Celebrating FOWPAL's 20th Anniversary, International Love and Peace Day and the UN International Day of Democracy
"As the world confronts COVID-19, democracy is crucial in ensuring the free flow of information, participation in decision-making and accountability for the response to the pandemic," said UN Secretary-General António Guterres in honor of the International Day of Democracy, September 15, 2020.
September 15 also marks the FOWPAL International Love and Peace Day. To celebrate these two important days and its 20th anniversary, FOWPAL (Federation of World Peace and Love) held a virtual forum on September 15, 2020. Many conscientious citizens from all over the world shared positive messages in support of the event. FOWPAL also received congratulatory letters from influential leaders, including the prime minister of New Zealand, the president of Ireland, the minister of justice of Zambia, the secretary-general of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and US secretary of education. The event received over 3,500 views.
In 2005, when the United Nations celebrated its 60th anniversary, FOWPAL hosted the World Leader Summit of Love and Peace in New York. Witnessed by H.E. Mr. Leonel Fernández, the then president of the Dominican Republic, UN ambassadors, and NGO leaders, Dr. Hong, Tao-Tze, president of FOWPAL, proclaimed the “Declaration of International Love and Peace Day,” designating September 15 as the "International Love and Peace Day," in hopes that world leaders would exert their influences and jointly create a world of freedom, equality, love, and peace.
At today’s forum, Dr. Hong delivered welcome remarks, stressing that “A world of love and peace is the common aspiration of humanity, and love and peace are the key to integration and problem solving. Human beings are encouraged to participate in international exchange activities in a peaceful, rational, and pragmatic manner to highlight the values of democracy and human rights. Only when conscience, love, and peace coexist can we consolidate the forces of kindness to transform the world and resolve conflicts and global crises with wisdom.”
Justice Anthony Carmona, former president of Trinidad and Tobago, delivered an insightful speech, stressing, “We will not find our way in this mire and against this ruthless enemy COVID-19 by ourselves and personal ingenuity, but rather by universal collaborative efforts that are driven by the simple but potent philosophy of being each other’s keeper and protector.” “Being good and doing good without reciprocity is the ultimate solution to realizing peace, harmony, order and justice for all mankind,” he added.
Over the past 20 years, FOWPAL has worked with world leaders and invited many heads of state to ring the Bell of World Peace and Love, make wishes for peace, and take real actions for peace. In 2008, H.E. Mr. Leonel Fernández, a bell-ringer and the then president of the Dominican Republic, brought the leaders of Columbia, Ecuador, and Venezuela together and successfully defused a possible war in Latin America. Also in 2008, another bell-ringer, H.E. Mr. Abdoulaye Wade, the then president of Senegal, negotiated a peace agreement between Sudan and Chad, ending a five-year conflict. Additionally, in 2003, H.E. Mr. Fradique de Menezes, a bell-ringer and the then president of São Tomé and Príncipe, treated his political foes with forgiveness after a coup.
At today’s event, H.R.H. Queen Diambi Kabatusuila of Kasai Kingdom of the Democratic Republic of Congo, commended FOWPAL for promoting love and conscience and spoke highly of Dr. Hong. “I value his work and I find him absolutely, absolutely extraordinary. He’s reaching out to everyone around the globe, everyone around the planet. It’s absolutely beautiful to see that people are really dedicated their lives to doing such work.”
“I want to take my time and congratulate Dr. Hong and FOWPAL for their contribution to the world,” said Dame Munni Irone, founder of Art 4 Peace Awards. “I’ve traveled the world and I’ve met some top leaders and he stands out always because his platform is universal. His platform is based on culture, tradition, wisdom and that makes a big difference because you can see his success, 20 years of success, and he has changed globally, a positive change. There are very few people who have an opportunity to do that and he has served this planet like no one I know.”
Other leaders also shared their thoughts about love, peace, and democracy. Naaz Farhana, founder president of Dhaka Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Bangladesh, shared that “Human values, good gesture, kindness, peace, love and prosperity go along with democracy. Let us be respectful amongst all nations. Let us be united during COVID-19.”
Nina Goncharova, president of Siberian Center for Eurasian Projects in Russia, extended her greetings to FOWPAL, the UN, and “all the awakened and awakening people of the world.” She shared that “Love is the essence, essence of human soul, essence of life itself, essence of our service to each other. And this is what FOWPAL has been bringing to all people of the world by their simplicity, by their art performances, by their presence, by the wisdom of Dr. Hong.”
“I want to give my face and voice to represent all those women and girls who have faced violence in their lives,” said Titta Kote, CEO and founder of Happy Ambasador Concept in Finland, adding that “By turning my own traumatic experiences into spreading peace and love with helpful healthcare solutions for children and women, I hope to make the world a better place. And together we can make it even better.”
Dr. Abdelmadjid Amrani, professor of political philosophy at University of Batna in Algeria, emphasized the importance of tolerance, peace, love, and hope for the future, adding, “There is a gap between your thought and its object and you have to fill this gap with thinking, freedom, forgiveness, love, and working together in peace and hoping to the future. This is the only way of living in our globalized world.”
“Let’s try to deeply inculcate the ideals of peace in people’s minds of every nation. This can make a huge difference in resolving conflicts and building mutual understanding in the mankind,” said Vandana Chaudhary, co-founder of Rolling Nature & Initiative Earth in India, adding that “Harmony in our lives will only prevail when love and peace reigns our hearts.”
Dr. Ramesh Kumar, head and associate professor of political science at S.D. College in India, said, “We should encourage and empower all individuals for maintaining peace and love to promote the rule of law at local, national, and international levels and to ensure equal access to justice for all.”
Additionally, the Association of World Citizens, and many peace promoters and youth also showed their support for the event through video messages, including Henda D Claro, an Angolan American, psychologist and writer in Angola; Aditya Pandey, a student at City Montessori School in India; PaulKarimi, a civil and structural engineer in Kenya; Omar Francisco Hernández Correa, a student at Polytechnic University of the State of Durango in Mexico; Aadi Malhotra, a student at City Montessori School in India; Md. Sabur Khan, chairman of Daffodil International University; Pallabi Ghosh, advisor to Mission Mukti Foundation in India; Oliver T. Mhuriro, a student at Namibian College of Open Learning (NAMCOL) in Zimbabwe; Palak Tewari, a student at City Montessori School in India; Carl McKay, director of Peace River/Westlock Liberal Association in Canada; Tooba Khan, a student at City Montessori school in India; and Zearl Mitchem, CEO of Zearl Mitchem family radio show, USA.
In the past two decades, FOWPAL has spared no effort to promote love and peace across the planet, and it will continue to work with heads of state and visionary leaders in all fields to unite global citizens to create a world of love and peace!