Benedict began the Easter holiday with the traditional three-hour vigil and then delivered a homily in which he urged an end to violence in Africa and the Middle East, Voice of America said.
"Particularly in Syria, may there be an end to bloodshed and an immediate commitment to the path of respect, dialogue and reconciliation, as called for by the international community," the pope said.
Benedict also said faith in God rather than technology was the "true enlightenment" but voiced concern that Christian values were being obscured.
"If God and moral values, the difference between good and evil, remain in darkness, then all other 'lights' that put such incredible technical feats within our reach, are not only progress but also dangers that put us and the world at risk," the pope said. "Today we can illuminate our cities so brightly that the stars of the sky are no longer visible. Is this not an image of the problems caused by our version of enlightenment?"