FSU International Peace Day
Honoring the Sandhir Family and Ghandi
On Friday, Sept. 22, the Frostburg Foundation, in partnership with The Sandhir Foundation, held a dedication for “Tree of Peace and Humanity.” The dedication took place in between the Gira Center and the Compton Science Center at Frostburg State University. The Sandhir family was in attendance, as they were there to help celebrate the life and work of Mahatma Ghandi. The Sandhir family has been a part of the community for years and have continually donated to the Frostburg campus; their donations have helped to give scholarships, helping many students further their academic dreams.
Also taking place that same day, Frostburg State University in collaboration with Allegany College of Maryland, recognized one of the most influential leaders in peace, Mahatma Ghandi, through “Planting Seeds of Peace.” The guest speaker was Srimati Karuna, who has been dedicated to the Mahatma Ghandi Memorial Foundation since 1998. Karuna received her B.A. in International Studies from American University in Washington, D.C., and became the director of the Ghandi Memorial Center in 2006. She continues to be devoted to his ideals and life message, and her speech focused on what Ghandi had done in his lifetime – the work that he did to show non-violence and the strength that comes with standing one’s ground. Karuna spoke well about the life of Ghandi, the hardships he endured, his journeys throughout the world, and what he meant to the people of India.
While speaking, the names of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Albert Einstein were mentioned as those that Ghandi managed to influence. Ghandi’s teachings reached people of all nationalities and backgrounds; Albert Einstein, of the greatest minds, and Dr. King, a great leader for Civil Rights, both saw Mahatma Ghandi as a great man who’s teachings should be followed.
Karuna felt that the event was “very humbling, because there is such a wealth of knowledge and experience to learn from Mahatma Ghandi’s experiments with truth, with his life actions and pursuits”. People “knew just about everything about him because he made his life so readily available to everyone. Sometimes today we hear and see individuals who perhaps take on great responsibilities, but we don’t really know the fullness of their life.”
The event was done to bring about the thoughts of peace and what individuals could do to make not only their own lives better, but the lives of those around them better as well. In our society today, we are at a very fragile state where hate and demonization are being thrown around in every direction. People are scared. After leaving this event and hearing about what Ghandi did throughout his life and what he wanted to convey, his influence can be seen from those who have taken stands against the hate. Ghandi was a great influence, and he continues to impact those who want to see change and make the world better for everyone.
“I am but a poor struggling soul yearning to be wholly good, wholly truthful, and wholly non-violent in thought, word, and deed; but ever failing to reach the ideal which I know to be true. It is a painful climb but the pain of it is a positive pleasure to me. Each step upwards makes me feel stronger fit for the next.” – Ghandi