Volume 77 / Number 46 - April 16 - 22, 2008
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933
Photo courtesy Satya Graha Forum
Gandhis message of peace blooms in Union Square
Hundreds gathered at Union Square on Sunday, April 6, to kick off the Satya Graha Forum, a monthlong series of events throughout the city honoring Mahatma Gandhis philosophies on nonviolence and the environment. With the Gandhi statue behind them, composer and Buddhist Philip Glass, at podium, spoke with, from left, Satya Graha Forum founder Helen Tworkov, author Mark Kurlansky, Tibetan lama Gelek Rinpoche and Indian singer Falu. Joined by hundreds of peace activists, religious leaders and members of interfaith groups, the speakers each addressed the gathering and joined in a traditional flower petal ceremony, in which thousands of petals were placed at the foot of Gandhis statue. Falu performed traditional Indian songs throughout the event. April marks both the 78th anniversary of the 240-mile Salt March, or Salt Satya Graha, led by Gandhi in protest of the British salt tax, and the 40th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., whose nonviolent approach during the civil rights struggle was inspired by Gandhi. Glasss opera Satyagraha had its Metropolitan Opera premiere last Friday.