The Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha today addressed the valedictory session of Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts (IGNCA) and Deshkal Society on 3rd Edition of Bodh Gaya Global Dialogue on “Sustainable Development, Heritage and Enlightenment” through virtual mode here at Raj Bhavan.
Addressing the delegates on the occasion, the Lt Governor observed that the timeless teachings of Buddha have strong relevance even in contemporary times and are very important for thinkers and intellectuals because of the dynamic changes we are seeing in every field in today’s era.
Indians are known for their greeting to their guest in Sanskrit “अतिथि देवो भवः” Atithi devo bhava meaning “Guest is like God”. India’s culture and heritage are a rich amalgam of the past and the present.
Bodh Gaya is a cradle of Buddhism culture, Buddha teachings, and heritage and a unique location for seekers from India and abroad .
“The wisdom of Buddha, in essence, is a seed with the potential to grow and awaken the whole of humanity. Let us imbibe the wisdom of Mahatma Buddha and conserve and preserve our tangible and intangible heritage and society woven around it”, said the Lt Governor.
I am delighted to be a part of the deliberation on the important topic “Sustainable Development, Heritage and Enlightenment”. I believe that sustainable development caters both material developments of Individual, region, place as well as nourishment of the soul. In this context, our focus has to be on conservation, restoration of tangible heritage as well as dissemination of intangible legacy to kindle the center of humanity, the Lt Governor maintained.
While appreciating the efforts of the organizers for conducting Global dialogue, the Lt Governor observed that Bodh Gaya Global Dialogue is in fact a rare opportunity where people from different walks of life come together, in communion, with the spirit of oneness to promote Bodh Gaya as a World Heritage site, besides strengthening the relationship between Buddhist Pilgrimage in India and the South East Asian Nations.
The Republic of India is the seventh largest country in the world by area and, with over a billion people, is second only to China in population, although its much higher birth-rate makes it likely to reach pole position in less than ten years.
It is an extremely diverse country, with vast differences in geography, climate, culture, language and ethnicity across its expanse, and prides itself on being the largest democracy on Earth and a hub of trade in Southeast Asia. India provides a vast canvass for touring whether it may be cultural, adventure, religious, history, beach, wildlife and other forms.
The Lt Governor said that the religious places depict our beliefs, moral values, and cultural heritage and it is the responsibility of one and all to contribute their bit to preserve and redevelop them.
Highlighting the significance of Bodh Gaya, the Lt Governor said that Bodh Gaya is a source of spirituality, meditation, human welfare, and compassion.
“Bodh Gaya teaches the whole world the values of thought, analysis, faith, respect, and is a symbol of kindness and compassion for all living beings. Bodh Gaya is a cradle of Buddhism culture, Buddha teachings, and heritage and a unique location for seekers from India and abroad”, he observed.
The Lt Governor further lauded the efforts of IGNCA and Deshkal Society on various fronts for the multi-dimensional development of Bodh Gaya to strengthen relationships and build a strong and sustainable network between Bodh Gaya and South-East Asian Nations.
I am witnessing a great miracle happening for mankind through this initiative. The worshippers from Thailand, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, South Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam, Japan, and eminent monks and scholars have been coming regularly to Bodh Gaya and are taking a lead in reviving and developing Southeast Asia’s rich ancient legacy, said the Lt Governor.
The Lt Governor also suggested linking Bodh Gaya, Rajgir, Sarnath with eminent places in East Asia for sustainable development of our collective heritage.
The Lt Governor said as per UNESCO ‘Bodh Gaya is of Supreme Value to the World’. The efforts put in by various stakeholders during recent years have led to the promotion of Tourism along with Ecological Sustainability, Livelihood Generation, besides massive transformation has been seen in the Civil Society group regarding Urban Heritage Planning.
Recalling the teachings of Lord Buddha, the Lt Governor said the total awareness comes with an empty mind and that is the state of Buddhahood. We all have that potential of Buddhahood and all we need is a little bit more awareness in our life, in our work, he added.
“I see this occasion as an opportunity to be more spontaneous, be ourselves and live and work compassionately for others too in order to eradicate inequality in society.”
“The message of Mahatma Buddha is to awaken people and show them how to live as pure consciousness and this is what IGNCA and Deshkal Society is doing through Bodh Gaya Dialogues. Be aware, be more loving, and be more compassionate, observed the Lt Governor.”