As we approach the season of many Hindu festivals and occasions, which would normally bring families and friends together, this year is a year of building those connections through faith, shared purpose, and virtual celebrations. Just as His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj set the foundation of Swaminarayan Akshardham, North America with the Shilanyas Pujan Vidhi on the auspicious day of Dashera in 2011, His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj blessed the topmost stone of Swaminarayan Akshardham Mahamandir through the Amalak Pujan Vidhi on Dashera - October 25, 2020. Pujya Sadguru Swamis, Swamis from North America, and devotees worldwide participated simultaneously and virtually with Mahant Swami Maharaj.

The amalak or amalsar, is the topmost stone of a traditional Hindu mandir and is crowned by the kalash (a set of gilded urns), symbolizing the mandir's completion. Mahant Swami Maharaj himself expressed a deep inner wish to sanctify the amalak before the stone's final journey to Robbinsville, New Jersey. 

The live webcast of the event began at 8:15 pm EDT in North America, coinciding with Mahant Swami Maharaj's morning puja in Nenpur, Gujarat, India, at 5:45 am IST. Pujya Aksharvatsal Swami emceed the event and provided details on the importance of the Amalak Pujan Vidhi. Musical performances of youths and adults from across North America were shown to begin the program. Afterward, Swamis from Robbinsville, New Jersey led devotees through a Mahapuja, an ancient Vedic ritual praying to God for harmony, world peace, as well as the successful completion of the Swaminarayan Akshardham. Sadguru Pujya Ishwarcharan Swami echoed the spirit of enthusiasm and eagerness of devotees to fulfill His Holiness Pramukh Swami Maharaj's vision of building the Swaminarayan Akshardham to uphold Hinduism's timeless traditions for generations to come. 

Mahant Swami Maharaj showered his heartiest blessings on this momentous occasion, emphasizing the work of Swaminarayan Akshardham in North America successfully progressed due to samp, suradhbhav, and ekta. Mahant Swami Maharaj gave his utmost appreciation to the devotees who continue to engage in the seva of the Swaminarayan Akshardham. 

By participating virtually in this auspicious pujan vidhi, thousands of families were able to feel that Swaminarayan Akshardham was quickly becoming a reality. United with devotion and dedication, devotees and well-wishers worldwide enthusiastically await the anticipated completion and inauguration of the Swaminarayan Akshardham in North America by His Holiness Mahant Swami Maharaj.

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