free counters

Monday, June 04, 2007

Milestone Dhammakranti symposium in Delhi

Nagaketu and Kumarajiv have sent us this report from Delhi -

On 25,26 and 27th May TBMSG’s Dhammakranti ‘outreach’ team organized a weekend retreat in Delhi. We decided to bring together Dhamma activists from at least 10 northern states together, Delhi being the capital of India and a convenient place for people from north Indian states to get together. This was a big undertaking for us, as Delhi is over 1000kms from Maharastra. Subhuti, Lokamitra and Suvajra were going to pass through Delhi, so this was a very good opportunity for us to organize such event. Normally at this time of year the temperature in Delhi is more than 40 degree Celsius, so we feared few people would participate and more that our European Order members who were going to lead this event might find that their brains were fried in this heat! Fortunately had some rain and clouds to hide the sun from us and made the heat bearable for all.

We got a remarkable 260 people from 9 states all over the north of India - Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, Delhi, Hariyana, Uttaranchal, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Arunachal Pradesh. They brought with them an atmosphere of inspiration, enthusiasm and energy; they were eager and thirsty to learn the Dhamma.

Our venue was the Ladakh Buddha Vihara, near the ISBT (Inter-State Bus Terminus), a very central place in Delhi. It is run by Ladhaki Buddhists, and having this Vihara for our retreat brought the two major Buddhist communities in India together - the Himalayan Buddhists, who are mainly influenced by Tibetan Buddhism, and the new Buddhists, who mainly became so because of Dr. Ambedkar. This union has a great importance since the whole of India is waking up for Buddhism.

Lokamitra gave a talk on “Understanding the meaning and significance of Dr. Ambedkar’s Dhamma Revolution”. He stressed that many of Ambedkar’s followers, both then and now, do not understand the full significance of his motive behind accepting the Dhamma, and narrated situations in the life of Dr. Ambedkar where it was clear how the Dhamma had been the top-most priority in his work. After his talk people asked questions like whether Dhamma could be an answer to topical situations like caste-based atrocities, exploitations and poverty.

Subhuti gave talks and workshops on how to get the message out to the 300 million Indian people who are thirsty for the Dhamma. He got people to do role-plays on explaining the purpose of Dr. Ambedkar’s conversion to Buddhism and what is meant by the transformation of caste society into a society based on liberty, equality and fraternity. He answered varied questions on different aspects of life and its relation to Dhamma, and urged all the participants to reach out to at least ten people each every month to explain the significance of what they practiced.

Kumarjeev and Yashosagar from Maharastra, plus six Order members from UP (Uttar Pradesh) were present to support Subhuti and Lokamitra.

Dhammachari Maitriveer-Nagarjun and his team of Mitras from JN University, Delhi organized this program. They did this excellent job in the midst of their examinations.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home