Gurudev's initiatives helped end Colombia's

53-year old

violent conflict that had claimed
200,000 lives

Over

50,000

Iraqi citizens benefitted through various initiatives

More than

20,000

war-affected Syrians are being provided trauma-relief and resilience workshops

Overview

“Peace is not just an absence of conflict; it is a positive phenomenon inside of us. When our mind is quiet, our intellect becomes sharper, our emotions become positive and lighter, and our behavior becomes much more palatable. These are the effects of finding inner peace, and inner peace is the key to world peace.”

- Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar

PEACE by PEACE

Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar has, both, personally and through thousands of volunteers, fostered peace by way of dialogue and strategic initiatives that engage multiple levels of government, business, and humanitarian organizations.

The Art of Living has initiated conflict resolution and trauma-relief programs in many countries, including Afghanistan, Brazil, Cameroon, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Israel-Palestine, Kenya, Kosovo, Lebanon, Mauritius, Morocco, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and the United States of America.

Strategy

A multi-pronged strategy is followed in such programs, typically including a combination of these components:

  • Necessities: Immediate help is made available based on the needs, for example, food, shelter, and medicines
  • Inner peace: Powerful trauma-relieving interventions to bring peace to disturbed minds and elevate the energy for positive action
  • Multi-group dialogue: All factions are brought to the table for constructive conversations with The Art of Living playing a facilitative role
  • Community building: Local leaders and change agents are inspired and developed to help people support each other in the process of healing
  • Creation of platforms: Conferences, large think-tanks, and external support is garnered through creating awareness of the situation

Impact

A few service project highlights

Colombian peace process gets a big boost

There was a historic change of heart and strategy that came to pass in Cuba when Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar met with the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia / Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia) leaders. When the 52-year-old war formally ended with the signing of the peace agreement between the FARC and the Colombian government in September 2016, Gurudev was invited by the President Juan Manuel Santos and FARC to the ceremony.   

Trauma relief workshops for militants  

Trauma-relief workshops conducted for hundreds of militants, including ULFA militants from Assam, Manipuri militants, Kashmiri terrorists, and Maoist rebels. Gurudev has also facilitated dialogues in various conflicts like the Assam riots (2012), Amarnath land dispute (2008),

Gujjar protests (2008), and as far back as the Naxal uprisings of 2001.

Rebuilding Iraq

Since September 2003, The Art of Living has contributed to rebuilding war-torn Iraq. The Iraq peace initiative has a two-pronged mission: providing stress relief techniques to overcome stress and help strengthen the community through service initiatives.

Breaking the logjam in North East India

Gurudev has been actively working in the North East of India to sort the long history of conflict and insurgency in the region. His efforts played a big hand in the recent homecoming of 68 militants in Manipur. The Art of Living has carried out several programs to help former militants to reintegrate with the mainstream.

Ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka: Erasing the trauma of a prolonged civil war

During this conflict, The Art of Living volunteers organized relief efforts for victims. In addition to receiving material supplies, thousands of refugees and victims benefited from trauma relief workshops conducted in Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu.

Our work in other areas

Alleviating pain in conflict areas

  • Ossetia (Aug 2008)
  • Ivory Coast and Cameroon (2007)
  • Iraq (Sept 2003)
  • The war between Lebanon and Israel (July 2006)
  • Israel (2004)
  • Kosovo (2002)
  • Afghanistan (Feb 2002 – June 2006)

Relieving trauma post-terror attacks

  • Baltimore riots (2015)
  • Ferguson riots (2014)
  • Trauma relief after the 26/11 attack in Mumbai (2008)
  • Virginia Tech campus shootings, USA (April 2007)
  • 9/11 terror attacks, USA (Sept 2001)
  • Suburban railway bomb blasts, Mumbai, India (July 2006)
  • London subway blast, United Kingdom (July 2005)
  • The terrorist attack, Madrid, Spain (March 2004)
  • School Hostage Crisis, Beslan, Russia (Sept 2004)
  • Communal riots, Gujarat, India (2002)

Contact Us

India office

Phone: +91 80 67612300​
Fax :+91 80 2843 2833
Email: secretariat@artofliving.org 
Address: Office of Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, The Art of Living International Center, 21st KM, Kanakapura Road, Udaypura, Bangalore South, Karnataka - 560082, India

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A multi-faceted approach to social initiatives has saved many lives, lit many smiles, and helped communities experience progress. Every piece of service work is created with dedicated analysis, thoughtful care - keeping humaneness in the forefront. Progressive change and sustainable impact happen when the affected are supported at every step of their journey. Walk with us as we walk with others. And together let’s build hope for every member of our global family.

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