With the grace and inspiration of Pramukh Swami Maharaj, over 450 karyakars from across the UK gathered at Warwick Conference Park on Friday 22 August 2008 for a four-day National Karyakar Shibir, entitled ‘Satpurush | Siddhanta | Sanstha’.

Structured with a balance of auditorium sessions, tailored workshops, Mandal-specific breakouts and team-building activities, the programme delivered the key message that the Sanstha is the Satpurush’s body and the Siddhanta is his soul. The workshop and training sessions complemented the spiritual learning with practical skills and specific requirements that the karyakars need to enhance their respective seva and further the vision of Bhagwan Swaminarayan.

After a rousing introductory session on Friday evening laying out the theme and format of the shibir, the second day focused on the topic of Satpurush. Karyakars and sadhus provided an enlightening insight into the concepts of swarupnishtha and agna, ruchi and anuvrutti through powerful speeches, multimedia presentations and interactive sessions with the audience.

Fresh from the understanding of the Satpurush, ‘the soul of the Satpurush’ became the focus of the third day. The understanding of God as karta-harta, a fundamental aspect of our Siddhanta, was addressed during the morning session. In the evening session, the concepts of shraddha, khap and samagam were effectively elaborated upon using sketches, speeches and videos interspersed with prasangs from the life of Swamishri and exemplary devotees.

Karyakars have an important responsibility to shape the future of BAPS and so the third and final element of the shibir was covered on the fourth day. Every karyakar had the opportunity to reflect upon his/her personal role in the Sanstha and was inspired to take personal responsibility to propel BAPS further.

Throughout the four days, many important concepts were learned and addressed to help karyakars progress in their personal satsang and seva roles, and a summary of the key points was provided with a series of short sketches. In the conclusion to the shibir, Yogvivek Swami related the subject matter to Swamishri’s life. A video montage of Swamishri’s blessings was presented for the grand finale before the final prarthna was sung to mark the end of an exceptional and memorable shibir.

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