Highlighting Sri Chinmoy's connections with Taupō including a seventeen day visit in 2002.
1993: Taupō Becomes A Sri Chinmoy Peace Town
On Tuesday July 20 in 1993, Taupō was inaugurated as a Sri Chinmoy Peace Town during a visit by the Sri Chinmoy Oneness-Home Peace Run as it passed through the area. As a designated Sri Chinmoy Peace Town, Taupō became part of a programme called the Sri Chinmoy Peace-Blossoms – an international garland of nations, capitals, cities, towns, states, borders, natural wonders and man-made structures – that serve to remind us that peace is as much a state of inner awareness and aspiration as it is an absense of struggle, conflict and war. In this way, the Peace-Blossoms initiative offers an opportunity for different communities to share in mankind's common quest for peace.
2002: Sri Chinmoy Visits Taupō
Sri Chinmoy arrived in Taupō on Sunday December 01, 2002, during a six week visit to New Zealand. The Master remained in Taupō for seventeen days staying at the Wairakei Resort with an international group of his meditation students before heading to Christchurch for three weeks via Wellington. While he was in Taupō Sri Chinmoy offered a Peace Concert at the Great Lake Centre and also held two Lifting Up the World with a Oneness-Heart sessions – a unique encouragement programme that recognises individuals from all walks of life who, by excelling in their respective fields of endeavour, have inspired and uplifted humanity.
"I am trying with my capacity to encourage and inspire people in various walks of life who have inspired others in sports, literature, science or politics, or in their own personal lives. I lift them up to show my appreciation for their achievements."
Utilising a specially constructed platform, Sri Chinmoy literally lifts the honourees overhead from a seated position below the platform with one arm before presenting them with a special Lifting Up the World Medallion. Sixty-six people were lifted during two Lifting Up the World with a Oneness-Heart sessions in Taupō and the honourees including Colin Meads and his wife Verna, and the Mayor of Taupō Clayton Stent.
"Thank you for the honour, and to Sri Chinmoy, I just want to say what an honour it is for the wife and me to be here. Having read of your worldwide work for peace throughout the world, it gives me great honour to think that I was chosen as a sportsman in New Zealand, and that I can have this great honour of being here today and being uplifted.
"To you all, I just want to say what marvellous work this man does. And what sport can do for people throughout the world is marvellous also. While he is spreading the message throughout the world, we here in New Zealand, in our own little world, must take on board his efforts and his achievements that he’s done over the many, many, many years. And if sport can play some little part in helping him achieve that, then I’m pleased to be part of the sport.
"To you all, just thanks for the occasion, and to Sri Chinmoy, for the invitation to be here and the honour that has been bestowed upon me, when you think of the great Nelson Mandela and the work that he’s done. I had the privilege of meeting him some ten or eleven years ago and that was one great occasion for me.
I also heard that you’d lifted Precious McKenzie and other great people like him. I also think Precious McKenzie should be sitting where you are and lift you up, because if anyone deserves to be lifted, this great man does! The effort that he’s made throughout the world is tremendous.
"To you all once again, thank you very much."
Song for Colin Meads
Sri Chinmoy also wrote a song in honour of Colin Meads' contribution to the world and to the sport of rugby. The song was performed powerfully by Sri Chinmoy's students on the day that he was lifted and these are the lyrics.
I Salute you, I salute you
You are from the world of infinitude,
In the rugby world thunder-power-free
New Zealand’s pride colossal
Her loudest Victory-Bell
Lifting Lambs And Cows
Having for a number of years called New Zealand 'The Land of The Lambs', Sri Chinmoy also lifted one thousand lambs in six sessions during his time in the North Island. The first of these lifting sessions took place near Hamilton where the Master stayed for five days prior to coming to Taupō. The second session was near Te Kuiti while in transit from Hamilton to Taupō. The remaining four lamb lifting sessions took place around the Taupō region. After the first session of lifting near Hamilton, a reported asked Sri Chinmoy why he had decided to lift one thousand lambs.
"Why am I doing this? I have a deep love for lambs. The saviour Christ had a very special affection, love and fondness for lambs and I also have a very special inner feeling for lambs. We all need to be God's lamb-children. My goal is to inspire people [and] by lifting up one thousand lambs I feel God has given me a golden opportunity to be of service to Him and to inspire others to fulfil their own goals."
Half way through the rigorous lamb lifting project, Sri Chinmoy became inspired to lift one hundred milking cows. This project was quickly organised and took place over three sessions near Taupō at the Parkwood Jersey farm that belonged at the time to Henry and Karen Van Der Hulst.
We are all truly unlimited,
If we only dare to try
And have faith.