PM addresses Global Buddhist Summit
The Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi addressed the inaugural session of the Global Buddhist Summit at Hotel Ashok in New Delhi on April 20, 2023. The Prime Minister walked through the photo exhibition and offered flowers to the Buddha statue. He also offered monk robes (Chivar Dana) to nineteen eminent monks.
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister welcomed everyone from different corners of the world to the inaugural session of the Global Buddhist Summit. He underlined that ‘Atithi Devo Bhava’ i.e. guests are equivalent to God, is a tradition of this land of Buddha and the presence of so many personalities who have lived through Buddha’s ideals makes us feel the experience of Buddha being present himself around us. “Buddha is beyond the individual, it is a perception”, the Prime Minister said.
The Prime Minister said that Buddha is a sensation that transcends the individual, he is a thought that transcends form and Buddha is a consciousness beyond manifestation. “This Buddha consciousness is eternal”, he said. He said the presence of so many people from diverse areas represents the expansion of Buddha that binds humanity in a single thread. He also underlined the strength of the collective will and resolution of crores of followers of Lord Buddha globally to make for the welfare of the world. Noting the occasion, the Prime Minister expressed confidence that the inaugural Global Buddhist Summit will create an effective platform for the efforts of all nations and thanked the Ministry of Culture and International Buddhist Confederation for this momentous event.
Noting that the Global Buddhist Summit is taking place during India’s 75th year of Independence when the nation is celebrating Azaadi Ka Amrit Kaal, the Prime Minister underlined that India has a major goal for its future and new resolutions for the global good. He emphasized that the inspiration behind India achieving the recent global landmarks in various sectors is Lord Buddha himself.
Remembering the Buddhist path of theory, practice and realization, the Prime Minister elaborated on India’s adoption of all three points in its journey in the last 9 years. Shri Modi said that India has worked with dedication for the propagation of Lord Buddha’s teaching with a sense of dedication. He talked about the development of Buddhist circuits in India and Nepal, the renovation of Sarnath and Kushinagar, Kushinagar International Airport, and India International Center of Buddhist Heritage and Culture at Lumbini in collaboration with the IBC.
The Prime Minister credited the teachings of Lord Buddha for an inherent empathy in India for the issues of humanity. He mentioned peace missions and India’s whole-hearted efforts in rescue work for disasters like the earthquake in Turkiye. “This emotion of 140 crore Indians is being seen, understood and accepted by the world”, he said. Platforms like IBC, he continued, are giving the opportunity to like-minded and like-hearted countries to spread Buddha Dhamma and peace.
The Prime Minister said, “The journey from the problem to arriving at the solution is the actual journey of Buddha.” Throwing light on Lord Buddha’s journey, the Prime Minister reiterated that he left his life of castles and kingdoms because he realized the pain in the lives of others. He emphasized the only way to achieve the goal of a prosperous world is when one gives away the idea of self and narrow-mindedness and realizes the totality of the Buddha Mantra of adopting the idea of the world. He stressed that a better and stable world can be achieved only if we consider the nations dealing with a scarcity of resources. “It is the need of the hour that the priority of every person and nation should be the interest of the world along with the interest of the country”, the Prime Minister remarked.
The Prime Minister said that the current time is the most challenging time of this century as there is war, economic instability, terrorism and religious fanaticism, and the challenge of climate change with species disappearing and glaciers melting. He said amidst all this there are people who believe in Buddha and the welfare of all creatures.