Samani Pratibha Pragya on the 2004 Parliament of World's Religions
at Barcelona, Spain
By Carla Geerdes
Samani Pratibha Pragya together with Samani Punya Pragya from JVB London participated in the 2004 Barcelona Parliament of World's Religions from July 7-13th. Samani Pratibha Pragya delivered a video message from His Holiness Acharya Mahaprajna. About 7000 people from all over the world did not feel discouraged by the high fees exclusively for registration (475$ for all days, group reduction 375$, entry for one day: 60 Euros one person, children from 6 years on paying half the price) and participated to the event. Many interested people practised secondary boycott by not participating and the local newspapers criticised this policy of making money with a religious gathering. The participants enjoyed the occasion to meet and discuss with representants of the diverse religions, as did Samani Pratibha Pragya from JVB London who did not miss the occasion to exchange views with Sikhs, Christians, Jews, and Muslims, for quoting only a choice of her discussion partners.
The following interview on the phone was given by her.
HN4U : How many people could you reach apart from the registered participants?
Samani Pratibha Pragya : There was one event on July 8th in the Public Corner of the Forum where we reached about 200 people. For aproximately one hour we gave brief informations on Jainism, followed by an introduction to Preksha Meditation which was pursued by a Preksha Meditation session and Preksha Yoga Asanas and concluded by chanting Mantras and prayers. This event was recorded by UNESCO-Television.
HN4U: Did you conduct other meditation sessions?
Samani Pratibha Pragya : In the evening of July 10th during a public event on the place of the 'Sagrada Famiglia' [A famous not yet finished cathedral conceived by the famous Barcelonian master of architecture Antoni Gaudi. Editors]) we gave a meditation session in the open space from 8-9 p.m. where about 6000 participants of the World's Religions Parliament were gathered.
In the morning of July 13th from 9-10 a.m. we had 170 participants to the meditation session with brief introduction and Asanas.
HN4U : Which questions were mostly put to you?
Samani Pratibha Pragya : Two main questions, the first was 'Who are you?' We told them that we are Jain nuns from India training people in non-violence. The second was 'Why are you keeping the hanky?' So we answered that according to Jain philosophy there are air-bodied beings whom we do not want to harm on one hand, on the other hand we are keeping the hanky for our own health and to restrain from too much speaking.
HN4U: From which countries were the people you talked to?
Samani Pratibha Pragya : There were people from all over the world and from all religions of the world, so nationality was not primarily a point of matter.
HN4U : What was your daily program?
Samani Pratibha Pragya : We participated in different lectures on Sikhism, Christianity, Judaism, talked to the people of the Jain community, gave informations on Jainism and inspired people to practise non violence in daily life. These are the essentials of our program from July 7th to 11th.
Information Source : www.herenow4u.de/Pages/eng/Articles/InterviewwithSamani Pratib.htm