Thursday, September 12, 2013

The Inner Path- Festival celebrating Buddhism ended with ‘Dharma Bums’ splendid performance

The second Inner Path festival to celebrate Buddhism by NETPAC was concluded on Sept 10 with great spirit. The festival was promoted by renowned film critic Aruna Vasudev (Founder & Director The Inner Path), the pioneering president of the Network for Promotion of Asian Cinema and was a huge success.

The festival was held from 6 to 10 September in the capital’s Azad Bhavan (Indian Council of Cultural Relations). The inauguration was done by External affairs Minister, Mr. Salman Kurshid; who commended the efforts of Aruna Vasudev and NETPAC for their initiative in spreading awareness about Buddhism. He said, “Buddhism has given spirituality to this world and we are the birth place of this remarkable way of life, we should consider ourselves blessed for giving this world this wonderful way of life.” The opening also saw a performance by The American Band, ‘Dharma Bums’ who enthralled the audience with their spiritual performance with Buddhism themed songs.
The festival was beyond exhibitions, concerts and film shows. There were daily Discourses by eminent Buddhist teachers and scholars followed by discussions. The speakers were his Eminence the 12th Kenting Tai Situpa, Prof. Askar Chingizovich Akmatov from Kyrgyzstan; Dhammananda Bhikkhuni from Thailand; and Dr. Rabindra Panth, the Director of the Nav Nalanda University, Bihar.
The four days event included film screenings by eminent and new directors on the theme of Buddhism, also on display were art works and photographs by renowned photographers like Jaime Leon Ros, Nicholas Vreeland, Shefali Munjal & Sculptures by Shakti Maira.
During the course of the day panel discussions were held after the movie screening which proved to be very insightful for the audience present there. Some of the movies which were really appreciated by the audience were : ‘An essence of Wind’ by Winaldo Artaraya Swastia of Indonesia, ‘Samsara’ by Pan Nalin, ‘Karma’ by Tsering Rhitar Sherpa , ‘Spring , Summer Fall, Winter…and Spring’ by Kim Ki-Duk of South Korea.
The highlight of the screenings was the last film ‘Impermanence’ by National Award winning Director Goutam Ghose, who was also present at the festival and attended the discourses and screenings. The film was about the journey of Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet. He said, “I enjoy making all kinds of films and with real people it’s much more challenging.” He also added, “We have to learn from ancient people like Buddha, Guru Nanak what sustainable living is.”
The festival also included discourses on various issues related to Buddhism. One of the discussions was headed by Dhammananda Bhikkhuni, Asso. Prof. Dr. Chatsumarn Kabil Singh who has been ordained and has successfully created an open world for women in her temple in Thailand. She said that she would be coming back to India in November for the young Bhikkunis of Nagpur. The discussion was insightful and threw light on various aspects of Buddhism and ended on a high note of more power for women.
The concluding lecture was by Dr. Ravindra Panth. The lecture began with 10 minutes of Aana Paana i.e., observing our own respiration, this literally helped soothe the minds and relax. Dr. Panth also talked about practicing Buddhism and not reacting to a situation and learning to cope up with it. “One should eradicate more and accumulate less”, he said.

After the event, Aruna Vasudev thanked everyone for their support for making the festival a huge success.