The President of India, Smt Droupadi Murmu inaugurated the Divine Retreat Centre of Brahma Kumaris at Haridamada village near Bhubaneswar, Odisha today (July 8, 2024). She also launched a national campaign ‘Lifestyle for Sustainability’ of Brahma Kumaris.

Speaking on the occasion, the President said that Mother Nature is full of bounties. Forests, mountains, rivers, lakes, seas, rain, air - all are essential for the survival of living beings. But humans should remember that abundance in nature is for their needs, not for their greed. Human beings are exploiting nature for their indulgence and by doing this, are becoming victims of nature's wrath. She stated that establishing harmony with nature and living nature-friendly life is the need of the hour.

The President said that Indian culture has always emphasized a lifestyle compatible with nature. In our philosophy, the earth has been called mother and the sky has been called father. The river has also been given the title of mother. Water has been called life. We worship rain as Lord Indra and the ocean as Lord Varuna. In our stories, mountains and trees move and animals even talk to each other. This means that nature is not inert, it also has the power of consciousness within it. All these are beautiful thoughts of Indian philosophers for the protection of nature.

The President said that climate change, global warming, and uncertainty of weather are big challenges that the world facing today. Natural disasters like floods, landslides, avalanches, earthquakes, forest fires, and tsunamis are no longer occasional. Now these have become frequent incidents.

The President said that small changes in our daily lives pave the way for big changes in society. We have to change our habits to ensure minimum use of natural resources. Often, drinking water gets wasted due to the taps being left open. Lights remain on even during the day. Similarly, be it at home or office, we do not pay attention to switching off the fans or lights. We have not been able to free ourselves from the habit of leaving some food on plates. She emphasised that it is not enough to just discuss nature-friendly lifestyle, we have to make it a part of our daily life. She urged everyone to make a habit of saving natural resources to conserve it.

The President appreciated all associated with the national campaign ‘Lifestyle for Sustainability. She said that it is a praiseworthy step in the direction of connecting people with nature. She stated that this campaign should not be limited to meetings, committees, or conferences. She urged all associated with the campaign to go to different parts of the country and make people aware, especially, the rural people about the environment.

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