Art of Living gears up to host its 30 year celebrations

Bangalore, Karnataka, India

Bangalore. June 21. 2011. The Art of living will celebrate its 30th anniversary in Berlin with the ‘World Culture Festival’ on the 2 and 3 July, 2011 where more than 70,000 people across 151 countries will congregate with an aim of ‘Celebrating diversity and enriching life’.

Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Spiritual leader, humanitarian and Founder, The Art of Living said, “Thirty years of The Art of Living - a milestone has been achieved. We are inspired to continue with even more enthusiasm and greater speed to realize the dream, where life becomes a celebration and the world will become one family. Millions of volunteers have worked with so much love and enthusiasm. They will continue inspiring millions more, in all the areas that we have not yet reached, and dry the tears that are still being shed. The World Culture Festival is a celebration of achievements and a vision to do even more good."

The festival is being held at Berlin’s Olympic stadium- the Olympiastadion. The reception committee of the festival is headed by Prof. Ruud Lubbers, Former Prime Minister of the Netherlands, co-founder of the Earth Charter Initiative.

The festival is being held at Berlin’s Olympic stadium- the Olympiastadion. The reception committee of the festival is headed by Prof. Ruud Lubbers, Former Prime Minister of the Netherlands, co-founder of the Earth Charter Initiative.

Some of the dignitaries who would be present at the festival include, Hon. Danny Davis, Congressman, US Congress, Hon. Mr. Jens Ackermann, Member of the Parliament, German Parliament. Hon. Mr. Jaber Mohammed Abbas, Deputy Minister for Culture, Iraq, H.E. Dr. Sayed Makhdoom Raheen, Minister of culture and Information, Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Mr. Anatoly Safonov, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Russia, H.E. Mr. Abul Kalam Azad, Hon. Minister of Culture & Information, Bangladesh, Prof. Vytautas Landsbergis, Former Prime Minister of Lithuania.

The World Culture Festival will host numerous dignitaries and ministers like Hon. Mr.Praful Patel, Minister of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises, Govt of India, Hon. Mr Subodh Kant Sahay, Minister for Tourism, Govt of India, Hon. Mr B S Yedyurappa, Chief Minister of Karnataka, India, Mr. Nitin Gadkari, President Bharatiya Janata Party, India.

Numerous other business leaders, academicians, NGO representatives, religious and spiritual leaders and peace ambassadors will be a part of the event. They will exchange their views on intercultural understanding, peace, unity and harmony in diversity.

The highlights of the festival will be:

  • A Grand Guitar Ensemble for Peace with 2,000 guitarists, 30 pianos, and a choir performance with 3,000 singers.
  • Four pavilions will showcase the cultural heritage of Africa, Asia-Pacific, The Americas and Europe, where countries will display their various cultures, local food, dance, music, poetry and literature.
  • The stadium will be transformed into Europe’s biggest participative Yoga Park where visitors can experience workshops, conferences and explore the effect of yoga on physical and mental health and inner peace.
  • A unique Yoga Museum will chart the evolution of Yoga from ancient sages to its global application in the 21st century and also illustrate the societal impact of Yoga in peace building and its application in humanitarian projects around the world
  • There will also be a unique presentation by yoga teachers and practitioners of various ages and yoga schools who will perform the musically choreographed Surya Namaskar (sun salutation).
  • Recitation of ancient Sanskrit chants with classical Indian ragas with western and eastern musical arrangements by Chandrika Tandon, Grammy Award Nominee.
  • Performance by Nadaswaram and Thavil Group, a concert by Tamil artists with classical Carnatic music.
  • Global cultural performances including Lotus dance from Japan, Aboriginal dance by Canada and Swiss, Austrian Alpine Horns
  • Concert by Outlandish, a multi-award winning hip-hop group based in Denmark.
  • The pavilions will also host the 5th International Women’s Conference and a Photography Exhibition on the work and service projects of the Art of Living Foundation.
  • 70,000 people from 151 countries are expected to meditate together for peace at the stadium in the presence of Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

The Berlin Celebrations will see spectacular global cultural performances including classical music from India and America, folk dances from Russia and Bulgaria, contemporary music from Malta, Shaolin Monks from China, traditional flutes from Turkey, and a variety of performances from Germany. Renowned Maltese singer Ira Losco will perform during the festival.

As a prelude to the festivities, ‘Health and Happiness’ workshops, based on the 3 pillars of yoga, pranayama and meditation, are being offered throughout Germany since mid-may.

The Art of Living was founded by Gurudev 30 years ago with a vision to create a stress- free and non-violent world. The organization serves people through projects that empower the individual, provide freedom from trauma and stress in crisis areas, and rehabilitates victims of violence and prison inmates. It teaches yoga and meditation, emphasizing on using the breath to relax and manage stress. A key component is the Sudarshan Kriya, a health-promoting breathing technique. The organization also holds special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN), and he is active in numerous other international bodies and committees in the areas of health, education and sustainable development.

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