RELIGION
09/23/2014 09:01 am ET Updated Oct 03, 2014

Dalai Lama Discusses Jihad, Islamic State At Meeting Of India's Religious Leaders

On Saturday the Dalai Lama shared a lesson on 'jihad' aimed at the Islamic State and other groups who commit violence in the name of religion.

Speaking at a meeting of Indian leaders from nine different religious traditions, the Dalai Lama addressed the Islamic State, saying: "Killing in the name of faith is unacceptable."

The Tibetan spiritual leader focused on the concept of "jihad," commonly thought to be a holy war, but which he said has a far more spiritual dimension within the context of Islam.

“Jihad combats inner destructive emotions," the Dalai Lama said. "Everybody carries jihad in their hearts, including me.”

Just one day after the Dalai Lama delivered his remarks, the Islamic State reportedly released a speech over social media entitled "Indeed Your Lord Is Ever Watchful," which encouraged Muslims around the world to kill "disbelievers."

In his comments on Saturday the Dalai Lama warned against such aggression and encouraged religious leaders to speak out.

"If we remain indifferent to what is happening around us, it is wrong," the Nobel Peace Prize winner said.

With his lesson on jihad, the Dalai Lama joins other Muslim and non-Muslim leaders who have descried the Islamic State's representation of the faith. Pope Francis has also spoken out against the group, most recently during a trip to the Muslim-majority Albania.

Addressing an audience in Tirana, the pope applauded the mutual respect among faiths which he said was strong in Albania, and called such cooperation a "precious gift" in today's world.

"This is especially the case in these times where an authentic religious spirit is being perverted by extremist groups and where religious differences are being distorted and instrumentalized."

Pope Francis also challenged the Islamic State's claims of acting in the name of Allah by saying:

"Let no one consider themselves to be the ‘armor’ of God while planning and carrying out acts of violence and oppression!"

In a recent blog called The Key To Defeating ISIS Is Islam, Salam Al Marayati, President of the Muslim Public Affairs Council wrote about the difference between ISIS and Islam including: "ISIS is based on hate and vengeance. Islam is forgiving and persevering. "

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