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The Luminous Essence of Unity

Our Festival of Lights rekindled the light of peace.

The spirit of oneness shines bright

Festival of Lights honors the importance of religious diversity and its contributions to humankind. It commemorates universal spiritual values. It brings us together. Festival of Lights is a tradition at School of the Nations, and this year our School community celebrated the spirit of oneness.

For weeks, students and teachers researched, studied, and reflected on some of the teachings of many world religions. Together, they contemplated the beauty within each religion, gaining an understanding of common principles among them. Our School community then set the stage for the event. Lights, candles, ornaments, and flowers were part of the serene and peaceful setting. In keeping with our commitment to sustainability, all decorations for the Festival were made from recycled materials.

Amidst differences, conflicts, and uncertainties, we walk

On the evening of November 17, we experienced the culmination of all the effort and preparations. More than one-thousand guests joined us for the event. Elementary students, parents, grandparents, teachers, School Board members, and the Bahá’í community joined the celebration in a program that moved all present.

It was a moment for prayer and reflection. Everyone collaborated in creating a setting of silence and serenity. Festival of Lights involves devotions, songs of peace, and moments of silence; a repertoire of actions of unity, peace, and faith. The Elementary Parents choir and our School choir contributed with their beautiful voices.

We walk toward truth and unity

Lighting the candles was the highlight. Nine students lit nine candles in a special chandelier at the heart of the Festival in eulogy to the world’s nine major religions. Messages read by students and parents and hymns sung by our choirs complemented the luminous essence of unity.

Embracing world religions in a spiritual bond was moving. No principle was highlighted more than the Golden Rule: Do not do to others what you do not want done to you. At the end of the ceremony, guests enjoyed a banquet and the warmth of community. A display of goodwill and friendship.


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