Praying with the Religions of the World
To the enthusiastic applause of the participants, prayer leaders from eight different faiths took the stage to address participants and lead them in prayers from their respective religious traditions.
Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad (Islam)
Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad is the Grand Imam and Khateeb of Badshahi (Emperor’s) Mosque in Lahore, Pakistan. Built in 1763, Badshahi is the second largest mosque in Pakistan. For the past 11 years, Mr. Azad has played a leadership role in Pakistan’s Muslim community through this mosque.
He has also served as Chairman of the Universal Peace Harmony Conference, Chairman of the Majlis-e-Ulama Conference, Chairman of the Azad Welfare Foundation, member of the Ulama Mashaikh Council of Pakistan, and President of the Council of Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz.
Mr. Azad is a founding member and executive board member of the United Religions Initiative (URI) of Pakistan, an international organization for promoting interfaith dialogue. He has organized and participated in several national and international conferences to promote peace and harmony, including peace and interfaith conferences in the United States, Brazil, Libya, England, India, Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Norway and Egypt. The very first Interfaith Peace Conference in Pakistan was held inside the Badshahi Mosque in 2004, setting a milestone in Pakistan’s history. On that occasion, the Grand Imam invited Fr. James Channan, Regional Coordinator of the URI, to speak to some 5,000 Pakistanis of various faiths. The same year, Mr. Azad participated in a ceremony to plant a peace pole bearing the words May peace prevail on Earth next to the Minar-e-Pakistan (Tower of Pakistan), an important historical site in Lahore.
(Excerpts from Mr. Azad’s address in Urdu are translated here.)
Ladies and gentlemen: I came here from Pakistan with a message of peace and love. I feel very happy to participate in the sixth Symphony of Peace Prayers here in Japan. I am very thankful to my host, Masami Saionji. I have also had the honor or receiving a visit from Mrs. Saionji in Pakistan, where we discussed ways of fostering peace in the world.
Today, people are going through various problems, and terrorism has reached an all-time high. In these circumstances, it is essential for us to gather together and ask why such problems are increasing, and what basic issues lie behind them. The world is becoming a global village. Science has changed our world, so that what once took hours is now done in a few minutes. Now, more than ever before, we need to emphasize the ethics and principles upon which our religions are founded.
This great land where I stand today once sat in the shadows of war. Many people lost their lives, but this brave nation has turned around and now sends a message of peace to the whole world. We can learn a lesson from this peaceful state of Japan.
Let us set aside our disputes and light candles of peace in the world, sending a message to future generations, so that they will follow our lead and continue our progress. Together, let us bring about this change through our peace prayers today. Let us stand together for true culture, tradition, reformation of moral character, peace, harmony, and fraternity throughout the world.
Through the teachings of our religions and through prayer for peace, we can find solutions to the world’s problems and bring about change in the 21st century. Worship and prayers are the tools that enable us to transcend our worldly troubles. Through our peace prayers, we can eliminate terrorism and restore harmony, peace, and fraternity. I would once again like to thank Mrs. Masami Saionji and all the participants who have come here from different countries with messages of love. Thank you.
(spoken by Mr. Azad in Urdu)
Allah Almighty says in the Holy Quran:
We not only created the human being and giants
except of his worship.
(spoken by all in Urdu)
In the name of Allah Almighty, the merciful, most beneficent.
All the praise and glory to Allah Almighty Who is the lord of all the universe.
Who is very kind and merciful. The Lord of judgment day.
We worship Him and get His help.
Give us the straight way, the path of those who received Your reward,
neither the way of those people upon You annoyed
nor the way of those people who left the straight way.
Fr. James Channan, O.P. (Christianity—Dominican Order)
Fr. James Channan is the Prior Vice Provincial (Chief Executive) of the Dominican Ibn-e-Mariam Vice Province. He is also Regional Coordinator of the United Religions Initiative (URI) for Pakistan. The URI is an international organization working in 70 countries to promote interfaith dialogue, harmony and peace. Fr. Channan is known around the world for his interfaith and peace activities. He participated in the Symphony of Peace Prayers and the Round Table Discussion held at Fuji Sanctuary in May 2007. In addition, he was largely responsible for organizing the 2009 SOPP ceremony held in Lahore, Pakistan, which was co-hosted by the URI Pakistan and the National Peace Committee for Interfaith Harmony (government of Pakistan).
It gives me immense joy to be here at Fuji Sanctuary for the Symphony of Peace Prayers 2010. I bring you greetings of peace, joy, compassion, and reconciliation from Pakistan. I feel very honored that you have invited me once again to come here and participate in this grand peace event. I congratulate each one of you for coming here to Fuji Sanctuary to pray for peace.
This sacred place has become an international site and a symbol of peace and healing, where people of different religions, spiritual traditions, nations, and cultures get together to pray for peace and to experience peace, which is happening here right now. As I see the flags of all nations flying here, and in the national symbols of these flags I can feel the presence of all nations on this ground. It brings inner peace and a sense of unity—that we are all one.
For this extraordinary peace event, I congratulate Mrs. Masami Saionji, Mr. Tomohiko Naya, and the entire team of Byakko Shinko Kai, who have organized this great peace event and made it possible.
My dear brothers and sisters: peace is what we need in our hearts, in our families, in our countries, and in the world. Let this peace begin with me. Let us become instruments of peace. All of you are ambassadors of peace. I am sure that all of us can bring positive change to a world which hungers for justice, healing, reconciliation, religious freedom, respect, equality, gender balance, and peace. I congratulate each one of you from the bottom of my heart for all your efforts to bring peace in the world.
I am sure that the tremendous feeling of peace that is being generated here at Fuji Sanctuary at this moment will affect the whole universe. Let us keep on organizing such events to realize our goals and to make our world an abode of peace.
The people of Pakistan, where I come from, are also with you, and we have organized an interfaith peace program in Lahore and other cities. May peace prevail in Japan. May peace prevail in Pakistan. May peace prevail on Earth. Peace be with you all.
While we are gathered here, I would like to offer a Christian prayer, as I am a Christian believer myself. I would like to say the same prayer which Jesus Christ our Lord has taught us, and I invite you all to join me in this prayer:
Lord’s Prayer (spoken by Fr. Channan in English)
Our Father in heaven, holy be your Name,
Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.
Prayer for peace (spoken by all in English)
Most loving and kind God our Father,
I am grateful to you for this opportunity
which you have granted each one of us to be here at Fuji Sanctuary.
You know our hearts and you know our minds
that we have come here from countries of the world to pray for peace.
I believe out of your love you sent Jesus Christ on earth
who was born of a Virgin Mary.
Jesus Christ is the Prince of Peace. He gives us lasting peace.
And as the Christian community is going through
the joyful season of the resurrection of Christ
and today we are celebrating the great feast
of the Ascension of Jesus Christ into Heaven.
May this feast bring lasting peace and joy to the whole world.
Bless our coming together here as one family.
O God, you know that our hearts are longing for peace.
May your peace always remain with us!
May this day be a source of peace and healing in the world!
Bless all those who are seeking and working for peace!
Bless all those who have made this Symphony of Peace Prayers possible!
May peace prevail on Earth! Amen.
Mr. Mikinosuke Kakisaka (Shintoism)
Mr. Mikinosuke Kakisaka is Chief Priest of Tenkawa Shrine in Nara Prefecture, Japan. The shrine’s main building was constructed in the 7th century AD. It has been deeply revered by successive emperors, and became the first hallowed ground of distinguished, high-ranking priests, including the Buddhist monk Kûkai. In addition, Tenkawa Shrine has a deep connection with Noh theatre. The shrine possesses many documents and other materials from Noh plays that have been designated as important cultural properties. Noh plays are performed at the shrine three times a year.
On this bright and refreshing day in May, viewing beautiful Mount Fuji, it is a great pleasure for me to be invited by Byakko Shinko Kai to participate in this event of prayer for peace. I am very grateful for the invitation, and I would like to celebrate this event, which is linked with many people around the world.
In this age of environmental destruction and declining spirituality, I am deeply moved to be part of this ceremony today, and I offer my sincere gratitude. I pray that the time will come when we can share our resources with all living things, giving what we have in abundance and receiving what we lack. I feel that today’s gathering is the beginning of a new path to creating a world of equity and kindness.
It is my heartfelt wish and prayer that our sincere prayers today will permeate heaven and earth, and reach the hearts of people throughout the world, so that this world and all its people may be at peace. And I pray that Byakko Shinko Kai will continue developing and expanding in the years to come.
Prayer (spoken by all in Japanese)
With humility and reverence,
I utter these words before countless deities of heaven and earth.
On this beautiful and solemn sacred land,
with its commanding view of the great Mount Fuji,
people gather from many countries, their spirits uniting heaven and earth,
to pray sincerely and single-mindedly for world peace.
O great deities, receive our prayers in peace and tranquility,
and bestow on us your divine grace and glory, from now into the future,
so that all people may be healthy and live in harmony,
with respect for each other’s lives.
We pray with united hearts that a world of peace,
like a tranquil sea, will be realized on this Earth.
Mr. Shunkai Matsuura (Buddhism—Ritsu sect)
Mr. Shunkai Matsuura was born in 1934. He graduated from Ryukoku University in Kyoto, where he studied Buddhist literature. While in his twenties, he traveled to Burma (Myanmar) to study Buddhist teachings. In 1969, he became chief abbot of Mibu Temple in Kyoto.
From 2001 to 2006, Mr. Matsuura served as the official representative and head of religious affairs of the Ritsu Buddhist sect. From 2006 to March 2010, he served as head priest of the Ritsu sect and the 85th senior priest of Tôshôdai-ji Temple in Nara, the headquarters of the Ritsu school of Buddhism.
Mr. Matsuura is currently chief abbot at Mibu Temple in Kyoto. He heads the organization for upholding the tradition of Mibu Kyogen—a form of pantomime theatre—as well as the Mibu Dainenbutsu Society. In addition, he is engaged in activities for welfare of children and senior citizens. He is the board chairperson of both the Mibu Temple Nursery School and the Mibu Nursing Home, and the head representative of Well Age Mibu, a private nursing home in Kyoto.
My name is Shunkai Matsuura, and I am from the ancient Japanese city of Kyoto. I serve as chief priest of Mibu Temple, which is located in Kyoto’s Nakagyo Ward. This temple is said to have been founded in the year 991, and thus has a history that spans more than a thousand years. It belongs to the Ritsu school of Buddhism, which was founded during the Nara period by the Chinese monk Ganjin, who dedicated his life to propagating Buddhism in Japan. The head temple of the Ritsu sect is Toshodai-ji Temple in Nara.
When Ganjin finally reached Japan after several failed attempts, he spoke about his determination to come here. His concluding phrase is one that I value highly: ‘to nurture our future spiritual ties together.’ It means that he wished to meet and create fruitful relationships with many Japanese people. Just as Ganjin expressed, I too hope to create wonderful connections with all of you here today. Thank you very much.
Prayer (spoken by all in Japanese)
In 604 AD in Japan, Prince Shotoku established a constitution of seventeen articles which can be regarded as a constitution for peace. In Articles I and II, he advocated the following:
I. Value harmony, and make it a principle to avoid quarrels. People are inclined to form groups, and there are few people of integrity who can see clearly. Therefore, many people disobey their elders and superiors, and feud with their neighbors. But when people from all parts of society are cooperative and on good terms, it is only natural that all will be accomplished.
II. Believe in the three treasures—Buddha, the teachings of Buddha, and the Buddhist community. They are the final refuge of all living things, and the ultimate model for all countries. Is there anyone, anywhere, who cannot value this principle? Very few people are truly bad. If people are taught well, they will follow the right path. But, what other than the teachings of Buddha will set their crooked minds straight?
Mother Mangalam (Hinduism)
Mother Mangalam was born in Singapore in 1926. A teacher by profession, her lifelong ambition was to do social work with destitute children and to teach among the poor and the indigent. Influenced by both Hinduism and Christianity, she came to practise spiritual values amid a multi-religious setting, with equal respect for all religious schools of thought. While in the teaching profession, and later as head of a national school, she assisted in the founding of the Pure Life Society and its charities. In 1961, she became president of the society.
In addition to her social and welfare activities, Mother Mangalam served for ten years as vice president of the Malaysia Inter-Religious Organisation (MIRO). Since 1986, Mother Mangalam has been an advisor of the Inter-faith Spiritual Fellowship (INSaF).
Mother Mangalam has received numerous requests to write articles on social, religious, and cultural issues for various magazines and books. Besides writing poetry and a history book for Malaysian schools, she has also worked as editor, publisher, and later, advisor of the Dharma Quarterly, a journal devoted to universal values, culture, philosophy and religion. She has presented about 35 papers over the years, covering religious and social issues, at gatherings, conferences, forums and seminars. Mother Mangalam has received 20 awards from various religious, social, and political organizations, as well as clubs and societies, both locally and overseas.
My humble greetings of peace and light to all the people of different colors, creeds, and cultures assembled here at this august gathering.
Before I continue, permit me to tell you what significance this day has for the Hindus. Hindus observe the auspicious Akshaya Tritiya day on May 16. It falls on the third day of the bright half of the Vaishakha month of the Vedic calendar, when the sun and moon are placed in their sidereal exaltation signs, under Aries and Taurus respectively, an event which occurs only once a year. Vedic wisdom reveals that the day marks the dawn of Earthly civilization in a golden age of paradise aeons ago. Astrologically, too, Akshaya Tritiya is considered to be the most auspicious day of the year.
This day is made more auspicious by this special gathering. This is a momentous period, when the sounds of chants and prayers from many different tongues and faiths ascend to heights unknown, in the majestic presence of the sacred Mount Fuji. The harmonious vibration that pervades the atmosphere will, in time, establish the peace that humankind yearns for. I hope that this spirit of harmonious relationships among us will continue even when we are apart.
Peace, progress, and prosperity are the three ‘P’s that humankind longs for. It is up to us, in our different roles in life, to make this a possibility—to reach the three ‘P’s that man pines for. But, poor man knows not the way. Prayers in unison and follow-up actions with love and concern for all living beings will fulfill his dreams to some extent, but more so if he thinks, breathes and moves in peace, even if confronted with challenges. Such role models among humankind, though rare, will certainly establish peace on Earth. May we be the torchbearers by our lifestyles, and emanate the light of peace. May peace prevail on Earth.
(sung by Mother Mangalam in Sanskrit)
O Supreme One who is the Lord of all the astral forces which affect my life for better or for worse and who removes all the difficulties of Your devotees and gives me the strength and wisdom to overcome any obstacles on my path of progress. My humble prostrations unto you.
Oh Supreme spirit of God who is known as Lord Subramanya when the One becomes the many and who is the commander of all souls and who dwells in the cave of my heart Guha Ananda just waiting to give me the happiness that I seek. To You I surrender.
O God who art the Guru, In your manifestation as
– Brahma the creative principle
– Vishnu the preservative principle
– Maheshwara the principle of re-absorption,
to you my humble prostrations.
You are my father and mother,
You are my relative and friend,
You are my learning and wealth,
You are my all in all.
O Paraashakti / Energy of Siva who is all auspicious and who gives all our needs. I prostrate to thee O Shakti / Energy of Siva in your three expressions (Tryambike) who is All-knowing who sustains and nurtures all.
My humble prostrations to –
Durga – Remover of all negativities within me
Lakshmi – Embodiment of beauty and contentment
Saraswati – Embodiment of Knowledge, Wisdom and Sound
Karunaamrtha Sagar – Ocean of Eternal Mercy
Sarva Vyaadhi Nivarini – Remover of all diseases
Sadasiva Kudumbini – Mother of an ever-blissful family
(In silent inner communion)
May prosperity be unto all,
May peace be unto all,
May fullness be unto all,
May auspiciousness be unto all!
May all be happy,
May all be healthy and free from diseases,
May all see good only.
Let no one undergo suffering!
(sung by all in Sanskrit)
Lead me from the unreal to the real,
Lead me from darkness to light,
Lead me from death to immortality.
(spoken by Mother Mangalam in Sanskrit)
That (Absolute) is full. This (world, being a manifestation of the Absolute) is full. When this (world-process) is taken away (by transcending it through Self-realization), what remains is full (the Absolute). Om Peace, Peace, Peace!
(This last verse is a mystic verse conveying the fullness of the Absolute and its unity with the world.)
Rabbi Ted Falcon, Ph.D. (Judaism)
Rabbi Ted Falcon is a popular teacher of Jewish traditions of meditation and spirituality who explores the frontiers of interfaith spirituality. Ordained in 1968 at the Hebrew Union College Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio, Rabbi Ted served in Los Angeles as a congregational and then a campus rabbi until earning a doctorate in Professional Psychology in 1975. He pursued a career as a spiritually-oriented psychotherapist, and in 1978, founded Makom Ohr Shalom, a synagogue for Jewish spirituality. When he moved to Seattle in 1993, Rabbi Ted and his wife, Ruth Neuwald Falcon, founded Bet Alef Meditative Synagogue, where he served as rabbi until the end of 2009.
Rabbi Ted has taught meditation and spirituality in the United States, Israel, the Czech Republic, and Poland, and was a co-host of Interfaith Talk Radio. He is co-author of Judaism For Dummies and author of A Journey of Awakening: Kabbalistic Meditations on the Tree of Life. His latest book, written with Pastor Don Mackenzie and Sheikh Jamal Rahman, Getting to the Heart of Interfaith: The Eye-Opening, Hope-Filled Friendship of a Pastor, a Rabbi, and a Sheikh, was published in 2009. Rabbi Ted teaches and writes from the heart of Jewish spiritual traditions and shares in interfaith contexts internationally.
I am Rabbi Ted Falcon, and I bring blessings of peace from Seattle, Washington, in the USA. It is an honor for me to be here with you, to share special prayers for peace. Together, we are part of a prayer for peace that is transforming our world. We begin with ourselves, praying that our hearts might open to love. We pray that we might act with respect and compassion toward all others. Then, we pray for peace in our homes, with our families and our friends. Finally, here, in this beautiful and sacred setting, we pray for the peace of all people in all places.
Thank you for this precious opportunity to join with you in supporting the peace that needs to be. I am deeply honored to share these prayers from my Jewish tradition.
(spoken by Rabbi Ted Falcon in Hebrew)
Grant us Peace, Eternal Source of Peace,
that we might realize the blessings of love and mercy, goodness and beauty,
that all humankind receives in Your Light.
In that Light we perceive the Way called Torah;
a Way of loving kindness, righteousness, blessing, and mercy.
May we all know the blessing of Thy Peace.
Blessed are You, Eternal One,
the One Who blesses all humankind with peace.
The Eternal One gives strength to His people;
the Eternal One blesses His people with peace.
The Eternal One blesses and keeps you always.
The Presence of the Eternal illuminates you and is gracious to you.
The Eternal Presence fills you and gives you peace.
(spoken by all in Hebrew)
May the One Who makes Peace in the heights create peace for us,
for all the household of Israel, for all the household of Ishmael,
and for all humankind.
And let us say: Amen.
Blessed are You, Holy One,
Who shelters all of us within Your Being.
Pastor Don Mackenzie (Christianity—United Church of Christ)
Pastor Don Mackenzie is a minister with the United Church of Christ. He has served churches in Princeton, New Jersey, Hanover, New Hampshire and Seattle, Washington. In addition he has served on the administrative faculty at Princeton Theological Seminary. He holds a BA from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, an M.Div. and Th.M. from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. from New York University.
His passion for interfaith work began as child in a family where the essential dignity of every human being was honored. He lived and worked in Egypt as part of a college summer program and in Lebanon in 1966-67. His seminary senior concentration was in the politics of the Near East and North Africa. It seemed natural for him to become a part of the team that is known today as the ‘Interfaith Amigos,’ a team that includes his colleagues and friends, Rabbi Ted Falcon and Sheikh Jamal Rahman. Together they have hosted a weekly radio program, taken a trip to the Middle East and authored Getting to the Heart of Interfaith: The Eye-Opening, Hope-Filled Friendship of a Pastor, a Rabbi and a Sheikh (June 2009).
I am Pastor Don Mackenzie, and I am deeply honored to be part of this ceremony for peace. I come from a family with a deep commitment to peace, and I feel that today, I am carrying that commitment forward—a commitment I share with my dear colleagues, Rabbi Ted Falcon and Sheikh Jamal Rahman.
This sacred space has always evoked a sense of cooperation and harmony, qualities badly needed in today’s world. Thank you for inviting me to share with you in these precious moments.
(spoken by Pastor Mackenzie in English)
Holy One of Being, come near to us on this holy day and hear our prayers. Because we pray for peace and because we know that peace is in and from your heart, we feel blessed to be able to speak today about this urgent and moral need.
First, we pray for spiritual guidance and discipline. We pray that we may be better able to discern your presence, to hear your holy Word, and together wake up more and more fully to your holy presence, your energy and your dreams for us and for all of creation.
Second, we pray that you will give us what we require to learn the ways and make the tools we need to convert the consequences of conflict from violence and harm to creative and imaginative ways to live together to the end that the common good is served.
And third we pray, as always, that salvation will come to all of creation that we may become instruments of your salvation, your healing!
(spoken by all in English)
Within these prayers, however, we confess that often we do not feel equipped or strong enough to respond to your calling of us. We become frustrated and despair much too quickly concerning our ability to cooperate with your purposes. We feel we lack the proper training, the tools, the will and the energy we need to help with bringing of peace to this world.
Bring us hope and the energy required to sustain hope! Remind us of the great words of the Apostle Paul who said, ‘Suffering produces endurance, endurance produces character, character produces hope and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us’ (Romans 5:3a-5). Thanks be to God! Amen!
Sheikh Jamal Rahman (Islam—Sufism)
Sheikh Jamal Rahman is co-founder of and Muslim Sufi Minister at the Interfaith Community Church in Seattle. He is also adjunct faculty at Seattle University and co-host of an interfaith talk television program. Sheikh Rahman participated in the 2007 SOPP ceremony and Round Table Discussion at Fuji Sanctuary and was deeply moved by the remarkable work that Byakko does to promote peace and harmony in the world. He participated in and worked towards the success of the Seattle SOPP in April 2008 with Masami and Rika Saionji. Sheikh Rahman has a passion for interfaith work and believes that ‘interfaith’ is not about conversion but about becoming a more complete human being. His congregation consists of Muslims and non-Muslims. He collaborates regularly with Rabbi Ted Falcon and Pastor Don Mackenzie. Together they travel frequently, co-facilitating workshops and retreats. They are affectionately known as the ‘Interfaith Amigos.’
Sheikh Rahman is the author and co-author of three books: The Fragrance of Faith: The Enlightened Heart of Islam, Out of Darkness Into Light: Spiritual Guidance in the Quran with Reflections from Jewish and Christian Scriptures, and Getting to the Heart of Interfaith: The Eye-Opening, Hope-Filled Friendship of a Pastor, a Rabbi and a Sheikh.
My name is Jamal Rahman. I am a Muslim Sheikh, or teacher, in a house of worship called Interfaith Community Church in Seattle, Washington, USA. In our place, we have people of many different religions—Christians, Jews, Muslims, Native Americans, Buddhists, Hindus, Baha’is, Sikhs, and others, all praying together. In fact, on Sunday morning in Seattle, congregants from our community, in support of the SOPP, join you in prayers for world peace.
Three years ago, I had the enormous privilege of being with you in your sacred presence. My soul was profoundly touched by the vibrations of so many hearts at Mount Fuji, all praying fervently for world peace. Two years ago, we were deeply honored and filled with joy to have Madame Masami Saionji visit us at Interfaith Community Church in Seattle and bless us so graciously by praying with the congregants. As you can guess, I’m a very lucky man, having been blessed twice—by you three years ago, by Madame Masami Saionji two years ago, and now again this year. I am very grateful.
Islam comes from the root word meaning ‘peace’—from ‘salam.’ All my Muslim brothers and sisters from all over the world join you in praying ‘May peace prevail on Earth.’
Call to Prayer (sung by Sheikh Rahman in Arabic)
God is Greatest.
I bear witness that there is no reality, but One reality.
I bear witness that Mohammed is the messenger of God.
Come, come to prayer.
Come, come for your highest spiritual enlightenment.
God is greatest.
Nothing exists separate from God!
Surah Fatiha (spoken by all in Arabic)
We begin in the Name of God, Everlasting Mercy, Infinite Compassion.
Praise be to God, Loving Lord of all the worlds.
Everlasting Mercy, Infinite Compassion.
Eternal Strength of every living being,
Whose Majestic Power embraces us on the day of the great return.
Only You do we adore, and to You alone do we cry for help.
Guide us, O God, on the path of Perfect Harmony, the path of those whom You have blessed with the gifts of Peace, Joy, Serenity, and Delight, the path of those who have not been brought down by anger, the path of those who have not been lost along the way.
To conclude this portion of the program, Byakko Chairperson Masami Saionji led participants in the prayer for world peace which was first advocated by Masahisa Goi, the founder of Byakko Shinko Kai, over fifty years ago. Mrs. Saionji first spoke the prayer alone in Japanese—Sekai jinrui ga heiwa de arimasu yô ni— and after a meditative moment of silence, all participants spoke the prayer in Japanese five times. Then, Mrs. Saionji spoke the prayer in English—May peace prevail on Earth—and after another moment of silence, participants spoke the prayer in English five times.