Pakistan Highlights Gautam Buddha’s Legacy at UN Vesak Day Commemoration

Tue May 21 2024
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UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan underscored the profound legacy of Gautam Buddha, emphasizing his enduring message of peace, compassion, and non-violence during a commemoration marking his birth, enlightenment, and passing on Monday.

Addressing attendees at the United Nations Headquarters on the ‘Day of Vesak’, Ambassador Munir Akram highlighted the global resonance of Buddha’s teachings. The event, co-sponsored by the Permanent Missions of Thailand and Sri Lanka, celebrated the life and influence of Gautam Buddha.

“Our region carries a rich heritage of Buddhist civilization,” Ambassador Akram told delegates. He noted that the Indus Valley civilization in Pakistan, particularly in areas such as Taxila, Swat, and Takht-e-bai, saw Buddhism flourish for over 2000 years, with significant contributions from Buddhist universities in these regions. “Buddhism spread and flourished from there,” he added.

Ambassador Akram articulated Buddha’s timeless precepts for human coexistence – compassion, wisdom, peace, and non-violence. He emphasized the importance of standing up for the weak, the marginalized, and the oppressed, and showing empathy and kindness to the vulnerable. “In our troubled times, the commemoration of Vesak Day is a good moment to renew our commitment to these values,” he stated.

He also noted that Buddha’s teachings are mirrored in the United Nations Charter, which mandates member states to promote and adhere to principles against the use of force, and the suppression of peoples and their human rights. Pakistan, along with the Philippines, regularly presents a resolution on the promotion of interreligious and intercultural dialogue, understanding, and cooperation for peace. This resolution calls for promoting inclusion and unity to combat racism, xenophobia, hate speech, violence, and discrimination.

“We need to promote a culture of peace and non-violence that benefits humanity, in particular the future generations, to create an environment conducive to harmony and mutual understanding,” Akram said.

Gautam Buddha’s journey serves as a beacon for humanity, guiding successive generations towards the pursuit of harmony, empathy, and peaceful coexistence.

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