Perez de Cuellar: Immortality's Rainbow-Peace

Part I — Perez de Cuellar: Immortality's Rainbow-Peace

Humanity's cherished dream

"Peace — the word evokes the simplest and most cherished dream of humanity. Peace is, and has always been, the ultimate human aspiration."

With these soulful words, the reality-dreamer in our Secretary-General reminds us that the age-old dream of peace is not merely a human dream but a divine vision, which is slowly, steadily and unerringly moulding and shaping the world's destiny.

Speech versus action

But the pragmatic realist in our Secretary-General immediately alerts us:

"And yet our history overwhelmingly shows that while we speak incessantly of peace, our actions tell a very different story."

A new age of world peace

The world has ceaselessly struggled, immeasurably suffered and significantly achieved things meaningful and fruitful. Nevertheless, the dream of peace is still a far cry. The supreme Pilot of the United Nations offers us abundant encouragement:

"To say that we have perhaps entered a new age of world peace does not sound half as fanciful today as it would have a year ago. In their respective idioms, the leaders of the two most powerful States in the world have said it at the United Nations. People all around the globe have greeted our progress in moving regional conflicts towards their solution with a new mood of optimism and of faith in the workings of multilateral diplomacy."

The world is steadily progressing, although not always to our great satisfaction, Therefore, the human in us at times may be sadly discouraged. But on the strength of our progress-loving oneness with the world-evolution, we unmistakably see the turtle-progress-speed of the world.

The price of peace

Peace is humanity's sleepless and breathless need. Needless to say, no earthly human sacrifice can ever be too great to make for the Heavenly divine peace. According to the seer-statesman Mr. Perez de Cuellar:

"Peace has its price. In terms of political compromise, of accommodation, even of short-term disadvantage for the sake of the longer gain, the price may be considerable. It requires courage and statesmanship. In terms of finances, the price is negligible. In a pragmatic sense, war's devastation dwarfs the costs of peace. And in a moral sense, there is no price to place on single human life."

Peace requires effort

We are badly mistaken if we think that peace will miraculously enter into our lives unconditionally. The Secretary-General's guiding eye tells us that to achieve peace we need both fearless persistence and endless faith:

"Let us not forget that peace does not come accidentally or automatically. The impressive progress we are making to end a number of conflicts is the result of hard effort, in some cases over many years. The United Nations has been at the forefront of that effort."

A humane peace

The absence of war is not and cannot be the real peace. Real peace is the unmistakable establishment of celestial harmony and universal love. The head of the United Nations family graciously tells us:

"The peace that we desire is not the peace of the cemeteries, the peace of the concentration camps or the prisons. It is a profoundly humane peace, free from all physical or spiritual violence and founded on two indissociable values which are none the less difficult to reconcile: justice and freedom. The feeling of world solidarity which I mentioned earlier as a force for peace can inspire only men who are free and aspire to equality."

The Charter

The U.N. Pilot tells us that the United Nations Charter is humanity's unparalleled friend, confidently leading us towards the supreme destination of immortal satisfaction: world-peace. The Charter embodies the vast dignity of illumining vision and awakens us to the fundamental human needs:

"The United Nations Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights proclaim that peace can grow only from justice. It demands respect for the human rights and fundamental freedoms of every individual."

A universal undertaking

The great player of the universal peace-game in the Secretary-General lovingly teaches us that peace is a game to be played by all-a game that needs the conscious and self-giving participation of all human beings and nations, large and small, powerful and week, illumined and unillumined:

"In awarding their Peace Prize to the peace-keeping forces of the United Nations, the Nobel Committee recognises that the quest for peace is a universal undertaking involving all the nations and peoples of the world."

The common good of mankind

Division is cast aside, suspicion is buried in oblivion, faith in all human beings is restored when all nations scrupulously, devotedly and untiringly work together. Then only can they proudly invoke and reveal the peace-sun of eternal love and universal oneness. In the words of the universal statesman:

"Nowadays, the State's morality has to be in keeping with the morality of mankind, and all political decisions are the outcome of a compromise between purely national interests and the interests of the international community. It is on this world ethic that peace, the supreme universal good, is based. To build peace is in fact to abolish frontiers, to transcend private interests and pursue the common good of all mankind."

Sustaining momentum towards peace

True, the world's recent achievements are significant encouragements, but these achievements are shockingly insignificant when we measure them against our quenchless thirst for ultimate achievements. "Never give up, never give up" is the birthless and deathless motto of aspiring humanity. Here the great worshipper of the all-embracing and all-illumining temple of the world tells us:

"We cannot rest on our laurels. It is of the utmost importance that the positive trends which have recently emerged are strengthened and extended to other issues- some of them of major importance-which still remain unresolved. The present historic moment calls for a firm resolve on the part of all Member States to sustain the momentum for peace, to consolidate the recent improvements in international relations and to expand the areas of agreement on issues of common concern. The climate of conciliation should not be allowed to prove transitory."

The answer to injustice and despair

At the moment unfortunate humanity has not discovered an effective answer to the untold world-despair, but we do know that self-giving will be the eventual answer, the only answer. And for that we are awaiting God's choice Hour. The momentous utterance of the Secretary-General runs:

"Since injustice and despair find expression in violence, everything that the United Nations does to give assistance to the countries that suffer the most, economically and financially, contributes to world-peace."

The builders of peace

Peace is not the sole monopoly of the elite. Peace is not the sole monopoly of the chosen few. Peace is for all human beings who are walking along the world-path. Peace is nothing other than a spontaneous flow of humanity's life-river. How beautiful and fruitful are the revelations of the U.N. architect:

"Peace is not a matter only for statesmen, soldiers and diplomats, but also for peoples themselves. Peace is not just the outcome of Government decisions. Peace is a dynamic process which each individual can impede or promote. As a French philosopher once said: 'Peace is built from day to day,' and we, my dear friends, are the builders."

Children and peace

A childlike heart is of supreme importance if we sincerely want to fulfil the beautiful dream of the child's world. And who are the ones unmistakably qualified to perform this momentous task? It is the peace-lovers and the truth-servers who are singularly qualified. The Secretary-General says:

"Our task is to plant the seeds of peace in the mind of every child. Young people must be brought up in the spirit of peace, justice, freedom, mutual respect and understanding. We must heed the Declaration of the Rights of the Child which insists that each child must be able to develop normally in health and with freedom and dignity. We must never forget that children everywhere are entitled to our special protection and care."

A time of opportunities

Individuals and nations alike are receiving powerful glimpses of the peace-fulfilling reality-body, the United Nations. The Secretary-General's confidence-surcharged message is that the United Nations is at once earth's colossal hope and Himalayan promise:

"It is now a time of opportunities which we must seize. Nations are talking to one another again, and more openly. They have reached important new agreements such as on disarmament, arms control and the protection of the ozone layer. They are more willing to use the techniques and institutions the Charter provides. Nations now recognise yet again that only the purposes and principles of the Charter can guide us to a peaceful and prosperous world. They understand once more that, ultimately, they can end some of the world's most stubborn threats to peace only by using the United Nations."

Soldiers of peace

Yes, humanity's heart should be surcharged with aspiration, humanity's eyes with inspiration and humanity's arms with power. What for? Not for destruction, but for the correction of the mind, the perfection of the life and the satisfaction of the heart. It is the bounden duty of each world-citizen to be a soldier of peace. Beautifully, powerfully and convincingly the Secretary-General states:

"These soldiers of peace are military forces interposed to prevent the use of force. They carry arms only to forestall shooting and conflict. In their composition, they reflect an aspiration for peace, stability and security that knows no frontiers."

The Nobel Peace Prize

Each member of the United Nations is a force, and the source of this force is either a human desire or a divine will. The human desire cherishes the love of power. The divine will cherishes the power of love. The Nobel Peace award to the United Nations gloriously declares the victory of the power of soulful love and fruitful oneness. Let us learn from the Secretary-General what the higher will accomplishes in and through us for the world-family:

"Peace-keeping operations symbolise the world-community's will to peace and represent the impartial, practical expression of that will. The award of the Nobel Peace Prize to these operations illuminates the hope and strengthens the promise of this extraordinary concept."

Military non-violence

The real power does not conquer. The real power illumines. The real power liberates. The real power fulfils. The U.N. Pilot's glowing revelation:

"The technique which has come to be called peace-keeping uses soldiers as the servants of peace rather than as the instruments of war. It introduces to the military sphere the principle of non-violence. It provides an honourable alternative to conflict and a means of reducing strife and tension, so that a solution can be sought through negotiation. Never before in history have military forces been employed internationally not to wage war, not to establish domination and not to serve the interests of any Power or group of Powers, but rather to prevent conflict between peoples."

Every day devoted to peace

Sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice within, sacrifice without-sacrifice, the secret and sacred achievement above all others. To the brave self-givers, the Secretary-General's mind is all appreciation and his heart is all admiration:

"No day of peace should pass without a special salute to the brave men and women of our international peace-keeping forces. For them, every day is devoted to peace. For this, they have earned the respect, the admiration and the gratitude of the international community."

Setting a course for the future

I give, you take. You give, I take. It is this reciprocal self-giving that we all immediately and eternally need. As the individuals, even so the nations must play this inevitable, nourishing and fulfilling role. Our Secretary-General is all praise for those who cheerfully give and soulfully receive:

"The men and women serving in the peace-keeping forces, and the troop-contributing countries that provide them, have set a course for the future, a course full of promise and exemplifying a vision and courage far out of the ordinary."

Indispensability of the United Nations

The genuine self-giving of the United Nations has already become a tangible reality in the inner world. Now slowly and steadily it is being manifested in the outer world. Before long there shall come a time when the entire humanity will fully realise the indispensable peace-contribution that the United Nations has been making right from its very birth. No awakened human being will fail to subscribe to the Secretary-General's self-evident utterance:

"All supporters of the United Nations have been greatly encouraged by the fact that many of the confrontations and conflicts in the world are giving way to dialogue. Their belief in the indispensability of the Organisation has been fully justified. Multilateral efforts towards peace as stimulated, directed or channelled by the United Nations have been seen to bring results."

Fulfilling the United Nations mission

We are not obliged to see eye-to-eye with those cynics who propagate the faulty and absurd idea that the United Nations has not fulfilled its promises. Let us soulfully and powerfully sing in unison with those who feel that the United Nations has been given neither the well-deserved authority nor the adequate opportunity to reveal and manifest its world-embracing, world-illumining and world-fulfilling vision. The Pilot of the U.N. boat tells the world:

"If the United Nations is subject to so many legal, political and practical constraints when it wishes to intervene in current conflicts, can it really fulfil its primary mission of maintaining peace? I will answer that, in the context in which it has to operate, it can contribute, and it does contribute to a considerable extent to a reduction of violence and the promotion of peace. It works to prevent conflicts by attacking their underlying causes. It tries to bring them before the international community as soon as they begin to emerge. It helps, in short, to contain them and settle them by peaceful means."

Nations must work together

United we must see the reality. United we must feel the reality. United we must grow into the reality. There is no other way-none. Little brothers and big brothers in strong harmony and perfect peace must live. If not, danger shall threaten and devour the world. The divine words of the Secretary-General are indeed of supreme value:

"It is in the equal interest of all nations, large or small, to work towards a world where nations, like individuals, will operate within a complete, coherent and viable system of law, impartially administered and enforced. Any movement away from this goal holds equal danger for all."

The United Nations and the future

Division and separation will not and cannot appease the inner hunger of the comity of nations. It is the unity in multiplicity that can and will fulfil this hunger. And our Secretary-General tells us that the hour has struck and the world is ready for a new truth-the truth of world-union:

"The main issues of the time we are about to enter are multilateral in their essence. They can only be tackled and solved by nations working together. And that collective action will inevitably require international organisations. Thus, the United Nations fits the future. Its Members know they need it. They will certainly use it."

The necessity of the United Nations

The Secretary-General reminds us that more than ever before, the lovers of world-peace cannot hope to achieve a oneness-life in a oneness-world without the supreme assistance of the world-body:

"Assuming rationality on the part of the world's political leadership and also assuming that international anarchy is not to be countenanced and a nuclear disaster to be avoided, it is hard to see how nations can manage the vast areas of their joint concern except through the world-Organisation."

An instrument of peace

The United Nations as a divine instrument is undoubtedly the embodiment of God's Dream. And we must serve this world-organisation devotedly and untiringly in order to transform this dream into reality. Let us be illumined by the supreme message of the great instrument of the United Nations:

"We will not be misreading the historical process we are going through if we believe that what previously happened domestically is now happening on the global plane. The United Nations provides nations with an instrument designed precisely to bring about the accommodation of legitimate national interests in the wider international interest. But this demands a sense of purpose, a clear idea of the direction that needs to be given to international affairs and the stamina to pursue that course."

To search for peace is an honour

To search for peace is a supreme honour. By no manner of means is it abject humiliation. High idealism the United Nations has within. Vast reality it will reveal without. Indeed, this is the glorious vision of the Secretary-General:

"The United Nations has advantages which are, first, its permanence, all the more necessary because wars are more protracted, second, its neutrality, which it must jealously preserve, and lastly its idealism, which makes the search for peace an honour and not a humiliation."

The door to peace

Satisfaction we want? Then we needs must have peace. To achieve this peace, the Secretary-General invites the world-citizens to cheerfully and lovingly proceed with a oneness-heart:

"Let us work together for a peace of harmony, of justice, of human welfare and of human rights that expresses the best we know and feel from all our cultures. The door to that peace is open wide-let us walk through it together."

Part II — Songs dedicated to the Secretary-General

U.N. Pilot

O U.N. Pilot, Javier Perez de Cuellar!
Yours is the silver journey
To the Oneness-Fulness-Harbour.
Calmness-mind, softness-heart,
Boldness-life and brightness-soul.
Wisdom within, wisdom without:
A splendid role!

We take the United Nations seriously when we desperately need it. I would urge that we also seriously consider the practical ways in which it should develop its capacity and be used as an essential institution in a stormy, uncertain world.

— Javier Perez de Cuellar

A chronology of goodwill: meetings and correspondence with the Secretaries-General

/Sri Chinmoy offers U Thant a bouquet of flowers at a meeting with the Secretary-General on 29 February 1972, when U Thant said: "Whoever speaks to me about you is all appreciation and admiration, and I personally feel that you have been doing a most significant task for the United Nations."/

/At a meeting on 16 July 1976, Secretary-General Waldheim presents Sri Chinmoy with a silver medallion in appreciation of his work at the United Nations. The two met again on 7 March 1977 and on 24 October 1978. During their first meeting Mr. Waldheim remarked: "You are praying for peace. I know what you are doing for us. I know it. I can feel it."/

Secretary-General Perez de Cuellar meditates with Sri Chinmoy on 13 January 1983, remarking later in the meeting: "I am indeed touched by your sincere expression of support for my efforts in the cause of peace and international understanding.

/"In your meditation you see beyond the superficial distinctions of race, sex, language or religion, as the Charter encourages us to do. You concentrate on the truths and ideals which unite all mankind: the longing for peace, the need for compassion, the search for tolerance and understanding among men women of all nations./

/"We must never forget that all our activities are aimed at fulfilling the lofty principles of the Charter. We must not lose sight of these objectives despite the frequent difficulties we encounter along the way. In recalling the fundamental goals which inspire our work, you are helping to re-affirm our commitment to the Organisation and its purposes."/

  1. PDC 29. During the nearly twenty years that Sri Chinmoy and the Peace Meditation group have been offering programmes at United Nations headquarters, many messages of goodwill and mutual appreciation have been exchanged with the United Nations Secretaries-General and their office. The following selection of quotations and correspondence illustrates this relationship founded on mutual respect for service to the cause of peace.

From: Sri Chinmoy, Perez de Cuellar: Immortality's Rainbow-Peace - , Agni Press, 1989
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