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Full circle - The Epic return to Trinity

Atomic bomb fire extinguished

The flame from Hiroshima has now been returned to its place of origin and extinguished. A flame was lit in 1945 from the embers of the fires in Hiroshima that the atomic bomb started. The flame has been kept in a temple close to Nagasaki. Every year monks have walked from Hiroshima to Nagasaki, and there walked in circles to symbolize that this should be the last bomb.

Now the monks have brought the flame across to California and walked through the desert to the place of the first atomic bomb explosion, called Trinity, near Alamogordo in New Mexico. There they were joined by people working for a nuclear weapon free world There was a moving ceremony in complete silence. The torch with the flame was passed from monk to monk and to us and then used to ignite a large paper with a prayer written in Japanese. The paper had been folded around paper-cranes from Hiroshima and ropes from the sandals the monks had carried on their walk.

When the fire had died away the ashes and sand was collected and partitioned between four lacquer boxes, who fitted inside a larger box. The very beautiful boxes were crafted by the foremost master in Japan. The four boxes are going to be given to the White Sands museum close to the site, to Hiroshima and to Nagasaki and the content in the fourth box is going to be divided into for boxes that will be given to the leaders of the eight states who have nuclear weapons. Sixty years is an important time period for Buddhists. The energy from the primeval forces of the universe was unleashed by man for the first time at this site and is now returned.

The circle is completed. Now is the time to begin a sixty year period not dominated by the threat of extinction by nuclear weapons but by finding ways to remove the threat. Never again Hiroshima and Nagasaki! The monk's walk and ceremonies have been filmed by a team financed and inspired by Steve Seagal who is going to make it into documentary. The ceremony at Trinity was sent out to all major TV media. The Global Nuclear Disarmament Fund, founded by IPPNW, "Active Music" and others, were among the organisers. Matt Taylor and his volunteers, in particular Cindy McClure had done great work to prepare this solemn and profound ceremony.

Gunnar Westberg, Co-President of IPPNW

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