Stories by Sri Chinmoy's students and friends
Kanan Roberts • New York

Performing for the UN Secretary-General

Audio Interview

After a while, Guru began writing the avatar plays. He wrote plays about the Buddha, the Christ, Rama, and Krishna, and Chaitanya. Guru wanted to perform the Buddha play for Secretary-General U Thant of the United Nations.

Even before that, Guru was writing plays, and of course he wanted them performed. I would be the spiritual master in a play, and if another play came out, I was the spiritual master in that play also. I was typecast as the spiritual master, so I was given the part of the Buddha in the Buddha play.

Kanan plays the role of the Buddha

Tanima was the director of that play. She also played the part of the girl whose baby had died and the Buddha said to her, “Bring me mustard seeds from the house that has not been visited by death.” 

Hashi, of course, got the part of Sujata. When the Buddha was starving, she brought him some food. All of his ascetic disciples left him when they saw a woman, a girl, feeding him.

Sri Chinmoy garlands U Thant prior to the beginning of the play

I feel it is a great privilege to be able to participate in this spiritually rewarding experience, and for this I am most grateful to our esteemed teacher, Sri Chinmoy, for this innovative undertaking... I find that Sri Chinmoy has done a most remarkable job in presenting the play in simple, understandable language for the uninitiated. His stress on the basic characteristics of Buddhism, on compassion, love, renunciation, peace, should stimulate the thought of leaders of men and leaders of thought everywhere.

U Thant
25 May 1973

It was really one of the highlights of Guru’s manifestation to get the UN Secretary-General to come out on a rainy night to a farm for the Buddha play. Everyone had prepared for it. The carpenters had built the stage, and so many people were in the performance. That was a very great play.

We just want to watch God's Cosmic Play,
But God eagerly wants us
To participate in His Cosmic Play.

Sri Chinmoy 1


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