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Mission Activities

Message of Peace through Buddhism spread through Vesak celebrations at UNESCO

he Embassy of Sri Lanka and the Permanent Delegation of Sri Lanka to UNESCO organized a one day Symposium on the theme ‘Buddhism and the Promotion of Sustainable Peace’ at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris on 10 May 2017 to commemorate Vesak festival which is also a UN international  day of observance.  

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(H.E. Tilak Ranaviraja addressing the opening ceremony)

The programme  commenced with Buddhist, Hindu, Islam and Christian religious observances to encourage interfaith harmony followed by presentations on the main theme by eminent Buddhist scholars Ven. Professor  Mahinda Deegalle, Professor of Religions, Philosophies and Ethics, Bath Spa University, UK and Dr. Elizabeth Harris, Senior Honorary Research Fellow at The Cadbury Institute for the Public Understanding of Religion at Birmingham University, UK. In addition, Master Jun Hong Lu, President of Australia Oriental Radio and Television and Chairman of 2OR Buddhist Charity Association who is a philanthropist actively involved in promoting Buddhism throughout the world also took part in the event as a speaker.

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(Buddhist, Hindu, Islam and Christian religious blessings)

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(Deputy Director General of UNESCO, Chairperson of Executive Board and other permanent delegates)

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(Chief guest and sponsor of the Vesak ceremony, Master Jun Hong Lu addressing the meeting)

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(Panel discussion on the theme ‘Buddhism and the Promotion of Sustainable Peace’)

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(Over 800 people were attended)

The afternoon session of the symposium comprised of a meditation session, a panel discussion on the sub-topic ‘Promotion of peace and cohabitation among different faiths through education, culture and science: lessons from Buddhism'. The event which created significant interest among participants in the Buddhist doctrine, ended with a colourful cultural evening featuring Bhakthi gee as well as traditional Sri Lankan dance items. 

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(Cultural events)

Ambassador Tilak Ranaviraja speaking at the event, deliberated on the leading role played by Sri Lanka, as the Centre for Thervada Buddhism in  advancing non-violence and peace through the teachings of Buddhism, which also falls in line with the main objective of UNESCO in creating peace in the minds of men and women. He further announced that the topic of the symposium was chosen in harmony with the international celebration of the 14th  United Nations Day of Vesak in Sri Lanka from 12 to 14 May 2017.

The Vesak Day Celebrations were attended by over 800 people including members of the Buddhist clergy, other religious dignitaries, Permanent Delegates accredited to UNESCO, staff of the UNESCO Secretariat and by Members of the Sri Lankan as well as other communities.

 

The Embassy of Sri Lanka

France

19 May 2017


 

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