The increasing trend of greater religiosity globally and in Singapore is accompanied by an increased tendency to assert and project one's religion into the public sphere.
This made it even more important than before for Singapore to remain a country where the beliefs and views of others are respected and where a focus on commonalities as opposed to differences, makes us stronger, said Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean at the Community Engagement Programme Dialogue on Saturday.
DPM Teo addressed some 600 community leaders at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel on Saturday, where they discussed over a series of townhall sessions, the Singapore identity and means of fostering stronger social cohesion.
Facilitators shared that finding a common 'language' which Singaporeans can identify with, and re-cultivating the kampong spirit of the old days were among common themes of discussion brought up.
Wrapping up the dialogue, Acting Minister Lawrence Wong highlighted the importance of moving beyond tolerance to acceptance and having shared values with one another to cultivate the Singapore spirit.
This is the eighth year the programme is being held.