This year’s National Sanyukta Mandal Shibir, for London and surrounding centres, was held at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London on Sunday 11 September 2011. Over 1200 devotees attended the Shibir which was held in the presence of visiting sadhus from India, Anandswarup Swami and Munivatsal Swami. The Shibir was entitled “Tek Ekni” with the aim of understanding the supreme glory of Bhagwan Swaminarayan and developing firm faith in Him.
The Shibir began with the traditional deep pragatya after which, Anandswarup Swami spoke on the supremacy of Bhagwan Swaminarayan giving references from the Vachnamrut and various examples from the life of Bhagwan Swaminarayan. This was followed by a drama entitled “Sarvopari ni Sarvoparita” in which two lawyers debated the supremacy of Bhagwan Swaminarayan in a court setting. Following a question-and-answer session with Anandswarup Swami, Munivatsal Swami explained the history and greatness of the Swaminarayan Mantra. A video on the Swaminarayan Mantra was also shown. The morning session concluded with a question-and-answer session with the sadhus on upasana related topics.
The post-lunch session commenced with a video presentation “Brahmanand Relave” after which P. Yogvivek Swami gave a presentation on the ‘Importance and Need of Aksharbrahman’. Munivatsal Swami spoke on ‘Bhagya Jagya re Aaj Janva’ – how fortunate we are to have attained Shriji Maharaj in the form of Pramukh Swami Maharaj. A drama presentation “Tek Ekni” followed, in which the importance of ‘Pativrata ni Bhakti’ was explained through the examples of Hanumanji, Tulsidasji and Yogiji Maharaj’s bodh kathas. Anandswarup Swami summarised the aim of the Shibir by speaking on the importance of keeping ‘Pativrata ni Tek’ towards Bhagwan Swaminarayan and Pramukh Swami Maharaj and emphasising its benefits. A video of Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s ashirwad stressing the importance of upasana concluded the Shibir.
The delegates thoroughly enjoyed the Shibir and all departed with a greater and clearer understanding of upasana and its importance on their spiritual path.
“The presentation on Aksharbrahma I liked the best. It was clear, concise and articulately put. A difficult subject put into a simple form with concrete evidence from our scriptures. It has inspired me to spread this message as per Bapa’s wish.” – DP, Harlow
“I have not been in satsang for long and this is my first shibir. As a newcomer, I feel that our siddhants have been explained in a very clear and simple manner. I will make sure I that attend all future shibirs.” – KS, London
“I have recently come into the Sanyukta Mandal and was worried that I may not be able to cope with the level of Gujarati, but I was able to follow the whole day without any trouble. I was excited at the level of knowledge that was expected in terms of references from the Vachnamruts and incidents from the life of Maharaj. I have been inspired to concentrate more on my satsang reading to increase my understanding of upasana.” – DP, London
“The explanations of what Tek Ekni is and the importance of Pativratani Bhakti were explained with ease and were demonstrated in a practical manner. It’s given me the strength to cope with my day to day challenges and has also reiterated and emphasised the prapti that we have. ” – PS, London
“A very intellectually stimulating shibir. All topics presented in a modern way. Things we already know but refreshed in a ‘spicy’ way. It’s the best Sanyukta Shibir to date!” – P, Luton .