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Dr Acharya Lokesh Muni : Social Reformer, Peace Ambassador and a HOPE to the World

Dr Acharya Lokesh Muni : Social Reformer, Peace Ambassador and a HOPE to the World

Acharya Lokesh Muni is a jain saint. He represents the shwetambar tradition of Jain Religion. His life was moulded by his will and wish to bring more peace and harmony by from the real essence of Anekantvada. As a jain monk he initiated his ascetic life in the age of 22 years and strictly followed the jain principles and norms. He travelled 20,000 kilometres by foot and reach thousand of places to educate common man about jain religion and its basic principles of non violence and non attachments. 

Dr Acharya Lokesh Muni efforts to diffuse friction and tension in society is widely appreciated by the Indian government and various national and International organisations. In last ten years, he was invited and initiated many peace efforts to establish love and harmony. It was 2007 when he was key to bring truce between Akal Taqt of Sikh Religion and Dera Saccha Sauda (DSS) of Gurmeet Ram Rahim. It was a boiling point when DSS Head was flouted many basic tenets of Sikhism and become a negative figure by doing many acts against sikh beliefs. The indian government and punjab government was very anxious and rampant protest and clashes were common by both sides. In this volatile situation an Interfaithdelegation, led by Acharya Dr Lokesh Muni visited he head quarters of DSS and spend a whole day to convince Gurmeet Ram Rahim to apologise on paper. It is said, that when ego clashes happens, only mature understanding can bring some balance. Acharyaji has persuaded by a popular saying after many hours of negotiation, “Kshama Veerasaya Bhusanam”. Later DSS Chief apologised and gave a letter to Akal Taqt. The then Home Minister of India Mr Shivraj Patil was continuous in touch with Acharyaji and put his all hope to salvage the situation. The Interfaith delegation literally lose the hope by the adamant behaviour of the parties, but due to practical knowledge and a sound experience Acharyaji turn the situation and the opportunity in a win win situation.

This one incident has boost his morale and later Indian Government felicitated him with National Communal Harmony Award on 2010. The award was given by Vice President Hamid Ansari and Former Prime Minister of India Dr Manmohan Singh in New Delhi.

It was 1999, when Acharyaji was only travel by foot and criss-crossed the country to reach masses to give them the message of non violence and non attachement. A place in Gujarat calls for his attention. The city of Bardoli near Surat was on fire every year. This is the same city when Sardar Ballabbhai Patel started a farmer protest here and anointed by the name of Sardar by the women, after the british government kneel down. The city was always faced tension during the time of Ganesh Chaturthi procession. Hindu and Muslim community become sensitive and clashes are common from many years. In that situation, Acharya Dr Lokesh Muni has decided to visit the place in 1999 by foot. He traveled thousand mile to reach the place and spend few days there. In the meetings with Hindu and Muslim leaders, he emphasise the value of bonding and harmony for social development and quote some incidents which largely effects the future of community. It was amazing that after 1999, not a single clash or incident was reported till date near ganesh chaturthi procession. It was a moment of pride for Acharyaji life and principles.

In 2013, Acharyaji was in London for a series of Interfaith programmes. He was invited by many organisations. In India, a city was clamoured with violence after riots happened on Muzzafarnagar, Uttar Pradesh. Acharyaji decided to pack his bags and return to the country and visit the city to meet the victims and persuade the perpetrators to become more humble and human. He called few other interfaithleaders, including the Cheif Imam of India and returned to reach the ground zero. It was mayhem and disturbed to see muslim brothers and sisters shifted to camps for security reasons. Acharyaji met hundreds of families and later with other communities. His visit has created a hope as he was with muslim, hindu and sikh leaders. Later media was so positive in reporting and governments praised the efforts of Acharyaji.

In 2014, Gujjhar reservation protest in north India shackled the normal life activities. Trains are halted, buses and public transport was targeted by the aggressive protestors. A news item disturbed his peace. Due to the agitation, some dead bodies are lying on railway tracks from last two weeks and no one dare to go there. Acharyaji decided to reach the place with local administration and clear the bodies and handover to the families and clear the railway track for smooth travel of trains. The situation was so tense and no one has the control to think about visiting the place. He accompanied with few interfaith leaders reached out to the head of the gujjars and convinced them on the logic of humanity. It was a real breathtaking moment when they visited the tracks and clear the corpses.

Migration was considered a social and economical problem in India. But when it happens on the name of religion, it is a big issue for faith leaders. A city of Western Uttar Pradesh, Kairana become famous overnight when the local member of parliament come up with a list of migratory hindu families. Acharyaji planned a visit with muslim and hindu faith leaders to understand the reality and address both community for peace. He traveled the whole city, by lanes and corners to meet and talk every section of the society. Later they all addressed a muslim gathering in a hindu temple hall! The impact of this visit was seen from the next day. Media comes up with reports of non migration and governments agencies filed reports of peace and harmony.

Its a surprise for everyone that how Acharyaji has made so strong relations with other religions. He was invited by Ajmer Sharif regularly to address a large masses of muslims, he was actively part of 350th anniversary celebration of Guru Gobind Singhji in Patna and Delhi. He has done thousands of interfaith programme with Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Bahai, Jews and every religion and sects. This leads him to many award and felicitations from time to time. In 2014 he was awarded as Ambassador of Peace from Universal Peace Federation of Seoul. Gulzarilal Nanda National Moral Award by H.E. Former President of India Pratibha Patil in 2006 and Bharat Gaurav Award in United Nations Head Quarters in 2017.

Jainism and its practice through communication, integrating and mingling with other faiths and sections of the society make his so popular. He was keen to take this forward. In 2016 the King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue(KAICIID) approached him to become an Advisory Council member. It was a pride and honour as Jain Religion was not not he board of KAICIID. It was the seventh religion KAICIID added due to the present of Jain Relgion and its engagements through Acharyajji.

Acharya Dr. Lokesh Muni is a social reformer, versatile thinker, writer and poet. For the last 30 years, he has been continuously making efforts for building National character, development of human values and establishing non- violene, peace and mutual co-operation in the society. He was born on April 17th 1961. After completing his formal education he deeply studied Jain, Buddhist, Vedic and other Indian and foreign thoughts (Philosophies). He is well read in Prakrit, Sanskrit, Hindi, English, Gujrati, Kannarese and many other languages. He as award Honorary Doctorate by Indian Board of Alternative Medicine. Acharya Dr. Lokesh is a writer, he has written more than dozen books in prose and poetry. His literature is very famous due to his new approach and solution to current problems. In his writing Dr. Lokesh has not only raised the problems but also presented lasting solution to them. ‘The Unborn Curse’ is novel discarding abortion of female child. It was released in Hindi by Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam, the President of India and it gained popularity to a great extent. The first copy of the English version was releases by Smt. Sonia Gandhi, the president of the Congress. The introduction of this book was written by Shri Shivraj Patil, Home Minister of India Shri L.K.Advani former Deputy Prime Minister of India had penned down his comments. His writing is popular both in India and Abroad. The literature of Acharya Dr. Lokesh has been translated and published in many language including Hindi, English, Gujarati, Tamil, Bengali, Kannares and German etc.

In the year 2001, Bill Clinton President of USA was deeply impressed with the fundamental thoughts of Acharya Dr. Lokesh and invited him to visit America. During his first visit to USA in March 2007, Acharya Dr. Lokesh discussed Peace Education and training of non-violence in the Senate, where members of both the political parties namely Republican and Democrats participated. In September 2008, he addressed Milpitas Assembly of California. Mayor Hoze Astawish honored him with ‘Keys of Milpitas City’ for his distinguished contribution in the field of non- violence, peace and mutual co-operation. In the All –Religion Foot travel from Tankara in Gujarat to Amritsar in Punjab passing through five States for creating an awakening among the public against abortion of female child, he was leading the participants of Jain faith successfully leading the movement against abortion of female child and intoxicants in various states. Acharya Dr. Lokesh started National Movement against this evil on February 20th, 2008 and it was inaugurated by Dr. Hamid Ansari, Vice President of India.

The entire life of Acharya Dr. Lokesh is full of immense contribution towards re-establishing human values and National trust. He was dedicated his entire life for the uplift of humanity, welfare of human being, establishing human integration and mutual brotherhood. He is making various experimental in order to strengthen National Unity and is continuously moving ahead in this direction. The entire community is enjoying the benefits of his experiments and research.

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