Vyasa Puja 2012

Govindaji Gardens
Aug 23 2012 - Event

This years Vyasa Puja was held outdoors due to the dry spell that we have been experiencing during the monsoon season here in Karnataka.

During the morning devotees began to prepare Srila Guru Maharaja's Vyasasana with many colorful flowers and garlands. It seemed that everyone wanted to get involved in the decorating.

At 11:00 Srila Guru Maharaja came out of his room and we went to Srila Prabhupada's samadhi where Sripada Visnu Maharaja offered arati to Srila Prabhupada while Guru Maharaja led the devotees in singing Sri Guru Carana Padma as everyone offered puspanjali to His Divine Grace.

We proceeded to continue the program under the banyan tree where Guru Maharaja sat on the Vyasasana and Kunja-vihari Prabhu sang Ohe Vaisnava Thakura.

Visnu Maharaja was requested to speak first. Maharaja spoke from the mangalacarana of In Search of the Ultimate Goal of Life. He mentioned how it is printed in the Encyclopedia Britannica how scholars were astounded how Srila Prabhupada, at seventy years of age, managed to transplant a foreign culture in the western world in such a short amount of time. Maharaja also explained how Srila Prabhupada had the safest position in the world – guru-padasraya and this was a result of his purity and desire to serve his guru. At the close of his speech, Visnu Maharaja told the devotees that Guru Maharaja is always thinking of ways to help his disciples, but the disciples should ask themselves what they are doing for their guru.

Guru Maharaja then explained that it was Srila Prabhupada's strong faith in his guru and his sincere attempt to serve him that was the essence of his success and this success can be measured in two ways - firstly, in the way that he helped others and secondly, in his own internal bhajana life. Both of these come by the mercy of guru.

Guru Maharaja also said that when he is in the west, he is sometimes asked, "What should I feel when I chant?" But the question should really be "How will I feel when I chant?" The real feeling should be a strong desire to serve the Vaisnavas, Guru and Krsna. Many devotees talk about praying to Krsna, but our only prayer to Krsna should be, "Please engage me in Your service."

Next Jagadisvara Prabhu spoke and explained how the force of Sri Guru is in our life at every moment and how it is a "happy principle" in our lives. It is this principle that helps us understand what we should do and what we should not do. We are all here under his inspiration. Jagadisvara Prabhu also read a few inspiring words from Srila Prabhupada's purport to Bhagavad-gita 11.55.

After, Guru Maharaja further explained that it is a happy life when we are serving Guru and Krsna. Some people say, "I don't know what I want to do with my life." But Guru Maharaja explained that it was never 'your' life to begin with! You never asked to be the way you are. This life is your opportunity to achieve perfection and that is achieved through service to Guru and Krsna. However, westerners don't like to be told what to do. Everything is being dictated to us by the government, by law, by education, by advertising – it seems as though there is no freedom in the material world.

Guru Maharaja also took the opportunity to glorify his godbrothers, Visnu Maharaja and Jagadisvara Prabhu. He said that they had both done great service to Srila Prabhupada when he was present and later in Govindaji Gardens and other projects.

Sripada Giri Maharaja spoke next on the position of Srila Prabhupada and shared some points from one of Guru Maharaja's previous lectures on Prabhupada's appearance day. Giri Maharaja concluded that although Srila Prabhupada had contributed many great things, for the disciples of Guru Maharaja, his greatest contribution was Guru Maharaja himself.

Guru Maharaja then spoke of Srila Prabhupada's struggle to bring Krsna consciousness to the western world. He explained that Prabhupada did not invent anything – he did not create the Bhagavad-gita, Krsna or the Bhagavatam. He simply brought these things in a pure form to the western world. He also brought the songs of Bhaktivinoda Thakura. At this point in the proceedings Guru Maharaja made an announcement that today he was launching a new website – www.bhaktivinodainstitute.org and explained that the nature of the works of Thakura Bhaktivinoda was of the highest type of devotion and knowledge, so much so that if all the sastras were lost except for the works of Bhaktivinoda, there would be no loss because the whole process of Krsna consciousness is there.

Guru Maharaja went on to explain the literary contribution of Bhaktivinoda and how Sarasvati Thakura and Srila Prabhupada carried his unadulterated message throughout India and the world. Bhaktivinoda Thakura is the root of the modern Krsna consciousness movement, and so, for the pleasure of Srila Prabhupada and to further the Krsna consciousness movement Guru Maharaja wanted to inaugurate the Bhaktivinoda Institute on the first day of the auspicious month of Purusottama. He also explained that the purpose of the institute was to make all the works of Bhaktivinoda Thakura available on line on one website.

Some of the devotees read their offerings and then guru-puja was offered by Vamanadeva Prabhu to Guru Maharaja as devotees offered puspanjali and garlands. After the arati, Guru Maharaja gave some gifts to devotees who had helped significantly with this years Janmastami celebrations and the program ended with a wonderful prasadam feast.

Srila Guru Maharaja ki jaya!

Srila Prabhupada ki jaya!

Thakura Bhaktivinoda ki Jaya!

Vaisnava-vrnda ki jaya!

Guru Maharaja's Vyasasana
Balarama Prabhu Decorating the Vyasasana
Devotees Sit to Hear Hari-katha from Guru Maharaja
Devotees Assembled to Hear from Guru Maharaja
Caitanya Dasa Prabhu Translating into Kannada
Srila Guru Maharaja
Gaura Gopala Presenting the Vyasa Puja Book to Guru Maharaja
Giri Maharaja Showing the Devotees the Book
Guru Maharaja Reading the Vyasa Puja Book
Guru Maharaja Reading the Vyasa Puja Book
Visnu Maharaja Speaking
Guru Maharaja
Rupanuga Prabhu Reaing His Offering to Guru Maharaja
Guru Maharaja
Vaisnavananda Prabhu Reading His Offering
Srila Guru Maharaja
Giri Maharaja Offering Puspanjali
Vamanadeva Prabhu Offering Arati
Gaura Gopala Prabhu Offering a Garland
Guru Puja
Devotees Thronging to Offer Puspanjali