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Global Buddhism Summit in New Delhi advocates world peace

The summit advocated abandoning war and achieving eternal peace. According to Dalai Lama world peace comes from inner peace and that people need to be educated in the ways to achieve such tranquillity.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Global Buddhist Summit (Image: PMO office)

The two-day Global Buddhist Summit 2023 concluded in New Delhi on April 21, 2023 with the adoption of the New Delhi Declaration. The summit featured deliberations on modes of disseminating and internalizing universal values and to find ways to work together, address the burning challenges both within and globally and offer a sustainable model for the future of the world.

Inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on April 20, 2023, the Summit brought together Buddhist figures and personalities from over 30 countries. Tibetan religious leader Dalai Lama, Dr Abhijit Halder, Director General of the International Buddhist Confederation (IBC) and Ven Dr Dhammapiya, Secretary General IBC, monks, scholars and heads of Buddhist institutions attended the event.

The Dalai Lama addressing the congregation at the Global Buddhist Summit 2023 at the Ashok Hotel in New Delhi, India on April 21, 2023. Photo by Tenzin Choejor

Speaking at the inauguration, Modi said, "There is no problem in the modern world whose solution we could not find in the teachings of the Buddha hundreds of years ago. The war and unrest that the world is suffering today, the Buddha had given solutions centuries ago." He emphasized that Buddha preached abandoning war, and advocated for eternal peace.

Addressing the congregation, Dalai Lama said, "The heart of the Buddha’s teaching is a combination of compassion and wisdom and as Buddhists our task is cultivate these two qualities." He emphasized on the aspect of "dependent rising" and stressed that "Things arise in dependence on other factors. Since nothing is independent, everything comes about through dependent relationships."

The Dalai Lama joining the Heads of International Buddhist Delegations to the Global Buddhist Summit 2023 for lunch at the Ashok Hotel in New Delhi, India on April 21, 2023. Photo by Tenzin Choejor

Apart from the promotion of peace, the summit recognized the importance of Buddhist pilgrimage as a living heritage that promotes spiritual growth, cultural understanding and social harmony. It called on governments and individuals to take action to reduce carbon emissions, protect biodiversity, and preserve natural resources for future generations.

The summit acknowledged that the teachings of Buddha could play a significant role in addressing the multi-faceted crisis. It noted that Nalanda of Dhamma education precedes the modern system of university education, and professes values through Vasudeva Kutumbakam.