Early morning drizzle cleared as His Divine Holiness Acharya Swamishree arrived at the home of the sponsors of the third day’s scripture recitals. As Acharya Swamishree emerged from the house and made His way to the golden chariot, Bharasar Band boomed out a rendition of “Happy Birthday” in celebration of Acharya Swamishree’s 71st manifestation day. The hundreds of disciples that had gathered burst into song as Acharya Swamishree boarded His chariot. Disciples drew Acharya Swamishree’s chariot to the Sabha Mandap, where He dismounted His chariot at the entrance.
The sponsors of the recitals placed offering at the lotus feet of Acharya Swamishree as He stepped slowly into the Sabha Mandap and through towards the Sinhasan to take His place on the Gadi that takes centre stage – all whilst the previous night’s hit kirtan, “Thank you” boomed out across the sabha. After receiving the ‘chaab’ offerings from the sponsoring disciples, Acharya Swamishree showered His divine Ashirwad on all:
His Divine Holiness Acharya Swamishree’s Ashirwad
Today we are gathered to celebrate Kera Temple’s Shashtipurti Mahotsav. Anyone who experiences this Mahotsav will gets lost in its charm and God’s unconditional love. Yesterday evening, we all enjoyed the Bhakti Sangeet night. The Lord became extremely please with all those who performed last night.
One makes many attempts to look beautiful by taking many different types of medicines and performing plastic surgery, but that beauty does not last forever. Jeevanpran Swamibapa says that the easy way to keep this beauty forever is to perform devotion to the Lord. Therefore, if one wishes to attain happiness without much effort, they should perform devotion to the Lord.
Once, Vrajanand Swami and Raghavanand Swami were visiting the Village of Dhandhla to preach about the Satsang. These sants would never ask for anything from the people of this village. The villagers saw this and thought to themselves that these sants are very different to the other sadhus that visit the village. These sants would eat any cooked or uncooked food they received in alms and would perform meditation and devotion to God.
Lakshmichand, a local resident, listened to the discourses from these sants and became a disciple. After some time, Lakshmichand wanted to go abroad to earn some money so that he could alms to these sants. Before leaving to go abroad, the sants advised him to never forget God and that performing devotion to God is the true earning.
When Lakshmichand was on a ship heading abroad, the sea was very calm for three days, but on the fourth day there was a violent thunderstorm and the ship started shaking voilently as if it was about to sink. Everyone on the ship became frightened. Lakshmichand remembered what the sants had told him and started chanting the supreme Swaminarayan name. Lord Shree Swaminarayan listened to Lakshmichand’s prayers and just then the thunderstorm became calmer and the ship reached the shore safely.
When Lakshmichand arrived, he found a job and worked extremely hard. As he accumulated more and more wealth, he performed even more devotion to the Lord. One day, he became very ill and his boss offered him medicine, but it contained alcohol. Lakshmichand refused to take the medicine and started praying to the Lord. The ever merciful Lord himself came to give darshan to Lakshmichand and gave him some Prasad. This instantly cured him. After this, Lakshmichand returned to his village and gifted ten per cent of his earnings to the Lord (in accordance with the Lord’s commands in the Shikhshapatri).
The morning sabha concluded, and everyone departed to take Prasad lunch.
Evening - Bhavarpan Sandhya
A special Bhavarpan Sandhya evening event was held to celebrate the 71st manifestation day of His Divine Holiness Acharya Swamishree. The occasion was held at Ghanshyam Vaadi – a splendid 16 acre piece of land that had been developed and donated to the lotus feet of Lord Shree Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa and Acharya Swamishree. The area currently comprises of an especially built abode and residence for Acharya Swamishree as well as a covered, 90ft swimming pool for community use; the first of its kind in the entire Kutch region.
Although the event wasn’t due to commence until after 8pm, queues formed from 6pm despite the blazing heat – everyone was eager to get the best seats at the venue for what promised to be a spectacular evening.
Fireworks filled the sky as Acharya Swamishree arrived into the Sabha Mandap promptly at 8pm – His golden chariot twinkling in the setting sunlight. The jubilant crowd applauded as Acharya Swamishree made his way onto the stage, which had been created as a replica of a traditional farm scene, complete with farmyard animals. The evening commenced with the assembling of an elaborate and enormous cake display to be offered to the Lord. The principle aarti sponsors then had the opportunity to perform aarti and poojan to Lord Shree Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa and Acharya Swamishree on this auspicious occasion.
The evening took an extravagant turn when the principle sponsor of the evening revealed a surprise – a gift to Acharya Swamishree of a brand new top-range ice white Audi Q7 car. As His Divine Holiness disembarked the car, having toured the entire Sabha to give darshan, he was adorned with gold and crystal garlands and ornaments – a truly spectacular darshan. Acharya Swamishree then showered His divine ashiward on all. His Divine Holiness Acharya Swamishree’s divine Ashirwad
Today we are gathered to please Lord Shree Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa in a unique way, as we all are all truly devoted towards God. Once a disciple develops true love towards god, he can only think about God and nothing else. Seeing such unconditional love that a disciple has towards God, He surely fulfils his loving desires.
Now it is our duty to remain as God’s humble servants and follow his commands. In the 62nd Vachnamrut of the Gadhada middle section, it is stated that a true humble servant is one who enjoys only the darshan of God and only likes listening to religious discourses.
Such a humble disciple was Khima Dobaria from the village of Pithwajad. He thought to himself, “If Lord Shree Swaminarayan is omniscient, when he goes to Gadhpur, He will ask me for the sugarcane pieces that I have brought for Him without me telling or showing him.”
Before Khima Dobaria went to Gadhpur, he sat at the banks of the River Ghela to cut the sugarcane into 21 pieces. When he reached Gadhpur he stood quite far away from where the Lord was seated. Lord Shree Swaminarayan called him and asked him for the sugarcane pieces and also told him how he sat at river bank and cut the sugar cane into pieces.
Listening to this, Khima Dobaria became extremely pleased and fully understood that Lord Shree Swaminarayan was the one true god. Lord Shree Swaminarayan accepted the offering of the sugarcane pieces and declared, “This is the first time I have eaten such sweet juicy sugarcane!”
Seeing all the devotion here today, Lord Shree Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa has become extremely pleased and noted all of us in His personal diary.
Kirtan bhakti, sung by the renowned playback singer, Firoz, and a devotional dance, comprising of disciples from Kutch and Maninagar to a medley of kirtans, were performed before the wider sabha had the opportunity to offer aarti to the Lord, and gifts and flowers to Acharya Swamishree. The evening finished with everyone receiving Prasad thaar.
Day 3 Morning - Shree Ghanshyam Maharaj Shashtipurti Mahotsav, Kera
Day 3 Evening - Shree Ghanshyam Maharaj Shashtipurti Mahotsav, Kera