Day 1 - Jeevan Ghadtar Satsang Shibir Day 2 - Jeevan Ghadtar Satsang Shibir
Day 3 - Jeevan Ghadtar Satsang Shibir Day 4 - Jeevan Ghadtar Satsang Shibir
Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa Academy of Excellence organised a Jeevan Ghadtar Satsang Shibir Residential Trip from 7th to 10th April 2023.
Over 100 participants from Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury and Bolton took part in the activities at Carroty Wood - Kent. The event was designed to teach the essentials of living an ethical, spiritual and cultured life to the young members of the sanstha whilst also promoting unity, respect, fairness, compassion for one another and humility as the key teaching of our Bapa.
Over the course of the four days, a series of religious, physical and mental activities were arranged. These not only taught the participants about the glory of Shree Swaminarayan Gadi, but also aimed to develop key life-skills such as collaboration, empathy and trust, self sufficiency, team work balanced with independence, problem solving, communication and leadership.
The journey started at 07.30am at Kingsbury Mandir with a prathna to Lord Shree Swaminarayan, Jeevanpran Abjibapashree, Jeevanpran Shree Muktajeevan Swamibapa, Prem Murti Acharya Swamishree Maharaj and Gnan Mahodadhi Acharya Swamiji Maharaj.
Upon arriving at Carroty Wood, the six teams got straight into the day's activities; rotating throughout the day between three of the six activities; canoeing, archery, high ropes, low ropes, shibir, and kayaking. Sandhya Aarti was performed at 7pm followed the daily niyams. The religious theme for today was daily rites and rituals; how to invite and keep Lord Shree Swaminarayan with you throughout your day. The importance of the five mansi pooja's (mental worship of the Lord) was discussed and explained with the participants having the opportunity to perform one.
The day began with Mangla Aarti at 7.30am. The team activities continued from day 1 thus allowing each team to partake in each of the six activities. The shibir activities for the day focussed on the importance of attending mandir, mandir activities and personal worship to the Lord. A pooja workshop was held for the female participants.
Sandhya Aarti was performed at 6pm followed by katha and some team presentations with each team focussing on and explaining the importance of their individual team name (Kheda, Vadodara, Mumbai, Delhi, Bhuj and Kadi). The day ended with a scavenger hunt followed by a camp fire.
Following morning Niyams, a pooja workshop was held for the male participants. The afternoon was quickly filled with various sporting activities for which the players had to use mental, physical and practical skills. The day saw a number of additional members of the congregation join in the fun as the sunny forecast encouraged a fair few to make a day trip to the woodlands!
Evening sabha started at 6.30 pm followed by the remainder of the team presentations. The shibir sabha focused on the meaning of
"dabaya champaya aa Shree Swaminarayan Gadi na sharanma rahehjo"
- the words our Prem Murti Bapa that conclused every one of His divine Ashirwads.
The shortest of the four days started with the usual morning niyams. After breakfast, participants began preparing for their journey back home taking away with them the life skills, experience, spiritual and dharmic knowledge that has been gained in abundance over the preceding few days.
Team Shibir would like to thank all those who helped, supported and sponsored the event, including the Vekaria Trust.
Here are some of the first hand experiences from this meritorious shibir trip;
"The experience was great. I learnt so much about mansi pooja and why we go clockwise when doing pradikshna - it was really good as I got to know more about why we do these things and if I need to know more I will not hesitate to ask the elders of the mandir. Thank you so much to everyone who organised this amazing experience."
"The trip from mandir to carroty wood was amazing, during this time we had a lot of fun and we enjoyed ourselves. The food provided was delicious and tasty. All of us enjoyed the trip."
"We learnt what the phrase dhabya champaya is and why bapa says it after every ashiward as well as the sentiment and purpose behind this important phrase."
"The activities organised were great. Especially the high ropes - I loved that I could reach new heights that I didn’t know I could reach. I believe that I can apply this to my knowledge in the mandir community and expand my thinking to new found knowledges. I didnt know that there were so many different types of mansi pooja until I learnt it there and then. Thank You Shibir Team for organising this event."
"I have learned that teamwork is important and we must cheer for each other to courage them like on the high ropes and the leap of faith. Some of us were scared but we endured through."
"Our trip was awesome. It was so much fun and we faced our fears, from fears of height to fear of water. There where so many enriching and exciting activities that can be done by 7 year olds to a 50 year olds. Our relationship with Bapa grew immensely as we had a Pooja workshop, which definitely helped us improve the way that we connect with the Lord. That also improved as we would do Mansi Pooja that helped us to understand why we need that connection with God to be strong and stable. We would do mangla aarti every morning and had sabha at the end of the day that always helped us learn something new, such as the meaning of dabaya champaya."
"અમે આ સફરનો આનંદ માણ્યો અને અમે એ પણ શીખ્યા કે ધાબ્યા ચંપાયા શું છે અને બાપા દરેક આશીર્વાદ પછી શા માટે કહે છે તેમજ આ મહત્વપૂર્ણ વાક્ય પાછળનો અર્થ શું છે."
"I learned how to do pooja and why we do an extra panchan dandvat. We do this to ask for forgiveness if we did something wrong unknowingly or knowingly."
"The residential Shibir trip has taught me how to perform my daily routines properly and bonding/working as a team together. I have learnt how to improve my outdoor/adventure skills and my mapping skills. The scavenger hunt helped improve my mental ability when I had to solve the riddles to reach the end. My overall experience has been phenomenal and I would highly recommend everyone to go on the next one! Thank you to Team Shibir for organising all the activities!"
"We have really enjoyed the time we had in Carroty Woods. We had also learnt a phrase ‘dabaya champaya shree swaminarayan gadi ma sharanma rehevu’. Which means: Bapa will continue helping us if we stay within the karan satsang. Bapa will always love, help and support us."