Marking a significant moment in the history of the UAE, around 5,000 devotees and well-wishers thronged to participate in and witness the foundation stone-laying ceremony of the BAPS Hindu Mandir. Volunteers began to arrive at the site location as early as 6:00 a.m., with participants arriving at 8:00 a.m. The Shilanyas Ceremony, which is an ancient Vedic ritual performed to bless and sanctify the main foundation stones, commenced at 9:00 a.m.
The Sanskrit word ‘Yoga’ simply means ‘reunion’. Reunion implies an existing state of separation. You are separated from your real Self and blissfully unaware of it too! Ignorant of your Self, you identify with your body, mind and intellect and endlessly chase the world for happiness. Yoga is the search and pursuit of your real Self, culminating in Self-discovery, the native home of happiness.
Yoga is pursued fourfold. Hatha yoga, predominantly addressed to the body and vital pranas, ward off lethargy, indulgence and energy dissipation. It renders the body conducive to spiritual quest.
Karma yoga is dedicating actions to a higher ideal vis-a-vis working for a mundane, mechanical survival. Bhakti yoga relieves your mind from the self-inflicted bondage of attachment to stable identification and devotion. Jnana yoga shifts the direction of intellect from unending terrestrial concerns to transcendental enquiry upon the Self.
Since every human is composed of body, mind and intellect, the pursuit of the fourfold yoga, in proportion to individual constitution is indispensable for evolution. Due to its relative ease of demonstration, practise and immediate appeal to the body, postures and breathing in hata yoga, has hit worldwide eminence in no time. Continue reading “Yoga, the discovery of your Self”
The BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, locatedat 61 Claireville Drive, Toronto,celebrated Hindu Heritage Month, on November 25 and 26, in support of this initiative of the Government of Ontario. Visitors to the Mandir were greeted by volunteer tour guides and enjoyed the experience of arti, Abhishek and the Hindu Heritage Exhibition.
Special guests during the Hindu Heritage Month celebrations included:
- The Honourable Ahmed D. Hussen, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
- The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science
His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj inspired the creation of the BAPS Swaminarayan Mandir and many other mandirs around the world, including BAPS Swaminarayan Akshardham in New Delhi, to promote and preserve Hindu heritage and values for generations to come.
Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 97th birth anniversary was also celebrated on Sunday November 26.
Devotees and the community came together to commemorate the many years Pramukh Swami Maharaj had dedicated to promoting Hindu heritage and guiding the lives of individuals all over the world. Children and youths rehearsed for weeks before the festival, practicing devotional songs and traditional dances to share their enthusiasm and appreciation for Pramukh Swami Maharaj. They also prepared skits and speeches reminiscing on the influence that Pramukh Swami Maharaj has had on individuals. Continue reading “Hindu Heritage Month Celebrations at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir”