Sooke Region Multi-Belief Initiative
“Drawing people together to build a community that is a haven of unity”
Stay tuned for more about our first project: A 2018 Charter For Compassion awareness drive in the Sooke region.
One bright possibility discussed at the District of Sooke’s Healthy Communities Summit in May, 2016 was the creation of a Sooke multi-belief group comprised of local leaders and individuals from all walks of the inner life – religious, spiritual, philosophical and secular humanist included. Not to be confused with traditional multi-faith organizations that exist elsewhere, the group would be as inclusive of all residents in the Sooke region as possible. Effectively, anyone who subscribed to the Golden Rule would be welcome to participate.
The suggestion was that a steering committee operating as a Transition Sooke working group could meet periodically, plot a collaborative course forward, and launch consensus initiatives that would help foster a happier, healthier, more engaged and connected community. Support and encouragement was secured from Mayor Maja Tait’s District of Sooke Health Advisory Committee in November, 2016.
An inaugural SRMBI meeting was held on March 4, 2017 at Harbourside Cohousing. T’Sou-ke Nation elder Shirley Alponse began with a traditional blessing. Mayor Tait spoke about her vision of, and hopes for, a Sooke that is even more of a compassionate community than is already the case. The 22 attendees then got busy at break-out tables to document the range of good works being undertaken by existing organizations in Sooke, identify gaps and issues, and dream big about how the SRMBI might collaborate with, support and/or spark new projects. (Download the meeting report with its full summary of the break-out discussion here: March 2017).
Working group meetings continued throughout 2017. As a starting point, the group collaborated on a statement of SRMBI principles and strategic objectives that has been dubbed the “Quest.” (Download a copy here: Quest – SRMBI)
Effective January, 2018, the working group features (in alphabetical order by first name) Bruce Hegerat, Don Brown, Eric (Hum) Anderson, Jeff Bateman, Koshin Sifu Moonfist, Mark Ziegler, Michael Tacon, Phil Rossner and Troi Leonard. New recruits are most welcome. For further information, please email Transition Sooke.
We recognize our shared humanity and our shared homeland, the planet earth. Together we promote understanding, acceptance and common ethical and moral values to develop the Sooke region community as a haven of peace, wellbeing and caring for each other and our physical environment.
As a Multi-Belief Initiative, we recognize that we have diverse views of reality. While we do not attempt to reconcile these differing views, we explore commonalities and seek to eliminate prejudicial views held by others who differ from us in any way.
Our values are centred on the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you,” guidance found in all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions.
Our common ethical and moral values encompass the universal moral teachings included in all religious, ethical and spiritual traditions such as being truthful, honest, trustworthy, compassionate (as proclaimed in the Charter for Compassion), courteous, tolerant, wise, and just and fair in all our relationships.
We respect the diversity of views held by all those of diverse religious, ethical and spiritual traditions and those of individuals, such as atheists and others, who do not belong to any of those traditions and who strive to live according to the Golden Rule and the ethical values outlined above.
We are inclusive. Every person who shares our purpose and values is genuinely welcomed as a participant in our Initiative.
We are inquisitive, willing to learn about other religious, ethical and moral traditions.
We are open and unbiased in all our interactions including a willingness to discover and remove our own limited and biased views of religious, ethical and spiritual traditions.
Our Strategic Objectives
To access the level of participation by the public in the region in religious, moral and ethical traditions and to determine and monitor indicators regarding the successful fulfilment of our purpose.
To ensure that youth and others in our region are given accurate and respectful information about the diverse religious, ethical and spiritual traditions.
To promote reconciliation with the indigenous people in our region.
To encourage a positive appreciation of cultural and religious diversity.
To promote the adoption of the Charter for Compassion across our region by individuals, organizations and public institutions.