BAPS Swaminarayan Sanstha organized special assemblies across North America to pay tribute to the late former President of India, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. The event also honored the legacy of Dr. Kalam with the launch of his final book and gift to mankind, Transcendence.
Hundreds of community members joined to honor India’s former president, scientist and rishi. The program began with prayers for Dr. Kalam followed by video presentations depicting the life story of Dr. Kalam and the remarkable 14-year journey between Dr. Kalam and His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj, the fifth spiritual successor of Bhagwan Swaminarayan. Most astonishing about their profound friendship is that Dr. Kalam was not conversant in Gujarati, and Pramukh Swami does not speak English. Despite the language barrier, they were able to transcend communication challenges. The resulting bond was life changing for Dr. Kalam and is articulated in his final book, Transcendence.
Community leaders shared their experiences with Dr. Kalam and Pramukh Swami Maharaj as well as the philosophical and spiritual guidance Dr. Kalam received from Pramukh Swami Maharaj that helped shape his purpose and direction in serving India. Finally, the book was officially inaugurated by Swamis along with community leaders. Speaking on the occasion, Sadguru Pujya Doctor Swami said, “The best way to pay a tribute to Dr. Kalam’s life is to live our lives like he lived his. A life of simplicity. A life of hard work. A life of devotion. A life filled with spiritual wisdom." The assembly ended with a moment of silence and candle-lighting as everyone paid a sincere tribute to Dr. Kalam.