Messages on the importance of inclusiveness and tolerance in this increasingly connected-yet-divisive world were amplified in scores of discussions and art performances at the 13th Ubud Writers and Readers Festival (UWRF) here.
Early in the morning on Friday, a prominent Balinese spiritualist, Prabhu Darmayasa, who had just launched his interpretation of the Indian classic Bhagavad Gita (Song of God), pointed out that one way to tackle religious-related problems, including radicalism, hate and violence, is by realizing the essence of religion.
“The essence is spiritual liberation and happiness. By treating religion as a box that confines us, we would not achieve that essence,” he said.
Prabhu, whose disciples hail from places as far away as Russia and other parts of Europe, spoke on a panel called Mystical Bali alongside scholar and lontar expert Sugi Lanus and D...