Sarvodaya expects over a million people from all parts of the country and overseas to attend a Universal Peace Meditation (Vishva Sama Samadhi), to be held between 3 pm and 6 pm tomorrow (Monday) at Anuradhapura`s historic Mahameuna Uyana.
Sarvodaya said that others are expected to join the meditation via live TV coverage on the ITN network and Sarvodaya`s own web cast (www.sarvodaya.org).
`The Universal Peace Meditation is a bid to bring peace to Sri Lanka and the rest of the world,` Sarvodaya said in a news release. `We have been holding a series of spiritually based events across the country as part of an integrated approach towards peace and development.`
The organisation said that the most recent peace initiative began with a Peace Meditation for 10,000 in Trincomalee. Tomorrow`s event, timed to coincide with Mahatma Gandhi Day, will culminate in what Sarvodaya called the `Universal Peace Meditation.`
The event is being organised on the principle that a critical mass of spiritual consciousness can be created when over a million people join together in a spiritual process and that this can in turn influence people around the world towards inner peace, Sarvodaya said.
All participants, the majority from poor rural villages throughout Sri Lanka, have funded their own transport costs to get to Anuradhapura. They represent all ethnic and religious backgrounds, the news release said.
The event will be attended by Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Christian (Catholic, Anglican, Methodist) and Bahai leaders with the meditation being led by Sarvodaya`s Founder President, Dr. A.T. Ariyaratne.
`Together we can create a critical mass of spiritual consciousness for peace and loving kindness,` Ariyaratne said.
Messages of support have been received from around the world. The Dalai Lama comments: `Dr. Ariyaratne has worked tirelessly to promote peace `85 in addition to trying to address people`s physical requirements, he has continually acknowledged the need to fulfil spiritual needs with such projects as the Anuradhapura peace meditation in 2002 which attracted 650,000 people.`
President Mahinda Rajapakse, added his support: `Sarvodaya has conducted many programs of meditation and invocation of blessings for peace, understanding and peaceful co-existence in Sri Lanka and the world at large. It is my belief that the Universal Peace Meditation .. will see the welcome participation of Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim, Burgher and all other communities. It is my fervent wish that the message of peace would spread throughout the world.`
Mr. Ranil Wickremesinghe, Leader of the Opposition, offered his blessings for the participants and described the event as `the best way to bring peace.` He added: `In the current world, where humans are in conflict, all need peace in their minds.`.
All participants have been asked to dress in white as the event is a spiritual gathering.