1 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Shravan vad 5) Saturday, Dallas
The husband of Mayoress Becky Miller of Carollton City and the husband of State Representative Linda Harper-Brown, Mr Leel Brown, presented a proclamation and Key to the City to Swamishri.
In the evening assembly balaks and kishores presented a programme on Swamishri’s tremendous efforts in developing Satsang in USA through his vicharans from 1977 onwards. The presentation was interspersed with dramas and speeches of veteran devotees.
Thereafter the Mayoress and State Representative were honoured by the women volunteers and their husbands were honoured and blessed by Swamishri. Both the honoured guests were also the chief guests of the women’s convention held in the afternoon.
Finally, Swamishri blessed the assembly lauding the evening programme and the faith, understanding, sacrifice and unity of the devotees who endeavoured in spreading Satsang.
2 September (V.S. 2063, Shravan vad 6) Sunday, Dallas
At 11.20 am Swamishri performed the murti-pratishtha rituals of pujan and arti of the marble murtis of Akshar-Purushottam Maharaj, Radha-Krishna Dev, Sita-Ram and Hanumanji, Shiv-Parvati and Ganpatiji, Nilkanth Varni (abhishek murti) and the Guru Parampara. The murtis would be established in the two new hari mandirs in Dallas (presently under construction) and Lubbock town. The Governor of Texas, Rick Perry, had sent a welcoming letter to Swamishri. Swamishri blessed Congressman Pete Sessions and Congressman Kenny Marchant, who presented a welcoming letter to Swamishri. The Mayor of Irving City, Herbert Gears, presented a proclamation to Swamishri. After their addresses Swamishri was honoured with garlands by senior sadhus. Thereafter the kishores and yuvaks performed a cultural dance to celebrate the mandir pratishtha festival. Finally, Swamishri blessed the assembly by elaborating about the restlessness of the mind. He added that to stabilize it one has to understand and imbibe the glory of God. Later, Swamishri consecrated an abhishek murti of Shri Nilkanth Varni in the present hari mandir. The next day Swamishri departed from Dallas at 5.30 pm and landed at San Jose International airport at (9.20 pm, Dallas time) 7.20 pm San Jose time.
4 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Shravan vad 8) Tuesday, San Jose, Janmashtami
The evening celebration of Janmashtmi at the BAPS hari mandir had an agenda of speeches, bhajans and selected drama performances of Krishna Lila. The balaks, kishores and yuvaks of San Jose performed a welcome dance for Swamishri. Thereafter he was honoured with garlands by senior sadhus. On behalf of the Mayor of Milpitas, Chuck Reed, welcomed Swamishri and said, “I am happy to be here on behalf of the entire city of San Jose. I do have a proclamation from the City of San Jose because we wanted to recognize the work that has been done by the people of BAPS in Miliptas. Not just for people in the room, but for people around the community, and as I know very well, people around the world. “On behalf of the City of San Jose, we are proclaiming September 4, 2007, as BAPS Centenary Day.”
The Supervisor of Santa Clara County, Pete McHugh, said, “I wanted to be here not just because of what Swamishri does and what all of you do; it’s what you represent – and it’s helping people: whether it’s disaster relief, helping people learn to read and write and building character. It is the goodness that you do to make this a better world. I’m going to present to His Divine Holiness an honorary citizenship thanking him for the good that he and you do.” The Consul General of India, Shri B.S. Prakash, spoke to the assembly, “It is a great honour for me to be in the sannidhi of Swami Pramukh Maharaj ji. India is more than business, more than technology; ultimately it is spirituality. It is gnan, it is dhyan, it is the parampara that we are going back to 1500-2000 years ago of bhakti and of a life lived in all these values of karma, of yoga and bhakti. I am very lucky to live very close to Akshardham in Delhi. But going beyond the architecture, going beyond the cement and stone, the message that the Sanstha has spread all over the world in terms of bhakti, seva and ultimately by having these temples spread the message of India’s spirituality is truly unique.” Finally, Swamishri blessed the celebration assembly, “Bhagwan Shri Krishna came on earth and carried out a wonderful mission. He inspired dharma in people and destroyed adharma. For peace dharma is very important.”
6 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Shravan vad 10) Thursday, San Jose
The evening assembly commemorated the BAPS Centenary Year. The celebration programme was interspersed with speeches by senior sadhus and cultural dances by balaks, kishores and yuvaks. In conclusion Swamishri blessed the congregation, “The root of the Centenary Celebration is Shastriji Maharaj. He was a God-realized sadhu, and God worked through him. He never desired for worldly fame or that countless people revere him. He wished only to spread the knowledge of Akshar Purushottam and liberate the jivas. But in this world the good always face problems. Bhagwan Ram, Krishna and Swaminarayan faced difficulties and opposition. Those who fail to understand oppose and create problems, but the truth always prevails.”
Vishwashanti Mahayagna ,San Jose and Murti-Pratishtha, San Jose
8 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Shravan vad 12) Saturday, San Jose, Chino Hills (LA)
Yesterday a yagna was held for the consecration ceremony of new murtis at the San Jose hari mandir. Today Swamishri presided over the murti-pratishtha rituals at the newly built BAPS hari mandir. Tyagvallabh Swami performed the rituals of the marble murtis of Akshar-Purushottam Maharaj, Ishwarcharan Swami performed the rituals of Radha-Krishna Dev, Viveksagar Swami performed the rituals of the Guru Parampara, Yagneshwar Swami for Sita-Ram and Hanumanji, Yagnavallabh Swami for Shiv-Parvati and Ganapatji and Dharmacharan Swami performed the rituals of Nilkanth Varni. In conclusion Swamishri invoked the presence of God in the murtis, performed the pujan ritual and finally arti. Thereafter Swamishri presided over the pratishtha assembly. The senior sadhus addressed the audience, and balaks, kishores and yuvaks performed a cultural dance to commemorate the function. Then the Mayor of Milpitas, Jose Esteves, addressed the assembly, “Jai Swaminarayan. Namaste. Om Shanti. I am very happy to be here. I want to welcome you to the beautiful city of Milpitas. With the mandir the city will become more beautiful. I want to express my gratitude for all that you do. Today is even more special because we have with us the presence of HDH Pramukh Swami Maharaj.” The Mayor presented a Key to the City to Swamishri. Former Mayor and present supervisor, Pete McHugh, said, “Congratulations on the successful completion of the BAPS Centenary and best wishes for a bright future of BAPS and its aura of spiritual enlightenment, harmony and world peace. And congratulations on the successful inauguration of the new BAPS mandir, where Swamishri has kindly invited Akshar-Purushottam Maharaj to be present with BAPS gurus and other favourite deities.” He then presented a certificate of recognition to Swamishri. The Mayor of Sunnyvale City, Otto Lee, said, “Today is a very wonderful day for BAPS mandir and cultural complex to have this wonderful opening. Because of 100 years of charitable work this organization has done to bring food, to bring shelter, and most important, to bring comfort to those in dire need around the world. BAPS is most highly commended for this wonderful effort for the past century, bringing peace and freedom of suffering from all around the world.” Thereafter the Mayor presented a proclamation to Swamishri. Finally Swamishri blessed the assembly, “The mandir is beautiful and thousands will benefit from it. Today many feel that money is wasted in making mandirs. One should spend them in social services. We need hospitals, schools and colleges in society. If one were to think deeper one would see that we also need mandirs because through them we are cured of mental problems and frustrations.” At 6.00 pm Swamishri departed from San Jose and landed at Chino Hills airport, LA, at 7.00 pm. Swamishri was welcomed by BAPS sadhus and the Mayor of Chino Hills, Curt Hagmann, and Councilmen Bill Krueger and Gary Larson. During Swamishri’s stay volunteer devotees of different suburbs and cities gave satsang activity reports: Serritos, Arteeziya, Fullston, San Fernando Valley, South Orange County, Inland Empire, Victorville, Bastro, Corona, North Orange County and Anaheim.
The evening assemblies were celebrated as Swagat Day and Kishore Day (9/9), Youth Day (11/9), Murti-Pratishtha Day (15/9) and Children’s Day (16/9).
9 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Shravan vad 13) Sunday, Chino Hills (LA); Kishore Day
In the evening assembly, after Swamishri had been honoured with garlands the kishores narrated incidents about Swamishri’s care and love for them. Thereafter a video was presented on Swamishri. Then the kishores performed a cultural dance and lastly they sang, “Bhulish hu jagatni mãyã.” Finally Swamishri blessed the assembly, “The kishores performed a cultural dance before us. We have seen the cultural values they have been exposed to. Today we find that the (social and cultural) climate is going awry. It is therefore painful to see the offtrack lives of children, teenagers and youths. Yogiji Maharaj, however, thought of inspiring character in the lives of children and youths so that they could walk the path of goodness, please their parents, walk the path of bhakti and dharma and through such cultural performances be blessed with moksha. Today that inspiration of Yogiji Maharaj has reached many places in India and America.” Swamishri blessed the invited guests: Former Mayor of Chino Hills, Gary Larson; Planning Commissioner of Chino Hills Art Bennett, County Councilman of Chino Hills, Peter Rogers; Director of Mystic India, Keith Melton; Chino Hills Public Work Commissioner, Barry Fischer and industrialist Suru Manek.
15 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Bhadarva sud 4) Saturday, Chino Hills; Murti-Pratishtha Ceremony
At 8.50 pm Swamishri arrived in the assembly held in a huge marquee. A replica of Dada Khachar’s darbar formed the stage backdrop with the marble murtis of Shri Akshar-Purushottam Maharaj, Ghanshyam Maharaj, Harikrishna Maharaj (metal), Radha-Krishna Dev, Sita-Ram and Hanumanji, Shiv-Parvatiji and Ganpatiji and Guru Parampara. The Brahmin pundits, Shri Ghanshyambhai Shukla and Mukeshbhai, were conducting the pratishtha rituals. The initial rituals had been completed by the senior sadhus: Tyagvallabh Swami, Ishwarcharan Swami and Viveksagar Swami. Swamishri performed the final rituals before Shri Akshar-Purushottam Maharaj by ‘opening the eyes’, invoking the Divine, holding a mirror and performing pujan of all the murtis. After the annakut was arranged Swamishri performed the pratishtha arti and mantra pushpanjali. Finally Swamishri blessed the congregation and praised the faith, patience and unity of the devotees of LA. Then the devotees honoured Swamishri’s Shri Harikrishna Maharaj. A nagar yatra of the murtis was carried out in the mandir precincts. The murtis were arranged on golf carts with children, teenagers, youths dressed in traditional dresses and dancing to the celebration tunes, bhajans. Sadhus and devotees joined the procession, singing dhun and bhajan.
At the rear of the nagar yatra women devotees in traditional dress were singing dhun and bhajan. The murtis were then established in the Haveli foyer for darshan. The next day (16/9) Swamishri performed the rituals of the first stone-laying ceremony on the mandir kanpeeth. In the evening, children and volunteers presented a Children’s Day programme themed ‘Educational Excellence’. The invited guests were honoured: Congressman Gary Miller, Protem Mayor of Chino Hills Mr Hagman, Former Mayor of Chino Hills Mr Ed Graham, Council Member of Chino Hills Mr Bill Krueger, Orange County Superior Court Judge Mr James Gray, Planning Commissioners of Chino Hills Mr Art Bennett and Mr Adam, Engineer and Developer Mr Jan Dabrey and President of Chino Hills Medical Center Mr James Lally.
17 September 2007 (V.S. 2063, Bhadarva sud 6) Monday, Chino Hills (LA), New York
At 11.47 am Swamishri and his entourage of sadhus and devotees departed by flight from Chino Hills (LA) and landed at La Guardia airport at 7.45 pm (4.45 pm LA time). At 8.00 pm Swamishri arrived at the BAPS Swaminarayan hari mandir in Flushing, New York.