Last night members of the New Zealand Sri Chinmoy Centre participated in a nation vigil for Christchurch organised by the New Zealand Interfaith Group. The event was held simultaneously in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin with various faith, spiritual and interfaith communities participating through video presentation, prayer, song, meditation and reflection. The members of our Christchurch Sri Chinmoy Centre sang two songs dedicated to New Zealand and Christchurch that were written by our meditation teacher Sri Chinmoy – and recited two of his prayers. Members of the Auckland Sri Chinmoy Centre recited a selection of Sri Chinmoy’s poems and sang one of his songs – all in the theme of ‘hope’. They also offered a short flute recital featuring two of Sri Chinmoy’s melodies.
Members of the Christchurch Sri Chinmoy Centre singing at the National Interfaith
vigil for Christchurch at St Michael and All Angels Anglican Church in Christchurch.
The vigil events were very soulful and represented a great sense of solidarity and oneness with the situation in Canterbury. Listening to the various presentations in Auckland, I could clearly perceive a deep appreciation for the uniqueness and beauty of Christchurch and an admiration for the people of Canterbury – an appreciation for their stoic spirit and pride of community. There seemed also a need to highlight the many opportunities that have come from this earthquake experience – locally and nationally – a calling forth of spirit and a focus on the quintessential qualities of oneness, compassion, service, simple kindness, love in action.
Members from various faith groups who participated in the Auckland vigil
at St Matthew Anglican Church in central Auckland on Saturday night.
These are of course the qualities that underpin happy and progressive communities and that make a community strong, special and unique. They are a great foundation for all life and the very qualities that will be needed to rebuild Christchurch in an environment of progress, care and concern. While much has been lost in Canterbury since September 4, 2010, I would say that much has also been gained from the experience – more than we probably realise. At the least our resilience, determination and the spirit of communal oneness will have strengthened and that in itself is very valuable and something to be grateful for.