Japan: “A stress-free and violence-free society is the birthright of every individual. We will create waves of happiness in Japan,” said Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, renowned Indian spiritual leader and founder of The Art of Living, on his arrival in Japan on April 11, 2012.
Gurudev landed in Japan amidst the tension of the North Korean rocket launch. This visit is a part of his world tour aimed at spreading the message of a stress-free, violence-free society.
Lauding the efforts of The Art of Living and Gurudev for its mission to create ‘Waves of Happiness’, Mr Yoshihiko Noda, Prime Minister of Japan, who met with the spiritual leader said, “I am very happy that Gurudev visited the epicenter of the tsunami and met with the displaced victims. I appreciate the participation of The Art of Living in Japan where the suicide rates are becoming very high.”
He also mentioned that apart from the economical and political relations, spirituality has its vital role to play. “Since this year is marking the 60th anniversary of Japan-India diplomatic relationships, Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar's visit to Japan adds more value,” he added.
Mr Hiroshi Yamada, leader of the ‘Spirit of Japan’ party and former Mayor of Suginami city organized a civic reception for Gurudev. This was attended by the former Prime Minister of Japan Mr Abe Shinzo; Mr Hiranuma Takeo, Minister of Parliament; Mr Sonoda Hiroyuki, Minister of Parliament; Mr Nagashima Akihisa, Minister of Parliament; Governor of Saitama prefecture Mr Ueda Kiyoshi; Chairman of Osaka prefecture assembly, Mr Asada Hiroshi; former Mayor of Yokohama Mr Nakada Hiroshi; Mr Kasai Noriyuki, Chairman, Central Japan Railways Corporation. Also present were many parliament members, political leaders and corporate heads.
On his three-day tour, Gurudev also addressed the students of Tokai University. His call to create a stress-free and violence-free society struck a chord with one and all.
Over the years, The Art of Living has been conducting its stress-elimination programs. In 2011, when Japan was devastated by the deadly tsunami, the organization moved swiftly to help the affected people cope with their mental anguish. A series of trauma relief workshops were conducted for the refugees. These workshops taught simple yoga asanas, breathing technique and meditation allowing the victims to experience a sense of calm and peace.