Transition of the Sun from Sagittarius to Capricorn during the winter solstice in the northern hemisphere (Uttarayan) is known as Makar Sankranti. The days become longer, the skies clearer and the breeze cooler. A feeling of anticipation, joy and jubilation grips all who celebrate the occasion of thanks giving and merry-making. Makar Sankranti is also celebrated with great enthusiasm as the Kite flying day.
On 14th January 2009, this auspicious day of Makar Sankranti was celebrated in Nairobi Temple in the presence of HDH Acharya Swamishree Purushottampriyadasji Maharaj, sants and a large number of devotees. Scripture recital of the “Shree Abji Bapashree Ni Vato” was held on this auspicious day. At the end of the scripture recital, devotees presented gifts to Lord Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa.
In His Divine Ashirvad HDH Acharya Swamishree said;
• The Lord and His Shatpurush stand for knowledge, spiritual light and wisdom.
• Their message is that of light, unity, equality and true selflessness.
• Makar Sankranti signifies that we should turn away from the darkness of delusion in which we live, and begin to happily let the light within us shine brighter and brighter.
• We should gradually begin to grow in purity, wisdom, and knowledge.
• During this holy festival we learn to feel our oneness with all creation; we learn to be unselfish and to tread the path of love, purity and forgiveness.
• We learn that our real wealth is the goodwill and friendship of those around us, the land on which our food grows, and the animals that help to make our work lighter.
• Day by day our bond of love with the Lord should get stronger and stronger.
In Maninagar, Ahmedabad sants and devotees also celebrated this day with great enthusiasm by decorating the temple with colourful kites. On behalf of Shree Swaminarayan Gadi Sansthan sants presented clothing and food packets to the poor.