October 2nd Worldwide Message of Peace
The Gandhi Legacy Tour family supports the efforts of Peace and of the Gandhi Development Trust in Durban, South Africa. This week Gandhi Development Trust leadership reached out to friends to help spread the message of peace to youth. October 2, 1869 is Mahatma Gandhi’s birth date. Jai Jai Jayanthi Bapuji!
Satish Dhupelia, great grandson of Mahatma Gandhi and also serves the work of Gandhi Development Trust writes the following note:
The Gandhi Development Trust wishes to reach out to as many students as possible to spread the word of peace and non violence. As part of this process we have prepared a message that we would like schools to embrace and read out on the 02 October. Please assist by spreading this message to as many schools and youth as possible.
The 2nd of October is the International Day of Non Violence and more than ever we need to spread the word of peace, goodwill and non violence to as many people as possible. Schools too have their share of violence and with this in mind the Gandhi Development Trust prepared this important message of peace.
We hope we can inspire your assistance in making our world a better and more peaceful place to live in.
Let us be the change we wish to see.
Yours sincerely, Satish Dhupelia
Message below written by Ela Gandhi, granddaughter of Mahatma Gandhi
Message for Schools For 2nd October from Ela Gandhi
Mahatma Gandhi’s birth anniversary was memorialised throughout the world when in 2007 the United Nations declared the 2nd October to be observed as a Day of nonviolence each year.
The resolution supported by 140 of the 192 member states of UN was moved by India and seconded by South Africa. The resolution 61/271 of 15 June 2007 called on member states UN bodies, regional and non governmental organisations and individuals to observe the day through education and awareness campaigns by disseminating the message of nonviolence.
It promotes, “the universal relevance of the principle of nonviolence and the desire to secure a culture of peace, tolerance, understanding and nonviolence.”
Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma who was then the Minister of International Affairs, in her speech at the First International Day of Non-Violence at UN said, “It is with great honour and humility that South Africa is participating in this solemn occasion marking the First International Day of Non-violence. We are proud to claim Mahatma Gandhi as our own because it is in our country where he developed and fashioned Satyagraha as a tool of liberation. A cruel and despicable act of racism in 1893–in which a young barrister was thrown off a train from Pietermaritzburg, simply because of the colour of his skin, produced the Mahatma Gandhi that the entire world today claim as theirs. Indeed as history teaches us heroes are not born but are products of their own conditions.”
So Mahatma Gandhi who came to South Africa a lawyer representing a client, Dada Abdulla, embarked on a journey that transformed his life. People who worked with him were men such as R.K. Khan who died a wealthy man. But Mahatma Gandhi left no money and a handful of possessions. He gave his properties in South Africa for the benefit of the community. But he left us and the world with the powerful weapon of Satyagraha or nonviolent action.
Dr Zuma said, “His philosophy of non-violence characterized many of the struggles waged by our people against the system of apartheid.”
She went on to say, “He was aptly described by Nelson Mandela as a “sacred warrior whose philosophy contributed in no small measure to bringing about the peaceful transformation in South Africa and in healing the destructive human divisions that has been spawned by the abhorrent practice of apartheid” Faced with current global challenges we must necessarily pause and ask the question, what is the relevance of Gandhi’s philosophy in addressing current challenges facing humanity today?”
Dr Zuma said, “We… agree with Louis Skweyiya, …. that Gandhi is a “universal man, timeless in impact, as relevant today, as he was yesterday, as he will be tomorrow”. Accordingly, Mahatma Gandhi, would have encouraged all of us to resolve all conflicts through peaceful and non-violent means as has been proven that violence simply leads to counter violence.”
She further stated “Gandhi to whom we owe our presence here today, would have warned against the resort to attacks on unarmed and defenseless civilian populations including women and children to advance whatever political objectives.”
So the message today is that we must respect each other, we must protest against injustices but never attack people, and the protests must always be peaceful. Those who advocate violence need to see that violence only leads to destruction and misery. It causes more harm than good.
It results in destruction of life and property. Such destruction leads to more misery, poverty and deprivation.
Every person who dies, is maimed or injured as a result of the violence leaves a family that is traumatised and angry and wants retribution.
Public money is used to replace destroyed property e.g. when we burn down trains, or buildings or buses. That money could have been better used to provide more facilities in schools, in Universities and in building more homes.
The poor suffer when property is destroyed. The world suffers when we destroy resources and cause pollution through smoke from burning tyres burning trains and cars and in using ammunition.
So today as we observe the day of nonviolence let us think of how we can change our world so that we can see brothers and sisters, fathers and mothers, parents and children, educators and learners workers and employers all respecting each other and all making an effort to understand each other and above all love, cherish and protect each other.
Let us think and do!
Let us be the change we wish to see in the world!
Lynnea Bylund is managing director of Gandhi Legacy Tours, Director of Gandhi Worldwide Education Institute, founder of Catalyst House and has nearly three decades of experience in administration, marketing and business development. She was a nationally recognized spokeswoman for the emerging alternative video and information delivery industries. She has a degree in holistic health-nutrition from the legendary and controversial health educator and activist Dr. Kurt Donsbach, she is the founder of two not-for-profit small business-based wireless trade associations and has lobbied on Capitol Hill and at the FCC where she has spoken out strongly against the cable TV monopoly, illegal spectrum warehousing and ill-conceived congressional schemes to auction our nation’s precious airwaves to the highest bidder.
Ms. Bylund is a founder and former CEO of a Washington DC telecommunications consulting and management company with holdings in several operating and developmental wireless communications systems and companies. In 1995 Lynnea became the first female in the world to be awarded a Broadband PCS operating permit – she was one of only 17 winners, along with Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon in the biggest cash auction in world history, raising a whopping $8 billion. Lynnea also spear-headed the successful effort to launch the first cable TV network in the South Pacific islands.