SESSION EXCERPTS - SESSION I
2ND OCT 2018
Need to promote “value based universal education system” based on the appropriate understanding of the role of science and spirituality / religion, to minimize chaos, confusion, terrorism and violence prevailing in the world.
This was the theme chosen for the First Session of the World Parliament 2018, held on the auspicious occasion of the Birth Anniversary of the Father of the Indian nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi. The event started right after the Worlds Biggest Dome, The Sant Dynaneshwara World Peace Prayer Hall and Library, was inaugurated by the Vice President of India, Sri Venkaiah Naidu and the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis.
Prof Carolyn Jenkins
The Session Began with Prof Carolyn Jenkins detailing her experiences while working for an NGO in Vai, Maharashtra. She quoted the example of a young boy who was born with 3 holes in his heart. Instead of the villagers understanding and accepting the problem to then try and work towards a solution, the first thing they did is try and understand who is to blame for the boy’s predicament. Most blamed the mother and her past life’s bad experiences, including the mother herself. Then some blamed the father and his errant ways. But no one tried to look for a workable solution for the child. In this way, the Professor challenged long-held superstitions and the fact that the education imparted to the villagers had very little to say about the role of science and logical thinking. She strives still to undo that blind faith amongst people.
Hiroo Saionji was pressed for time, but nonetheless did a good job of his speech. He thanked Prof Dr Vishwanath D Karad on the monumental success of the World Peace Parliament before outlining the work his organization has been undergoing. He stresses that the time is now for us to collectively analyze all paths towards religions and spirituality and create a unified pathway based on that study. Moreover, he spoke of the ‘Peace Balls’ that his organization has created which have the world Peace etched on them in almost all the languages of the world. He has created and gifted close to 200 of them globally so far. He plans to gift on to Prof Dr Vishwanath D Karad as well.
Kalyan Vishwanathan was a refreshing change as he wished to play the Devil’s Advocate about the initiative so as to ensure its success by tackling the issue before it even begins. He stressed on the fault lines between spirituality and religion while supporting that spirituality and science still had a better connection with each other. This, in turn, raised the question of how religion could be compatible with the unified views being espoused, noting that it can be done albeit with difficulty.
Dr P B Sharma
Dr P B Sharma wished to modify the existing structure of education itself. He stressed on how the country was involved in merely creating students who learn by rote instead of learning by actually delving into the study material. He further stressed that the way forward was through dialogue and through the creation of an education system that gave as much weight to spiritual development as it did to temporal development.
Scott R Herriot
Scott R Herriot is a scientist who stressed on the spiritual aspects of healing the world itself. He stresses ion the application of transcendental medication to achieve lasting world peace. He states that studies have shown that amongst a control group not everyone must practice said medication for it to benefit the entire group. The percentage required is so dismally small, but it affects everyone in the group. In that way, he states that for India to benefit only 4000 individuals are required to practice the meditation, and for the whole world to benefit only 7000 must meditate. Thus he states each and every university on the planet has the power to actually change the world and bring about serious world peace.
Dr C K Bharadwaj
Dr C K Bharadwaj took the most practical route out of this by stressing on the importance of science and technology and how commerce is actually binding us all together. He goes on to state that as beautiful as any philosophy can be, its practical implementation is what ought to decide its worth and value. He stated that there were many truths hidden in the world religions as well as the sciences and only through their synthesis can the word fight the evils of terrorism and chaos, which is nothing but the power of ignorance over the power of wisdom.