• World Harmony Run

    World's Largest Torch Relay
    World Harmony Run

  • 1,000,000 Participants

    Across 6 Continents
    1,000,000 Participants

  • Dreaming of a more harmonious world

    100 countries
    Dreaming of Harmony

  • Schools And Kids

    Make a Wish for Peace
    Schools And Kids

  • Sri Chinmoy: World Harmony Run Founder

    World Harmony Run Founder
    Sri Chinmoy

  • Carl Lewis: World Harmony Run Spokesman

    World Harmony Run Spokesman
    Carl Lewis

  • New York, USA

    New York

  • London, Great Britain

    Great Britain

  • Shakhovskaya, Russia


  • Around Australia

    15,000 kms, 100 days
    Around Australia

  • Around Ireland

    14 Days, 1500km
    Around Ireland

  • Wanaka, New Zealand

    New Zealand

  • Arjang, Norway


  • Rekjavik, Iceland


  • Beijing, China


  • Prague, Czech Republic

    Czech Republic

  • Belgrade, Serbia


  • Lake Biwa, Japan

    Lake Biwa

  • Kapsait, Ethiopia


  • Pangkor Island, Malaysia

    Pangkor Island

  • Bali, Indonesia


  • The All Blacks, New Zealand

    The All Blacks
    New Zealand

Japan 3 June: Start from Kamakura Buddha ...

During the Harmony Run, the life of the team staff is very simple. We run, hold the torch with children and play with them - when we are hungry we eat and then have a bath and fall fast asleep. The next day we get up, run and repeat the same process. This time it is only a short period of two days but even then the daily schedule is the same. We get really tired but it is a lot of fun!


Praying for world harmony in front of the Great Buddha

Today we held the starting ceremony at Kamakura Buddha Kotokuin Temple. The founder of the run, Sri Chinmoy, traveled around the world and visited all the main Buddhist temples but he liked the Great Buddha of Kamakura the most. He gave here concerts for world harmony and held an exhibition of his paintings. World Harmony Run has visited this beautiful place many times as well.


We received words of encouragement from lady Michiko Sato

At 8 o’clock in the morning, lady Michiko Sato of Kotokuin Temple came and encouraged the runners with heart-warming words. “We receive World Harmony Run every year but what touched me the most this time is that you will meet children. The UNESCO Constitution says: since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be constructed. So I think that it is an excellent thing to give children a chance to think about peace from an early age.”


Then, with the torch in hand she prayed in front of the Great Buddha for world peace and the safety of the runners. All the runners also folded their hands in front of the statue and now, under a bit cooler sky than yesterday, we took off!


The Great Buddha keeps an eye on our second day start

The first visit is the elementary school at Kamakura Women’s College. This school is enthusiastic about English language and other international education from elementary school level. 57 fifth graders were waiting for us in gym suits and caps since it was during their gymnastics lesson.


Our program in the schoolyard of Kamakura Women's College

When we prepared for performing the theme song with harmonium, tabla and flute, everybody became quite interested. When told “you can come closer to us”, the children surrounded us closely and impatiently waited for the performance. Their genuine interest is so nice! It would be great if this prompts children’s interest in music and world’s instruments.


Children showing interest in the instruments

Everyone held the torch in silence

After singing and dancing cheerfully, we formed a circle and with a wish for harmony, the torch was passed from hand to hand. With the torch at the front everyone started running around the large schoolyard and many children were so full of energy that they overtook the runner with the torch and sprinted on. Our team had a very nice time – many thanks to Mr. Sasaki, the teacher in charge!


Running together in the end was fun!

The second place to visit was a nursery school called Oranje. It is quite an unusual naming – taken from the German word for 'orange' and was chosen as the name of the nursery school because of thbe orange trees growing in the premises. A close concern for the children could be felt everywhere and the caretakers were a young and cheerful team.


Children from Oranje Nursery School

Somehow there was a misunderstanding when we settled on our arrival time so we ended up appearing 1 hour before the teachers had expected us but they kindly and quickly accommodated to this change of plan and we could immediately start our program with 30 eager children.


A skit "Is this harmony?"

Everyone held the torch earnestly

Everybody gave us a sweet good-bye

During this year’s Harmony Run, we visited four preschools and felt that the 4 to 5 year old children are really receptive. Unlike elementary school students, they might not understand the meaning of everything we tell them but they immediately catch it with their hearts. Maybe the children are those who know best that we all are one. The team comes to give a program on harmony but on the contrary we have many things to learn from the children. That is simply marvelous!


We had a good time at Oranje

The first destination after the lunch is a nursery school called Kobato Nursery. The director, Mrs. Iino and the manager, Mrs. Sasajima, were kind to us in many ways for which we are really grateful. Before the program started we were invited to the uppermost floor of their beautiful building (keeping it a secret from the children!) and were even served with drinks and sweets. Thank you very much!


Children from Kobato Nursery dancing happily to the theme song

Excellent Czech pronunciation!

The children of Kobato Nursery went a little ahead to a nearby park and waited for us. The arriving runners were greeted by cute voices. When it came to singing the theme song along with dancing, several children came up to the front and performed with us! Their cheerfulness was so great. This nursery school incorporates international education; an English teacher teaches a class called “Enjoy English”. No wonder many children had no problem saying the English version of “Harmony begins with me” when playing the four-language game.

こばとナーサリーの園児さん37名は一足先にそばの公園でわたしたちを待っていてくれます。ランナーが到着すると可愛い歓迎の声。テーマソングを踊りと一緒に歌うところになると、何人か前に出てきて私たちと一緒に歌って踊ってくれました!元気ですばらしい。この保育園も英語教育を取り入れており、広い世界を子どもたちに体験してほしい、という方針のようです。“Enjoy English” という英語担当の先生もいらっしゃいます。道理で、4カ国語でモットーを言うときも、“Harmony begins with me!” を堂々と言える子達がたくさん。

After playing a lot, we took a picture

It was fun, thank you so much!

When the program finishes, we usually run off being greeted with a high-five but this time it was the children who were sent off by us on the way back to their nursery. We heard one of them say: “It was like in a dream” and it became the quote of the day. When the run was over, the team members also said to each other: “It’s already over? It was like a dream.”


Children from Iwase Children's Home made a lot of preparations to welcome us

Now, the last visit of the Harmony Run this time was after-school care for children called Iwase Children's Home. About 20 children from 1st to 3rd grades of elementary school welcomed us. When we arrived, we were first shown to the hall inside. There was a “Welcome World Harmony Run” message written on the wall. While the instruments were being brought in, the children freely held the torch, talked with the runners and played “rock-paper-scissors”. During the country-guessing quiz they pointed at Czech Republic and Mongolia on a map on the wall.


Children running cheerfully around the yard

Mongolia is here!

The teachers told us that the children had been on an excursion today. In the second half of the program we went out and the children, full of energy, circled running around the yard. In the end, they put around our neck a lei which they had made themselves for us. “Welcome to Iwase, World Harmony Run” was written on it in cute handwriting. There were some children who ran after us screaming “I’ll run with you!”. Thank you! We owe much to the vice-manager, Ms. Yamada and Mr. Inoue from the Department for Youth of Kamakura City Hall.


A good-bye with a lei around the neck of each of us

These last two places were covered by the local FM radio station Kamakura FM, and its presentation was broadcasted the following morning. You can listen to the original program here. An article about this year's Run was also published in the newspaper Kamakura Asahi. Please, have a look at it here.


Moreover, a reporter from Japan Times English newspaper came and a nice article entitled "Global torch run lights up day for Kamakura children" was published later on. To read it, please follow this link.


Team Members:
砂押, 丹羽, 伊藤, 吉田, Akanda (モンゴル), オンボ (モンゴル), ボルマー (モンゴル), 山田, カレル (チェコ)

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