Her Holiness Shinso Ito Delivers Address at 20th Anniversary of Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaii

June 09, 2019
Honolulu, HI, USA

At the 20th anniversary of Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaii on Memorial Day, thousands of lanterns were released on the ocean from the shores of Oahu, in honor of loved ones and fallen service members. The illuminated paper lanterns carried the messages of hope and love from the nearly 50,000 people in attendance and a worldwide audience through a live internet broadcast.

Her Holiness Shinso Ito initiated this Ceremony in Hawaii in 1999, and it has continued to grow to become one of the largest Memorial Day observances in the country.

As demonstrated through the fusion of Shinnyo Taiko Drumming and traditional Hawaiian Music and Oli chant, the ceremony brings together people from all walks of life, uniting them in a human experience beyond the differences in ethnic, cultural and religious traditions. This year, the name of the ceremony was officially changed to “Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaii” in order to strengthen its intention to foster harmony amid diversity and encourage people to share their inner light with others for the benefit of extending a peaceful mind to people and the world.

Excerpts of Her Holiness Shinso Ito’s address are below:

We are many rivers, one ocean.

The spirit of inclusivity is about creating harmony amid diversity and in celebration of each person’s unique potential. Each person has the ability to awaken to their inner light of shinnyo, our inherent goodness.

‘Empowerment is each person’s unique ability to give meaning to life and live our lives in joy.’ —Shinjo and Tomoji Ito

Remembering the countless who came before us, celebrating how their lives have led to ours today, and taking action to make life meaningful for all.

Peace is built through our accumulated efforts to let our inner light of shinnyo shine through.

Shinnyo: Wisdom, Loving compassion, Innateness, Awakening

The flames of shinnyo are kept alive through our actions of kindness and warmth.

Share our joy of living in shinnyo—a light of hope and awakening.

Be that one and only flame that burns brightest in the face of the strongest winds. Never underestimate the power that is generated by coming together in shared purpose.

Each act towards positive change creates a ripple that transcends time and space. Harmony amid diversity—each individual expression of kindness and compassion counts.

Namu Shinnyo. May your inner light of shinnyo shine through to illuminate the world.”


View a replay of the ceremony online here and view media coverage of the Shinnyo Lantern Floating Hawaii on KHON-TV here and the Honolulu Star Advertiser here.