Mandya Preaching Programs

Mar 2 2011 - News

(The following is a report by Syamasundara Dasa Brahmacari on the recent preaching programs in Mandya)

On 26th February, Sripada Bhakti Vijnana Giri Maharaja and the devotees of Sri Narasingha Caitanya Matha were invited to the inauguration of the Vara-siddha Vinayaka temple in Mandya. Though the temple is a demigod temple with deities of Siva, Parvati and Ganesa, the devotees took the opportunity to speak hari-katha.

The festival began with a procession from Mandya's main road up to the new temple for about half a kilometre. The devotees were taken in the procession escorted by two-hundred and fifty traditionally clad ladies carrying purna-kumbhas (auspicious pots) on their heads. Arriving at the temple, Sripada Giri Maharaja was received with nadeswara-vadana, then Giri Maharaja, along with two other swamis from local mathas performed the kalasa-abhiseka on the roof of the temple.

Sri M. Shrinivas (the present MLA of Mandya) and Sri M. S. Atmanand (former MLA of Mandya) were invited to preside over the function as chief guests. The program began with a brief introduction of all the important guests attending the event. After the introductions a lamp was lit by the swami's and other guests, then all the invitees were requested to speak a few words on the occasion. Sripada Giri Maharaja spoke in English and Syamasundara Dasa Brahmacari translated it into Kannada. Maharaja spoke on the importance of temples and the proper reason for going to a temple. He also spoke on how a devotee worships Siva as a great Vaisnava.

Apart from the temple inauguration, Giri Maharaja had also been requested to deliver lectures every saturday for seven weeks at the same temple. Therefore, the evening after the inauguration, Giri Maharaja delivered a lecture in English on Srimad Bhagavad-gita which was translated into Kannada by Sri Gopal Das Adhikari. The program began with bhajanas led by Gaura Gopala Dasa Brahmacari. Maharaja began his lecture explaining that temples should exist to educate people on atma-vidya (knowledge of the soul) and brahma-vidya (knowledge of God).

Maharaja summarised the first chapter of Bhagavad-gita describing the Mahabharata War and how Bhagavad-gita originated. During the lecture, Maharaja spoke about various foodstuffs that can be offered to Krsna and gave a strong message saying that consumption of non-vegetarian food affects the consciousness of the consumer, thus deteriorating spiritual growth. At the end of the lecture there were a few questions from the audience to which Maharaja gave satisfactory answers. The program ended with a final bhajana and prasadam distribution. The program was attended by about sixty people.

After the program Madhumangala Dasa Adhikari kindly hosted Maharaja and the devotees for prasadam at his residence.

Arrival at the Program
Giri Maharaja and Swamijis
Lighting the Inaugural Lamp
Maharaja speaking at the function
Speaking at the Function
VIPs Honoring Giri Maharaja
Evening Program at the Vara-Siddha Vinayaka Temple
Giri Maharaja lecturing with Sri Gopala Dasa translating
Lecturing in the Temple