A three day festival was held in celebration of Shree Ghanshyam Maharaj's 61st anniversary. Details and photos of the first two days of the festival are now available.

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Friday 11th March 2005

A three day festival was held in celebration of Shree Ghanshyam Maharaj’s 61st anniversary.

  • On the first day, Acharya Swamishree commenced the scripture recital of the divine scripture, Shree Swaminarayan Gadi. He also presided over 75 simultaneous recitals of Shree Abji Bapashree ni Vato.

In His divine blessings, Acharya Swamishree said;

  • A true Guru eliminates ignorance and bestows teachings that lead one to the ultimate.

  • By obeying the commandments of such a true Guru, nothing is impossible to attain.

  • One must remain dedicated and trusting in the Guru, even when seemingly difficult circumstances are experienced; as it is the Guru that will lead you to away from the troubles.

  • We have been fortunate to attain such an unsurpassed Guru, Shree Jeevanpran Swamibapa; whose darshan is equivalent to the darshan of the almighty Lord Swaminarayan. By remaining at His shelter, i.e. remaining dedicated to Shree Swaminarayan Gadi, absolute salvation has been attained.

During the evening assembly, a concert of devotional songs was held. Performances were given by Gujarat’s infamous folk singers, including Bhikhudan Gadhvi, Gopalbhai Barot and Sukhdevbhai Gadhvi.

Saturday 12th March 2005

Day 2 of the Mahotsav was also Shree Sadguru Din. It was also Fagan Sud 2, the auspicious day that Jeevanpran Swamibapa entrusted our beloved Acharya Swamishree with the sovereignty of Shree Swaminarayan Gadi and made Him the subsequent Acharya. This historical event took place precisely 26 years ago.

In celebration of this event, a procession was held from Shree Swaminarayan Tower to the Mandir.

In His divine blessings, Acharya Swamishree said;

  • If you enjoin your life with Lord Swaminarayanbapa Swamibapa, you remain contented. If instead, you remain infatuated with progressing in the eyes of the world, and become engrossed in worldly pleasures, you will experience discontentment.

  • A guru and his disciple were walking along a mountainous region of the country. It was a scorching hot day. Their feet were burning from the hot ground beneath them and their heads were burning from the intense sunlight. However, there was nowhere for them to go. They did not even have any water to relieve them of their intense thirst. After many hours, they saw a banyan tree and ran towards it. They sat in the shade of the tree and relaxed in the cool breeze that was blowing. A small stream was running past the tree, so they drank the fresh water. Soon, they fell asleep. After a few hours, when they awoke, the guru asked his disciple, “In this intense heat, we came and sat in the shade of this banyan tree. What experience did you gain from this?” The disciples replied, “I don’t know about what else I experienced, but after being tormented by the heat, I immediately felt immense contentment under this tree.” The guru said, “That is exactly what I wanted to say to you. The banyan tree may not be as tall as other trees, but it gives peace, tranquillity and shelter. A palm tree may be much taller, but it is thin. Consequently, it will not give any shelter.”

  • Others may be taller and grander, but they are of no substance. It is here, at Shree Swaminarayan Gadi that ultimate bliss is experienced. It is here, at the home of Lord Swaminarayan that the tranquillity of the Lord’s Murti is attained. Here, one attains the divine shelter of Jeevanpran Swamibapa, which is akin to the shade of the banyan tree. True peace is found only here, in Maninagardham.

During the evening assembly, a slide show of Acharya Swamishree’s recent tour of East Africa was shown.

Then, an adaptation of the popular television game show “Who wants to be a Millionaire (Kon Banegaa Kadodpati)” was played. The new game was called Kon Banegaa Gnaan-vaan (Who will be the Knowledgeable One). Teams were asked questions based on our religious philosophy and history.