Multiculturalism – Contribution to world peace
Statement on behalf of HINDUISM
Om Tat Sat Sri Narayana Tu
Purushottama Guru Tu
Siddha Buddha Tu Skanda Vinayaka
Savita Pavaka Tu
Brahma Mazda Tu Yahve Shakti Tu
Ishu Pita Prabhu Tu
Rudra Vishnu Tu Rama Krishna Tu
Rahima Tao Tu
Vasudeva Go-Vishvarupa Tu
Chidananda Hari Tu
Advitiya Tu Akala Nirbhaya
Atmalinga Shiva Tu
My humble pranams at the Lotus feet of the Divine Lord Almighty. Respected President, Honourable Ambassadors, my fellow brothers & sisters in the council, delegates, it gives me immense pleasure to be here in the United Nations Inter religious council.
I requested my better half to start my speech with this invocation for two reasons. First of all, she sings better than me …. Secondly this describes the essence of what I am going to talk about. GOD………..God is ONE… All religions lead to the same God. He is called by various names & forms… He is Vishnu… He is Narayana.. Rama.. Krishna, Yahve.. Shakthi… He is Jesus… He is Allah… Rahim.. He is Tao…. Whatever names & forms with which we call him….it all reaches to the same GOD.… Like all the rivers, with various names & forms, merge into the ocean… All religions lead to and merge into one God. Well, geographically even the oceans are called with different names but if you see from a fundamental layman point of view, the Ocean is ONE and all rivers merge into the ocean.
“The ideal function of religion is to provide a sound, fundamental world-view which correctly orientates the individual to the cosmos and thus can serve as the basis for an intelligent guide to living.”
The fundamental basis of all religions is universal. It is like the fundamental composition of the rivers is water…leading to the ocean. Like how the physical World is composed of the 5 basic elements Earth, Fire, Water, Air & Ether, the human character is formed with the 5 human values of Truth, Righteousness, Peace, Love & Non Violence. I’m sure that my brothers & sisters here would agree, all religions & cultures emphasize on these 5 values. It is the inherent nature of every human being like its life breath, without which we don’t exist.
With the foundation strong with the 5 values, why do we suffer today? Why do we have all this hatred amongst people? Why do we have so many religious conflicts amongst us?
Education must remove hatred between the pilgrims on the various roads to God. There is only one God, one Goal, one Law, one Truth, one Religion and one Reason.
Due to the impact of modern age and the advancement of modern education, man’s intellect is getting perverted. There is no point in acquiring education bereft of character. Worldly education, which comprises mere bookish knowledge, can never help you to lead a divine life. No doubt, worldly education is essential, but along with worldly education, one should have spiritual education too. “Adhyatma Vidya Vidyanam” (spiritual education is the true education), ”Nadinam Sagaro Gatih” (rivers ultimately merge in the ocean). Worldly education is like rivers and rivulets, while spiritual education is like a mighty ocean. So, of all the forms of education, spiritual education is the highest and the noblest.
The basis of what I have learnt & experienced is from my religion.
There are two world religions which have formed the cultural and ethical basis of the world as we know it. Both have an unbroken history going back thousands of years. Judaism with a 5000 year old tradition is the mother of the western civilisation through its offshoot Christianity. Hinduism is the older of the two with a literature going back to the beginning of recorded history. Hindu civilisation originated in the Gangetic and Indus valleys and from there spread out over the entire region of southeast Asia. Its offshoot — Buddhism, shaped and molded the civilizations of Japan, China, Tibet and the rest of Asia. The Ancient pre-biblical kingdom of the Mittani in Asia minor was ruled by Hindu Kings with Sanskrit names! The Sumerians and the Hittites were both Indo-European people said to have originating in the Gangetic Basin. Hindu philosophy/theology influenced the ancient Greeks since the time Alexander the Great conquered parts of north India. A remarkable similarity has also been demonstrated between the religion and mythology of the ancient Scandinavian people and that of the people of India. The ancient civilizations such as the Roman, the Greek, the Egyptian, the Sumerian, and the Babylonian have all passed away. Even the Jewish culture has undergone many radical changes since its inception 5000 years ago – yet the Hindu civilisation continues as a vibrant and living vector, and has remained virtually unchanged for over 6000 years. Today, Hindu communities are to be found in almost every country on earth. Hinduism is embibed with this Spiritual education…the VEDIC education.
The Himalayas or Himachala forms the northern boundary of India. They are like the beautiful Alps of Switzerland. ‘Hima’ means ice. It is white in colour and melts easily. Whiteness symbolizes purity. ‘achala’ means that which is steady. Your heart, which is called as ‘Hridaya’ should also be like Himachala, pure and steady. It should melt with compassion. Compassion for the fellow human beings. Hri + daya. Daya means compassion. The core of the heart must be steady & strong filled with human values. God resides in your heart only when it is pure, steady and full of compassion. But to-day human heart has lost purity, compassion and its values due to limitless desires. Life is a long journey and your desires are the luggage. “Less luggage more comfort make travel a pleasure.” The journey of life will become enjoyable only when you reduce the luggage of desires. The lesser the desires, the happier you will be. The worldly education today is all about making Money
It can buy a House………….But not a Home
It can buy a Bed ……………But not Sleep
It can buy a Clock ………….But not Time
It can buy you a Book………But not Knowledge
It can buy you a Position…………..But not Respect
It can buy you Medicine…………..But not Health
It can buy you Blood ………………But not Life
Money isn't everything. It often causes pain and suffering
Money may provide all the comforts and conveniences, but can it confer mental peace? No. Only spirituality can grant peace of mind. Living the human values is way to attain peace with oneself… and when one is at peace with himself, he transmits that peace to his surrounding….and inturn to the world.
Let me conclude by saying, when truth is put into practice, it becomes righteousness. Truth is expressed in words, while righteousness is expressed in action. On this basis, the Vedas taught, Sathyam Vada, Dharmam Chara (speak Truth, practice righteousness). Hence righteousness is based on truth. Without truth, there is no righteousness. That is why the Vedas say, Sathyaannasthi Paro Dharmaha (there is no dharma higher than adherence to Truth). Without the foundation of truth, the mansion of righteousness cannot be built. Peace is the reflection of right conduct. Man prays for peace and performs various spiritual practices aspiring for peace. But so long as he has desires, he can never attain peace. Mind is the basis for desires. So, one has to control the mind in order to attain peace. When the mind is controlled, it remains silent. Such a state of thoughtlessness is true peace. The fourth human value is love. Love is the manifestation of Truth. It is pure, steady, effulgent, attributeless, formless, ancient, eternal, immortal and nectarous. These are the nine qualities of Love. Love hates none, unites all. Ekatma Darshanam Prema (experience of non-dualism is love). Ahimsa or Non Violence shines as the undercurrent of the remaining four values, namely, truth, righteousness, love and peace. That which leads to violence cannot be truth, righteousness, love or peace. These five values are verily the five life-breaths of man.
I call upon the Inter Religious council & the United Nations to inculcate and blend Education with Human Values in all levels. Education with Human Values is the way to attain global peace.
My spiritual master summarizes all what I said in 4 simple words
Love ALL Serve ALL
Karthik Ragavand and Venkat Ramanan (Switzerland)