International Prayers for Peace in Sri Lanka

By Thilak S. Fernando

' Society is the backbone of the whole country. If you have virtue, the towns will have virtue tomorrow. If you have strength, towns will be strong. If you are quarrelsome, the towns will be affected by it. Learn to live and work in amity. Make the joyful experience of today a permanent feature of your life. Factions and parties in villages are the bane of our community life. Well, Man is Divine. He is really here on a holy mission, for a divine purpose. To consider him as mean or weak or sinful is a great mistake. That is itself a great sin. Man must earn his birthright, namely peace ( shanthi).'

Observing such inspirational spiritual messages from Sri Sathya Sai Baba, His devotees around the world are preparing for an international prayer session on 4 July 1998, to seek His grace and guidance to restore peace and tranquillity in Sri Lanka. On 4th July 1998 at 6.30 p.m. (individual local times) three Sai centres in Canada, three in the USA, three in Madras, several centres in India, in Colombo, all centres in Jaffna and several centres in Batticaloa will be linked with the London focal point at Stoneydown Park Primary School, Pretoria Avenue, (off Forest Road), Walthamstow London E17, to send mammoth vibrations via group devotional songs ( Bajans) sung in three languages, English, Sinhala & Tamil.

This is the first anniversary of special Sai prayers by Sri Lankan expatriates, organised by the Walthamstow Sai Centre in London for their ' brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka to live in Peace and harmony'. In July 1998, two Sri Lankan Sai devotees, Amalan and Wasanthan sparked off the idea, initially with a mixture of Sinhala and Tamil devotees praying to Sai Baba for peace. Encouraged by the response and equally recognising the dire need for everlasting peace in Sri Lanka these two pioneers have widened their spiritual horizons internationally this year, the outcome of which will be the unique international prayer session where in every heart a single pointed aim and wish for peace and unity in Sri Lanka. A special feature in London will be that the Sinhala, Tamil & Muslim devotees who are believers in interfaith will be singing in all three languages, Sinhala, Tamil and English.

Sai Baba says there is only one religion, 'The Religion of Love', there is only once race, 'The Race of Humanity' and there is one God and He is omnipresent. Sai Baba has a single and simple message to all mankind - 'Start the day with love, spend the day with love and end the day with love - that's the way to God', a simple and easy enough to understand but equally difficult sustain. He says, 'man should have muscles of iron and nerves of steel. Then his resolution will itself generate the necessary confidence; and that will win over opposition. For the crop of life, courage and confidence are the best manure; they are also the best insecticides. Be like lions in the spiritual field, rule over the forest of the senses and roam fearlessly with full faith in victory. Be heroes, not zeroes'.

The programme will start with three OM Karams followed by Gayathri Mantha, Sai Ashtothra Satha Namavali ( reciting 108 names of SAI), 21 songs in all three languages and ending up with silent prayer to Sri Sai Sathya Sai Baba to resore peace in Sri Lanka and in the world.

Those who wish to be a part of this spiritual exercise are requested to contact Amalan or Wasanthan . Contact phone numbers are : 0181-926 0393, 0181-923 1662, 0181 531 9104 and 0956 375526.