In 2008, Karen Armstrong, author of many books on world religions, had a dream. That dream was to bring together all of the world’s leaders and followers by way of the one belief that fits all. That belief is the Golden Rule—Do Unto Others As You Wish Them To Do Unto You. She saw her opportunity to make her dream come true by giving a talk at a conference sponsored by TED, an organization which annually awards three exceptional individuals each $100,000 to help support their “One Wish to Change the World.”
In the heart of her talk Karen said, “I wish that you would help with the creation, launch and propagation of a Charter for Compassion, crafted by a group of leading inspirational thinkers from the three Abrahamic traditions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam and based on the fundamental principles of universal justice and respect.”
Karen’s wish was granted, as she won the TED prize last year, and put the money to work in seeking and receiving input from thousands of people across the world about what should be included in the charter. She then gathered together eighteen very prominent world religious leaders who spent many more weeks writing drafts of the charter.
The good news is that the final draft of the charter is to be unveiled, and that will happen on November 12th. After that day the work will continue. The charter will be spread across the world, through the hands of religious leaders and their houses of worship to all of us.
The time is right for this Charter of Compassion. The world is suffering a serious wound from the misery of conflict and poverty. Through our study and contemplation of the charter and the common bond we have with all to do unto others as we wish them to do unto us we can act together to make the world a place of peace and love for all. More information about Karen Armstrong and the Charter for Compassion can be found at charterforcompassion.org.