To celebrate the 2600th year of Sambodhiprapti (enlightenment of the Buddha), over 800 world Buddhist leaders and scholars are having brain-storming sessions in New Delhi from Nov 27 to 30, under the umbrella theme — ‘Collective Wisdom, United Voice’.
Organised by Ashoka Mission, New Delhi, the congregation will be known as Global Buddhist Congress. Since India has been the birth place of Buddhism, the congregation is being organised at an international level to highlight the contribution of Buddhism to world peace so that social development take place unhampered in a cordial manner.
Representing 32 countries, the delegates aim at finding out newer ways and means to examine the capacity and the resilience of Buddhism to engage itself and be useful in giving a more peaceful and progressive world. Hence, the topics discussed include conflicts and violence, social disparity, environmental degradation, the role of ethics and values, besides seeking novel ways to make Buddhism play a more effective role in evoking the conscience of the people in trouble-hit regions of the planet.
Besides all-faith prayer meetings, a ‘dhamma yatra’ will end with the planting of saplings from the sacred Boddhi trees from sacred locations like Bodh Gaya, Sarnath and Sri Lanka.
A Buddhist cultural heritage festival (Sambodh) will highlight the richness of the cultural “assets” of various nations and how they can be used as cementing bonds between the countries. Focus will also be on how to locate and preserve priceless Buddhist artifacts and monuments all over the country and elsewhere, where they remain neglected.
India, the mother of many cultures, will indeed be richer if we can care for our heritage and love of humanity. That was the message the Buddha had left 2600 years ago. And the message will reverberate over this week as the Buddhist leaders will chant in unison the peace mantra for a more loving and caring planet to live in.