Peace for 2018: The New Year’s Mantram Relay


When the mind is still, we can become an instrument of peace.

– Eknath Easwaran

This year, some members of the worldwide BMCM community banded together to ensure that 2018 was ushered in with a flood of mantrams dedicated to peace. 

Being an instrument of peace can seem a very distant goal for us as individuals, but Easwaran gives us practical inspiration.

My grandmother, who was my spiritual teacher, always used the tamarind tree to illustrate the power of ordinary people. The tamarind is a big tree, with very small, thin leaves. On a hot day, the people of my old state of Kerala like to sleep in its shade. The leaves are so numerous and are packed so close together that they protect us from the tropical sun just as if they were one large canopy. ‘Little Lamp, you don’t have to look for big people,’ Granny would tell me. ‘Look for little people like yourself, then band together and work together in harmony.’ So don’t be intimidated by position or power or wealth. If little people like you and me work together, we can do a great deal to transform the world. 

Little People Like You & Me

In this spirit of community and banding together, the mantram relay was born! In the BMCM Living & Learning Facebook Group, Elizabeth, a community member, reached out with a brand new idea:

I had an idea that I wanted to share and see if others have interest in participating. On some auspicious day (maybe New Years Day?), I thought it would be neat to have a Mantram Relay Marathon for peace and well-being throughout the world. We could take the 24 hours of that day (or the first 12 hours) and everybody could sign up for a time slot (30 minutes? 1 hour?) during which time they will use their mantram with as much concentration as they can muster for peace and wellbeing throughout the world. During your time slot, you could go on a mantram walk, or do mantram art, or write mantrams, or sit still and say the mantram silently in your head. At the end of your time slot, you would figuratively pass the baton to the person who has signed up for the following time slot of dedicated mantrams. (I think it actually would be coolest if at least TWO people signed up for each time slot, so that we each would have a partner somewhere in the world who is saying the mantram with dedication at the exact same time as we are). Any takers?

There were so many takers! The online community quickly came up with a sign-up sheet so that folks could claim a half-hour time slot, and we soon had 162 different sign ups. And they kept on coming – people paired up for every time slot, and for some time slots we had as many as five or six people signed up!

By banding together, everyone felt like they had a way to contribute to peace worldwide.

The Relay

On January 1, 2018, the mantrams started at midnight in California, Washington, and Texas. After a half-hour, the “baton” was passed to Scotland and Belgium. For 24 hours the mantram baton made it across the United States to Minnesota, North Carolina, Louisiana, Florida, Colorado, Alaska, Canada, Nevada, Tennessee, New Jersey, Arizona and Hawaii, and also to the UK, New Zealand, India, Portugal and Guatemala. Knowing that we had fellow peace-seekers writing mantrams around the world was an amazing experience.

Here are some photos and comments from friends who participated in the event:

Loretta: “We are very happy to be a part of this world-wide effort today. What a great way to greet the new year!”

Nick & Diane: “Peace from Los Angeles.”

“It is wonderful to join with you all around the world. In addition to writing the mantram, I am finding that it is coming to mind more frequently! My God and My All My God and My All My God and My All”


Hasmita: “Here's what I did during my time slots (along with mantram walking and quiet repetition and writing).”

Linda: “30 minutes of mantra writing with continuous line.”

Peace is not created by governments and fighting forces. Peace is made by little people like you and me getting to know other people, other countries, other races.

– Eknath Easwaran

Arti: “May Sri Krishna bring peace to our lives.”

“It was amazing being a part of this mantra relay. Most definitely a very peaceful half hour. May the whole of 2018 be like that for the whole world.”


Lisa: “Happy New Year! May 2018 bring us all opportunities and challenges to strengthen and deepen our practice. It was lovely to mantram with everyone today.”

“It was a beautiful half hour to send those mantrams out and just be a little person, working with all of you, for peace in our selves and our world.”


Jean: “Mantram walk by horses.”

Logan & Geer: “Today we're experiencing our coldest temperature this winter, Geer opted for a mantram run, and I stayed inside and wrote mantrams while Purrsimmon joined me purring the mantram. Happy New Year and many mantrams for peace in the world.“

An Instrument of Peace 

In the spirit of the relay, we invite everyone to find ways to become instruments of peace this year. Whether in your home, work, or local community – there are opportunities everywhere! If you’re interested, we also invite you to join the Facebook group, BMCM Living & Learning, which is a place for passage meditators to share ideas and resources.

BMCM Living & Learning

Facebook Group for passage meditators

To end, we’ll leave you with inspiration from Easwaran for becoming an instrument of peace in 2018. 

When we ask to be made instruments of peace, what we are really asking for is the boundless determination to empty ourselves of every state of mind that disrupts relationships – anger, resentment, jealousy, greed, self-will in any form. Our first priority is to reform ourselves; without that, how can we expect to help other people reform themselves? It is the living example of a man or woman giving all they have to making love a reality that moves our hearts to follow. We do not need a bumper sticker that says, You are following an instrument of the Lord. Our everyday actions speak for themselves.