Share personal stories with those of other faiths

It is heartening to read the call by Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis) president Mohammad Alami Musa for discussions among the various faiths to go deeper and be more intellectually thorough (Interfaith dialogue 'needs to go beyond sharing of meals'; Oct 24).

For a start, we could read and study the various sacred texts, in the spirit of intellectual inquiry and curiosity to understand one another better.

The sharing of personal beliefs can also contribute to mutual understanding and strengthen friendship.

Everyone has a personal story to tell. Through chit-chats, we talk about our everyday lives.

So what is keeping people from sharing their religious experiences with friends of other faiths?

Perhaps we tacitly assume that doing so means trying to win the other person over and getting him to embrace our belief.

However, when we can honestly share why we believe what we believe without attempting to proselytise, our friends will know us better and the bonds of friendship and mutual respect will be strengthened.

Thomas Lee Hock Seng (Dr)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 26, 2017, with the headline 'Share personal stories with those of other faiths'. Print Edition | Subscribe