By October 4, 2016 Read More →

International Day of Non-violence Observance

Sunday, October 2, 2016 at ECOSOC Chamber, UNHQ, NY

Mrs. Sudha Raghunathan and team of musicians

Mrs. Sudha Raghunathan and team of musicians

Madhavi and I entered the room with the sounds of the melodious voice of Mrs. Sudha Raghunathan greeting us as she chanted words of Mahatma Gandhi: may peace prevail in this world, let spiritual strength grow, non-violence is the greatest gift, non-violence is the greatest friend. click here    Mrs. Raghunathan is India’s leading Carnatic music singer. She also has a passion for serving society by engaging in various causes.

Many inspiring stories and memories of the Mahatma were shared by the various dignitaries who spoke.  The Ambassador of India, H.E. Mr. Syed Akbaruddin, said that Gandhi would have been pleased with India’s participation on the Paris agreement on climate change and environmental concerns, while the President of the General Assembly, H.E. Mr. Peter Thomson, remarks were “our world desperately needs the lesson of non-violence that the Mahatma taught us. We find solace in his message of “respecting our difference, loving our environment.”

Feelings of deep appreciation for the great life of Gandhi surfaced as we listened to Professor Barry Gan, Director of Center of Non-violence, St. Bonaventure University, emphasized many of Gandhi’s practices, especially that of truth, in his life: God is Truth and truth is God. God comprises truth and that comprises all reality.

There were a few lines of the songs Mrs. Raghunathan sang which struck the audience and were particularly mentioned by the Deputy Secretary General, H.E. Mr. Jan Eliasson: “Non-violence is the highest virtue; may the sunlight of compassion and unity spread to convert the heads of the cruel, let us destroy ignorance and fear.”

Along with paying tribute to the Mahatma, the Indian music legendary, Dr. M.S. Subbulakshmi, was also honored by the United Nations Postal Administration by issuing a stamp marking 50 years since she performed on United Nations Day in 1966. An album of stamps was also presented to the officials at the head table.

Dignitaries displaying their stamp

Dignitaries displaying their stamp

For me, a world where non-violence reigns becomes a reality when we can be at peace with ourselves, when we learn to value each other as God’s creation, and teach ourselves to respect our planet.

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