Guruhari Darshan, 7 June 2023 Morning, London, UK | Diksha Mahotsav
Diksha Mahotsav – Wednesday 7 June 2023
Mahant Swami Maharaj ordained three youths into the monastic order during a devotional ceremony at BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, London, on the morning of Wednesday 7 June 2023.
The highly educated and devoted youths received parshadi diksha and embarked on their lifelong path of worldly renunciation, self-realisation and service to God and society.
The diksha ceremony began with preliminary initiation rituals performed by senior swamis and the families of the sadhaks. Following the rituals, senior swamis addressed the assembly and spoke of their personal experiences of fulfilment. Mahant Swami Maharaj then completed the ordination ceremony and blessed each parshad with their new names.
Hari Patel, a law graduate from London, Harshil Dave, who completed an MPharm from Leicester, and Shamil Tailor, from Luton, who graduated in Business Administration, were then ordained as Eklavya Bhagat, Ruju Bhagat and Vibhishan Bhagat, respectively.
The newly ordained parshads will now continue their rigorous training at the BAPS seminary in Sarangpur, Gujarat, where they will lead a life of simplicity and austerity steeped in devotion, service and studies.
The six-year training course further supports them to become proficient in their personal spiritual endeavours related to worship, service, austerities and learning. The educational curriculum includes a deep study of Swaminarayan Hindu theology, history and literature as well as of the Ramayana, Mahabharat, Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads and other Hindu scriptures. It also includes a study of languages such as Sanskrit, Hindi, Gujarati and English, and world religions.
Eklavya Bhagat, one of the newly ordained parshads, shared his experiences after the ceremony. He said, “Even after Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s passing, that divine attraction and unconditional love has never diminished with Mahant Swami Maharaj, reinforcing for me that Shriji Maharaj [Bhagwan Swaminarayan] is forever pragat through the Satpurush. Realising this attainment to be rare, it doesn’t feel like I’ve made sacrifices or left luxuries behind. Rather, I feel humbled and overwhelmingly grateful because, although utterly undeserving, I feel as if I’ve been blessed with everything!”
Hiteshbhai Dave, the purvashram father of Ruju Bhagat, added, “It is a great honour for us that our son has been accepted by Mahant Swami Maharaj. We, as a family, feel extremely blessed. Who better to dedicate your life to?! Swamishri’s inner purity, saintliness and selfless work for others means he will be the best father and mother and family that he [Ruju Bhagat] can ever have! We are absolutely confident that this next chapter in our son’s spiritual journey will allow him to flourish and be the best he can and help others as well.”
Chandrakalaben, the purvashram mother of Vibhishan Bhagat, said, “It is our great privilege for Shamil to offer his life in devotion and service. Although he is leaving his home, he is joining over a thousand others to serve God and society – and as a mother, this is something that brings me and my family great joy, pride and satisfaction.”
Yagna, the purvashram sister of Eklavya Bhagat, also shared, “Hari and I shared a close bond as we grew up in satsang together. He was always immersed in his bhakti and seva at the mandir, and we could tell that he had always been inspired by Pramukh Swami Maharaj and now Mahant Swami Maharaj to live a higher life. His wisdom has helped our family progress spiritually, and now, he will be able to help many others do the same. I feel that I have not lost a brother, but gained a thousand brothers instead.”

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