Pujya Bhaishri, Sandipani and devotees celebrate the month of Shravan and The occasions within this month with Shri Hari
The auspicious month of Shravan this year, from 31st July to 29th August 2011, was celebrated with great excitement and Vedic poojas at Shri Hari Mandir in Sandipani Vidyaniketan. This article will feature details on how Pujya Bhaishri, the teachers and students of Sandipani and other devotees celebrated the whole sacred month of Shravan with Shri Hari and also other festivals that fell within the month including: Raksha Bandhan, India’s Independence day, Janmashtami and finally Pujya Bhaishri’s birthday.
The Rishikumars of Sandipani not only performed daily rudrabhishek and laghurudrabhishek on Shri Chandramauleshwar Bhagavan in Shri Hari Mandir with other hosts, but also went to many shivalays (Shiv temples) in Porbandar and to a town called Babda where Lord Babadeshwar Mahadev resides to perform laghurudrabhishek.
One of the most dedicated members of Sandipani and the President of the Kampanagar Municipal Corporation, Shri Sureshbhai Thanki sponsored the daily abhishek in Shri Chandramauleshwar temple throughout the month of Shravan. In addition, the families of Shri Karu Ramde Odedra of Porbandar, Shri Kapilbhai Ompura of Mumbai, Dr. Manoj Joshi of Porbandar, Shri Karsanbhai Salet of Porbandar, Shri Vinubhai Thanki of Porbandar, Shri Bhurabhai Odedra of Porbandar, Shri Rambhai Modadia of Porbandar, celebrated comedian Shri Champrajbhai Dave and Shri Karshanbhai Bhutia of Jamnagar were the chief hosts of Shiv poojas during the holy month of Shravan.
Specials Darshans of Lord Shiv
During the month of Shravan, everyone took part in the rudrabhishek of Bhagavan Shiv in the mornings. Thereafter in the afternoons from 4pm to 8pm, the present devotees were blessed with the opportunity to do darshan of Shivji in various forms and get-ups. One day Bhagavan Shiv would be presented as though he was doing dhyan on the cold mountains of Himalayas, another day the devotees would see him meditating in a forest, or the darshan would include a continuous abhishek on Lord Shiv and one day Shivji was seated under a beautiful pavilion made of marigold flowers. It felt as though these amazing and elegant darshans of Lord Shiva were stuck in the eyes of everyone present!
Hindola Darshan (Darshan of Shri Krishna)
According to the customs of the Pushti marg, Lord Shri Krishna is rocked on various kinds of swings from Shravan sud ekam(the first day of Shravan) to Shravan vad bij (the 17th day of Shravan). Following thus tradition, different types of elegant swings were made for Bhagavan Krishna from cloth, flowers, fruits, vegetables, dry fruits, sandalwood and other materials. Shrimati Gitaben Ahuja of USA sponsored all these swings while Shri Dharambhai Thakrar of Mumbai sponsored the swing made out of pavitraa (a type of sacred dry grass).
At 9am on the day of Raksha Bandhan, Pujya Bhaishri and all the Brahmins of Sandipani and Porbandar town performed the rituals required of self sanctification under the witness of Shri Surya Dev. Varun Devta also duly obliged the gathering with his purifying showers. Thereafter, the afternoon sandhya, rishitarpan (oblation to the rishis), devtarpan (oblation to the Gods) and pitrutarpan (oblation to the forefathers) were performed. This was followed by the ritual of exchanging the sacred thread and having lunch. In the evening, Pujya Bhaishri and the assembled Brahmins tied Rakhi and proceeded to Shri Hari Mandir to tie Rakhi to the deities of the temple. Thus, the day of Shravani Purnima was duly celebrated at Sandipani Vidyaniketan with great traditional rituals and fervour.
The Independence day of India was celebrated with great gusto at Sandipani in the company of Pujya Bhaishri and the leading Gujarati author, Shri Narottam Palan. To begin with, at 8.30am, Pujya Bhaishri hoisted the flag and the National Anthem was sung. Thereafter, the students of Rishikul and Gurukul sang melodious patriotic songs and took part in a ceremonial parade. Items of Lazim were also presented on this occasion by the girls of the Gurukul. Then, Shri Narottam Palan said in his speech that the Japanese have developed the most advanced computer of our times named as ‘K’. The font used in this computer is the Sanskrit font. Sanskrit is the mother of all languages and this shows that it is slowly spreading in the world. Pujya Bhaishri also addressed everyone and said, “Tides will continue to rise in the ocean of issues and dilemmas. However we need to be and source for the solutions of these issues and the answers to these questions ourselves.” Pujya Bhaishri said that the students today are the new generation and urges the students to churn and look for the solutions to the present day problems. This way, the day concluded with distributing prasad.
The birth of Lord Shri Krishna, according to the Hindu calendar, is on the eighth day of the dark fortnight in the Shravan month. On the day, Pujya Bhaishri and the Rishikumars recited the first four chapters of the tenth canto of the Shrimad Bhagavat from 11pm to midnight. At midnight, the birth of baby Shri Krishna was celebrated amidst great joy. No one could control themselves out of bliss at the sound of Pujya Bhaishri and the devotees’ singing of ‘nand gher anand bhayo, jai kanhaiya laal ki!‘. Shri Baal Krishna was then bathed with panchamrit (mixture of milk, honey, yoghurt, ghee and sugar used for deities) and prasad was distributed to everyone present at the time.
The following day, nand mahotsav was celebrated with great fanfare from 9am to 11.30pm. At 11.30am, Pujya Bhaishri performed aarati of Bhagavan Baal Krishna. Thereafter, the temple was flooded with devotees coming for darshan of the Baal Krishna in the cot until 8pm.
The chief host of the entire festival was Varshaben Upadhyay of Santrampur.
Pujya Bhaishri’s Birthday Celebration
On 31st August 2011, the entire Hari Mandir was decorated beautifully. In addition, all the deities were dressed elegantly. At 9am, a pooja was performed to pray for a long life for Pujya Bhaishri. Thereafter, a programme was organised in the hall of the Hari Mandir complex where the trustees, teachers and students of Sandipani and many guests offered their pooja, tributes and good wishes to Pujya Bhaishri.
Sacred Flag Hoisting
Throughout the month of Shravan, several events of sacred flag hoisting on the domes of the Hari Mandir temple were held by various hosts as listed below:
On Shravan Sud Poonam of the Hindu calendar – Shri Bhupendrabhai Thakkar of Ahmedabad and Shrimati Indiraben Vinodbhai Sadhu of Zambia.
15th August – Shri Milindbhai Kunti of Porbandar
25th August – Shri Karu Ramde Odedra of Porbandar
26th August – Shri Bachubhai Atishbhai Odedra of Porbandar
All in all, the month of Shravan was a month filled with great celebrations and bliss for everyone present at Shri Hari Mandir during this time.