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Oscar-nominated director John D. Goodell (Always a New Beginning) made a documentary that chronicled the preparation for the Yoga Ecumenical Service, talks by the celebrants and the actual interfaith service. On the 30th anniversary of the film’s original release, the digitally re-mastered film was released on DVD. Sri Swami Satchidananda, a pioneer in the interfaith movement, often gathered with clergy of various faiths to discuss how to promote unity in diversity. During one of these interfaith retreats and symposiums, he had another innovation: the Yoga Ecumenical Service (now known as the Light of Truth Universal Service), in which representatives of different faiths gathered together around a circular altar and performed a worship service to a central light. This light—in the form of a lit candle—was adopted as a universal symbol of the Divine. Performing the service were celebrants representing their respective faiths, and offering worship to the central light from their own faiths’ traditions.

Celebrants included:

  • Sri Swami Satchidananda,
  • Rabbi Joseph Gelberman,
  • Brother David Steindl-Rast, OSB,
  • Reverend Gesshin (Roshi Prabhasa Dharma),
  • Father Robert Beh,
  • Murshida Taj Inayat

 

“Because we are one in Spirit, it doesn’t mean that you should renounce your own path or approach. That is not unity; that is conversion. Real unity means accepting all the various approaches, and that is what interfaith understanding is all about. Only by having a universal and spiritual vision can we bring positive change into the world.” —Sri Swami Satchidananda

Find the DVD here or at Amazon