|Sunday 7th May 2006|
|Address From His Majesty King Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev at Pipara Muth, Birgunj On The Occasion Of The Silver Jubilee Anniversary Celebrations Of The World Hindu Federation (April 7, 2006)|
|Ladies and gentlemen,
It is indeed a pleasure for us to be amongst this august gathering of revered sages, religious leaders, excellencies, scholars and participants who are here to take part in this ceremony being held on the occasion of the silver jubilee anniversary of the World Hindu Federation.
The Kingdom of Nepal, the fountainhead of Hinduism, has, since time immemorial, provided ascetics and mystics with the spiritual ground for meditation. Siddhartha Gautam, the founder of Buddhism, is a son of this land. Buddhism later spread far and wide, including India, China and Japan, and Lord Buddha came to be revered as the proponent of peace, a fact we should take pride in. Janaki is also a daughter of this soil. Having never faced any kind of discord in the name of religion, Nepal can be taken as a paradigm of perfect harmony between religious tolerance and peaceful co-existence. While holding all religions in high esteem, we firmly believe in the good virtue of creating a peaceful environment. This is also an outstanding attribute of Hinduism.
Nepal is not only home to Vedic sages and Buddhist philosophers. According to scriptures, Guru Nanak, the founder of Sikhism, meditated on the banks of the holy Bishnumati River and Emperor Bharat, son of Rishabhdev, considered the first Tirthankar of the Jain sect, meditated on the banks of the Kali Gandaki River in Nepal. So it can be surmised that the strong religious pillars of all four sects, namely Vedic, Jain, Buddhist and Sikh, were bonded in Nepal, thereby paving the way for the spontaneous development of the Omkar Parivar.
The holy land of Nepal, which has the distinction of having sacred places like the Pashupat, Baraha, Ruru and Mukti Regions and is also referred to in the Puranas, is a common site of pilgrimage for all. The people of Nepal and India enjoy similar culture and tradition, with the age-old affinity and affection fostered by shared religious beliefs complementing one another. Common perspectives have been developed in a number of issues. The deep sentimental relations between the Hindus of the world has augmented and inspired the advancement of fraternity amongst Hindus all over in the 21st century.
Hinduism, which dates back to the beginning of civilisation itself, embraces the high ideals of tolerance and “Vasudaiva kutumbakam” or universal fraternity. In these ideals lies the strength in the relations amongst various faiths in this Hindu Kingdom.
Based on humanistic ideals, the Hindu culture, which espouses the precept “Sarve bhawantu sukhina sarve santu niramaya” or “Let every human being be happy and free of disease; let every individual’s well-being be ensured”, is dedicated to the good and peace of all. These ideals must be incorporated into our way of life, as inscribed in the great religious epic The Bhagawat Gita.
There are many instances where, for peace, many sages have sacrificed their lives. To establish permanent peace in the true sense is the need of the day. Let us all pledge to dedicate some of our time towards this noble cause. The holy Vedas also lay special emphasis on peace and humanism.
The Hindu religion touches every aspect of our lives. To this day, it continues to occupy the pride of place it had acquired during ancient times. We are confident that, like in the past thousands of years, its future is eternally secure because its ideals and philosophy have not been distorted. We believe that religion leads an individual on the path of righteousness. Hinduism endorses reincarnation and purity of the soul. Our religion teaches us that no matter how difficult a task may be, we must pursue to execute it with a sense of dedication and dutifulness since our good deeds in this world ensures our well-being in the next. At the same time, it also inspires us to view life in a positive manner.
It is a matter of satisfaction that the Third World Hindu Convention and, under the auspices of the Convention, the Shanti Sammelan (Peace Conference) and Santa Sammelan (Sages’ Conference) are being held on the auspicious occasion of the silver jubilee anniversary of the World Hindu Federation. We are confident that the recommendations adopted by these conferences will provide important guidelines for the benefit of the Hindu world as well as humankind as a whole.
Finally, while conveying best wishes for the success of the silver jubilee anniversary, we wish to thank the organisers and participants on behalf of the Queen and ourselves.
May Lord Pashupatinath bless us all!