Meditation and Prayer Gathering “We Are Together!”


Pray for Peace and Compassion on Martin Luther King Jr.’s Birthday

Yurie Takeuchi

January 17, 2017

Over a hundred community people, led by the Buddhist leaders and interfaith leaders were gathered at Gandhi’s statue, Union Square Park in Manhattan, NY, on January 16, 2017.

Amidst an increase in violence, religious and racial bias, and hate in American society, Buddhist Council of New York has decided to have gathering to express the message of compassion and peace on the special day of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who led his human rights movement with a message of non-violence. Non-violence was demonstrated by Mahatma Gandhi, and has been practiced in Buddhist traditions.

“It is important to keep in our mind the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, namely non-violence, action of peace and compassion,” said, Rev. Dr. T. Kenjitsu Nakagaki, President of the Buddhist Council of New York in his welcome address.

The event, Meditation and Prayer Gathering “We Are Together!” was organized by the Buddhist Council of New York (BCNY). BCNY is an association of Buddhist Temples and organizations whose mission is to foster dialogue, cooperation and unity within the Buddhist community in the New York City area.

The gathering began with the warm Opening Invocation by Ven. Dharma King, founder of the International Mongolian and Tibetan Buddhist Center. It was followed by a Dharma speech by Roshi Pat Enkyo O’Hara, Abbot of Village Zendo.

“Dr. King is a true Bodhisattva!” said Roshi Enkyo. Bodhisattva, in Mahayana Buddhist tradition, refers a person who uses all their energy for the good of others.

Imam Muhammad Shahidullah, President of the Interfaith Center of U.S.A, offered Muslim prayer and said, “Although Trump’s policies have put much pressure on the Muslim community, I am optimistic because, the Muslim Community is joining and working together with our brothers and sisters in the African American community, Latino community, the Jewish Community, and today with their Buddhist friends to fight back against those policies.”

Later, Pastor Frank Haye, a composer, conductor and producer, and the Brooklyn Interdenominational Choir, a group encouraging members to celebrate diverse cultures, sang two songs for Love and Peace.

Detective Mohamed Amen represented NYPD Community Affairs Bureau, shared his message.

The BCNY welcomed Paola Ruiz, the Borough Director for Manhattan, who brought a message from Mayor de Blasio:

“I commend the Council and everyone gathered for their efforts to celebrate Dr. King’s life and legacy as we work together to forge a brighter, more inclusive and equitable future for all.”

Monks and nuns from various Buddhist traditions, including Theravada tradition such as Thailand and Sri Lanka, Mahayana tradition such as Chinese, Korean and Japanese, and Vajrayana tradition such as Tibet and Mongolia, gave meditation, prayer and blessings for peace and harmony.

As the ceremony came to a close, all participants regardless of their religious beliefs, age, race, or gender held hands with each other and joined their voices together in a prayer for unity.

The ceremony demonstrated how the idea of compassion is related to several different faiths such as, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism and how each religion can serve to unite individuals and bring peace to the world, conveying a strong message – although different in religious belief, we are one family when it comes to love and compassion.

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Meditate NYC on September 25, 2016

Meditate NYC2016 flyer

Buddhist Council to Host Free and Public Meditate NYC Event in Long Island City on September 25, 2016

A Day of Meditation to Cultivate the Mind of Peace and Compassion

The Buddhist Council of New York (BCNY), an association of diverse and international Buddhist temples and organizations, will present its annual Meditate NYC event for experienced practitioners and those brand new to meditation. Gathering inspiring speakers and well-known teachers from the New York area, the event will be held at Gantry Plaza State Park (Center Blvd and 49th Ave., Long Island City, NY 11101) from 2:30-6pm on Sunday, September 25, 2016.  Please bring your cushion, portable chair, or yoga mat for sitting.

Mediate NYC will be a part of the, sponsored by HaborLAB and BCNY, along with its partner the Interfaith Center of New York and the Global Movement for the Culture of Peace. The event also includes free paddling, and drawing lanterns from 2:30pm – 6:00pm, speakers and interfaith peace prayers at 6:30pm, followed by a sunset floating peace lantern launch on the East River starting at 7:30pm – 8:30pm.Peace Lantens Festival 2016 flyer 3

This event is taking place on a weekend dedicated to international peace corresponding with the United Nation’s International Day of Peace. Meditation is the way to bring peace in the mind and nurture the wholesome and healthy mind, and it is proved scientifically and practiced for thousands of years in various eastern culture and religions.

Various meditation and dharma teachers from various Buddhist traditions will participate, including Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Sri Lankan, Thai, Tibetan and American.

About the Buddhist Council of New York

The Buddhist Council of New York:, is an association of Buddhist temples and organizations whose mission is to foster dialogue, cooperation and unity within the Buddhist community in the New York City area. The Buddhist Council presents the annual Meditate NYC to promote beginning meditation, and the annual Buddhist Forum addressing current events of concern to Buddhists in the local area.


Contact: Rev. TK Nakagaki, President, The Buddhist Council of New York,




BCNY Vesak at Saint Peter’s Church


Vesak Flyer 2016Dear friends of the Buddhist Council of New York,

BCNY’s Vesak this year is something special.  The first Vesak Celebration by the BCNY happened at Saint Peter’s Church, on May 17, 1986, exactly 30 years ago.  So, we will celebrate the 30th Anniversary Vesk at the same Saint Peter’s Church on May 15, 2016, at 6:30pm – 9pm.  Please mark your calendar.  We now have an initial flyer for the event.  Please post and circulate the flyer at your center and temple.  We are looking for cultural performers from various Buddhist centers.  Please let us know if you are interested. We will send you more information soon.

Also we try to gather petition for Buddhist holiday Vesak to be recognized in our city and state. When you come to our Vesak Celebration this year, please bring petitions collected.  Please print attached petition sheet as many as you need.  Also there is on-line petition as well.  Please go to the page: