Statements of Support and Encouragement were received from:
“This International Peace Congress on our common humanity and the inseparability of our being, will no doubt contribute to the dawn of a new consciousness of ourselves, a consciousness of unity in the midst of diversity. We must all be the change we want to see in the world, make a difference by serving others and share the passion for a sustainable, just, joyful and compassionate humanity.”
THE POST, New York, Islamabad, London
2 July, 2007
The most interesting aspect of this World Congress of Planetary Initiatives is that the Motif is Peace, via the modality of understanding to bring out intellectually both our commonality and difference. The organizers urge all to of us think afresh old ideas and to think of new initiatives as yet left unexplored by the inertia of inherited paradigms, prejudices, hatred and history. The conference will seek to establish a Cross-Dialog between diverse disciplines as many participants who will be challenging, and be challenged by, other panelists in fields quite other than their own.
From the perspectives of advancing genuine international, peace and goodwill, clearly the heavy emphasis on the lingering difficulties of the sub-Continent are evident. May be with this in view there is a manifest endeavor to bless the conference with two unique personalities in the long list of distinguished delegates. From the Islamic world we have a Dr. Farooq Hassan who was referred to as the John Rawls of contemporary Islam by leading Indian newspapers when he visited that country recently; he is a visionary devoted to idealism of Socrates and Jefferson and a scholar of immense recognition, and from neighboring India the privilege of having Shabana Azmi, the regal queen of ideas and of women’s rights whose stature needs no introduction. We feel that in this milieu it will be a rare treat to see such dignitaries in the US this summer.
Fantastic. A life-affirming experience….a conference which has avoided an exercise of ego massaging or ego boosting. A grand opportunity to meet a number of exceptional people…this conference truly changed me forever. George Joseph, Panelist
Wonderful conference…I will continue to draw strength from this Conference in my own work to empower the marginalized people of our world. Thank you. Shaban Azmi, Panelist
I have felt the strong spirit at this conference with so many dedicated and diverse people of peace drawn together in important dialogue. I am more hopeful about world peace because I was here. Patricia Matthews, participant
This has been a unique and transforming experience in terms of engaging in such important process with so many wonderful and diverse people. Marlena Buzzell, participant
I want to thank everyone who planned Congress 2007. You made it possible for me to learn from so many beautiful people from all parts of the world – united in yearning and searching and working for peace and justice. Roy Bhaskar, Panelist
What a distinct pleasure to part of such a noble cause. The energy of this conference was an inspiring ray of light! Its energy makes my work feel so much easier. I look forward to doing more to transform the world. Kyle Burdash, participant
We want to offer our sincere congratulations for the success of this first congress. We hope that we will be able to create something similar in Latin America. Martin Almada and Carlos Mamani, Panelists
Thank you for the opportunity to be part of something new, yet old. This conference opened minds, hearts, spirits and emotions. You were able to create an environment for people to see what it feels like to “be the change.” Thank you again for allowing me to be part of something very exciting. Lacee Harris, Ute Nation,Panelist
Many thanks to the Congress 2007 organizers – you created a conference made up of difference countries persons, nations, colors…but all people with the same warm hearts to call forth peace in the world. Like a candle, the peace will become a fire to spread everywhere in the future. Ma Huidi, Panelist
Thank you so much for this opportunity to come together as a global family. It was an unparalleled experience to participate in a dialogue that was like no other I have ever encountered. I did not expect to experience so much unity among so much diversity! It was truly magical. Rhiannon Lawrence, Participant
I have spent my life attending conferences. But this was not a conference—it was a life changing experience. Kudos to you all. John Hobson, Panelist
I came with reservations thinking this would be one more feel good event with nothing to achieve or solve. But, I have been happily proven wrong. Thank you for making possible this wonderful exchange of ideas and spirit. The world is a better place – I am a better person. – Candi Smith, participant
Thank you for allowing me to be part of this great conference – to share and be one with all these great and wonderful, loving people coming together in the name of “world peace.” My cup overflows with such profound love and oneness evidenced by the love and respect I have felt in this conference. Te Araiwini, Participant
A very essential beginning! A thrust into the future. Hopefully it will lead to many more get togethers – over time to further explore the issues – in the 2nd Congress. Keith Buzzell, Panelist
Dear Congress 2007 committee:
For many of us who live in the so-called developing countries the USA is seen as crucial to the global prospects of sustainable development and ecological regeneration. Can the world’s richest and most powerful country put its act together and summon enough of resolve to lead us all out of the serious social and ecological crises we are experiencing worldwide?
Congress 2007 was a shining example that there were enough of people in the US to carry the beacon of hope. There were people from all over the world at the Congress and they were all doing very significant work in the areas of conflict-resolution and peace, women’s issues, human rights, ecological action and connecting spirituality with social transformation. But I had never before been exposed to so many creative social thinkers and activists from the US. I had the sense that with Congress 2007 the USA was finally beginning to take the lead. I came back convinced that even if the United States was an important part of the problem it was also, very definitely, part of the solution.
I took part in two panels related to Spirituality/Religions and Ecology. The Spirituality /Religions panel underlined the importance of faith in strengthening our commitment to create societies that were more geared to kindness and human compassion rather than one based on ruthless competition. Spiritualities and religions could create the ethical and moral impetus to promote pluralism, participatory democracy, human rights and ecological concern. The Ecology panel discussion underlined the urgency of finding ways and means to have a new energy policy that was not so dependent on fossil fuels. There was also a strong feeling that unless we looked at the earth as a sacred space, to be nurtured, instead of a mere resource to be exploited and plundered, we would not move away from the present destructive policies.
I came away with the feeling that Congress 2007 was the first of its kind to combine rigorous analysis with spiritual insight. The ‘secular’ and the ‘spiritual’ fused together to offer fresh hope to our beleaguered planet. I sincerely hope that Congress 2007 will lead to 2008, 2009, 2010, and on and on… giving fresh and significant impetus to planetary regeneration.
Fireflies Intercultural Centre,
mobile tel: 9945501146
Office tel: 91-80-28432130