International Thanksgiving 21 Nov 1977 at UN – Excerpts SUMMARY

Filed under Thanksgiving - Gratitude

On 21 November 1977 the Meditation Group sponsored the third celebration at United Nations Headquarters of International Thanksgiving with a mid-day programme of music, slides and guest speakers.


In the evening the Group hosted a vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner to express its gratitude to all those who so kindly participated in its activities in 1977. Brief excerpts from the statements follow.

for full text see:International Day of Thanksgiving 1977 Nov 21 at UN

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H. E. Mr. Zenon Rossides. Permanent Representative of Cyprus: We have to adapt ourselves to the means of our times. The greatest scientists today are those who speak of the need of spirituality in order to improve our conditions. Science with its technology cannot go further. As a matter
of fact, it has gone too far and requires a corresponding advance in moral principles. Now, we come to spirituality. Man is made of body, intellect and spirit. Usually people don’t think of this; they think only of the body and mind. Intellect is the function of the brain based on actual, concrete facts. Spirit is something far above that. It is the communion of the individual man with the universe..
. . Therefore, I attach great importance to these spiritual gatherings because the hope of mankind surviving is through the rise of spirituality. And we have, I am glad to say, gre at signs, great indications during recent events for the prevalence of the spirit in the world.

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Sister Elizabeth Espersen of Thanks-Giving Square: I am humbled to be here, for this is a great place, a global center where the vision of man is dreamed into the future shape of his destiny. Statesmen and kings, presidents and patriarchs , ambassadors and makers of peace have peopled this place; it is hallowed by their memory and presence. Yet I dare to come here, for the place that I come from, though tiny, possesses great vision. It is a vision called “thanks-giving,” and it lies at the heart of life. The United Nations of course, shares this vision profoundly, calling it “peace. “

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H. E. Mr. lgnace Karuhije, Permanent Representative of Rwanda (translated from French by Yvette Ripplinger): Our problems are very numerous and the obstacle almost insurmountable Bu t we are full of hope, for fifteen years ago, we never thought that we would have come to this
point. But we are working under the protection of the Almighty and we believe in His direct role in our success, since failures are due to our human imperfections.


I shall conclude by offering thanks to the eternal God who has ceaselessly guided us through difficulties and pitfalls of all kinds. I ask Him in the name of my country, its leaders and its peoplrto grant us His bened ictions and to guide us wisdom.

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H. E. Lie. lulio Asensio-Wunderlich, Permanent Representative of Guatemala: Let me begin by reading a wonderful concept that I found on a Meditation Group brochure. For it says,

‘The outer message of the United Nations is Peace.

The inner message of the United Nations is Love.

The inmost message of the United Nations is Oneness.”[*1]

And I think this is very appropriate for my brief comments.

It was just over a year ago that my country was shaken, broken by a terrible earthquake that was one of the worst that had been felt in this continent. We had some 75,000 people die; we had some 20,000 persons that were wounded and many of them are permanently crippled. The
world was informed of this terrible natural catastrophe on the very first day, which was the fourth of February of last year. And it was just a few
hours later that we in Guatemala received the love of the people of the United Nations, of the world.

This love was represented by all sorts of efforts to help our people overcome the tragic circumstances.

If the inner message of the United Na tions is love, that message was expressed loudly in Guatemala in February last year. And if the inmost message of the United Nations is oneness, then oneness was also present when people of every part of the world, of all ages, little boys and little girls from schools throughout the world, sent letters, toys and assistance. I personally give more importance to the little tokens of love and oneness that we received than the massive help sent by governments and by international assistance, without which, of course, we would not have been able to stand on our feet.

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Dr. Robert Muller, Deputy Under-Secretary-General: Thanks-Giving Square is a place where you can feel the fundamental urge of the human being to be grateful for the gift of life, that unique, mysterious outcropping from darkness and the void, that flowering of “existence” under sunlight and the stars. Yes, out of a cell, of a seed, as from the center of a spiral or the impact of a sound, we are grown into a cosmos, a universe of our own, sentient, seeing, feeling, thinking, linked mysteriously with the rest of the universe, capable of loving and encompassing the entire world in our heart, to feel in ourselves the divine and to lift ourselves to the Godhead on our own volition.


You can feel this in the Square. It is something very unique, and I am grateful that the United Nations has been associated with it.

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Excerpt from a statement received from H. E. Mr. Tan Sri Zaiton Ibrahim, Permanent Representative of Malaysia: Unfortunately, under the pressure of modern life and modern techniques of agriculture, harvest festivals are slowly dying away. In Malaysia, for instance, while no doubt
such occasions in the past were frequently held, nowadays they are virtually non-existent. However, much research has been done and many of
the traditional songs, dances and other cultural activities common to such celebrations are being revived and performed on suitable occasions so
that Malaysians can be aware and be proud of their rich cultural heritage.

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The United Nations is a group of pilgrims on a journey.

As the pilgrims walk along the path of light toward the same destination , they feel mutual appreciation.

From appreciation they go one step ahead to love.

From love comes oneness.
Oneness is the perfection of man in God and the Satisfaction of God in man. [*2]

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Reference Note:

[*1] excerpt from talk “The Inner Message Of The United Nations“, by Sri Chinmoy in Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium on January 4, 1973. Talk appears  in, The Tears Of Nation-Hearts,Agni Press, 1974.


[*2] excerpt from talk “The United Nations And World Union “, by Sri Chinmoy in Dag Hammarskjold Auditorium on 18 October 1974. Talk appears  in, Union-Vision,, Agni Press, 1975.

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