group of some of the attendees at the reception in Zed’s honor. (Photo courtesy Rajan Zed)

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints recently honored Rajan Zed, Hindu statesman and president of Universal Society of Hinduism, with a plaque of honor.

The plaque was presented to Zed by Elder George M. Keele, member of the Quorum of the Seventy at an interfaith clergy reception held in the statesman’s honor.

Zed is Senior Fellow and Religious Advisor to the New York headquartered Foundation for Religious Diplomacy, Spiritual Advisor to National Association of Interchurch & Interfaith Families.

Zed was very gracious to the Church for its support.

“It was a real honor for me as it was a remarkable interfaith gesture on the part of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to honor a Hindu statesman. I appreciate their efforts at inclusivity,” he said.

Written on Zed’s plaque was a quote by Albert Einstein signifying the way Zed lives his life. It reads,”There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”

Zed is a prominent figure in interfaith efforts. He earned the World Interfaith Leader Award by the National Association of Interchurch and Interfaith Families (NAIIF). According to the NAIIF, the award must go to someone who has “demonstrated extraordinary world leadership, courage and capacity for inspiring in others the urge of interfaith dialogue and cordial relations between faith communities.”

Zed appreciates the award, but said he would be more content if he was able to create more harmony among different communities of the world.

“Religion is a complex component of human life, and dialogue helps us to see interconnections and interdependencies between religions and even similarities in doctrines,” Zed said.

“Religions should at least work together on common religious concerns like peace-making and peace-keeping, social and economic development, freedom and human rights.”

Zed has also been honored for spreading peace through the power of prayer and has read opening prayers in the United States Senate, various state senates and houses of representatives, counties and city councils all over the U.S. Oct. 25 has been named “Rajan Zed Day” by six cities in the U.S.: Hartford, Conn.; Taylorsville; Madera, Calif.; Sparks, Nev.; Chowchilla, Calif.; and Sanger, Calif.

“I feel that more inclusive understanding of religion is needed and we should learn to live together with mutual loyalty despite our seriously different faiths,” Zed said. “All religions are different ways to relate to the Divine, different responses to the reality and were a positive sign of God’s generosity.”

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