Tal Howard offers a carefully researched history, from the Mughal Empire to Nostra aetate and beyond.
parliament of religions
The long line snaked past the shoe cubbies and head-covering bins. It terminated well outside the exhibit hall as hundreds of people ate—or waited to eat—lunch. Arriving a bit earlier or a bit later would have made no difference. Everyone wanted to be part of this spiritual practice, and we were no exception. Friendly young adults, dressed in white, moved down the line and cheerfully explained the history of the event. Soon enough, we were seated in a row on the floor. Another row of people sat facing us. One by one, servers brought trays: rice, curried vegetables, water, salad, a cup, utensils, mango lassi. Second and third helpings ensured that no one left hungry. The Sikh community offered langar, which means “common kitchen,” to all 9,000-plus registrants at last week's Parliament of the World’s Religions.