Vyasa Puja Celebrations Johannesburg 2016

Hare Krishna

Please accept our humble obeisances
All Glories to Srila Prabhupada
All glories to our Dearest Guru Maharaja

This time of the year is really cold in Johannesburg. To most people Friday, 15 July 2016 was just that – a cold, winter afternoon in Sandton, Johannesburg, but for the disciples of HH Lokanath Swami Maharaja it was a beautiful, glorious day because we would be celebrating our beloved Guru Maharaja’s first ever open Vyasa Puja at ISKCON Sandton Temple. We normally have a private Vyasa Puja, but this year in line with ISKCON 50, we decided to celebrate in style. All the disciples (four of us, but we felt like 40) and well-wishers within the South African ISKCON Yatra in Johannesburg united to celebrate the most auspicious 67th Vyasa Puja of Gurudev in a great way. Disciples were in anxiety as the response to the invite had a slow start. However who could doubt the mercy and the blessings flowing on such a felicitous day so it was no surprise that the temple soon started to fill up.

The celebrations started with an introduction of Guru Maharaja by Das Avatar Dasa. This was followed by the meaning of Vyasa Puja which highlighted the reason behind this celebration. His Grace and Gurudev’s godbrother, Nanda Kumar Prabhu (temple President of ISKCON Sandton) delivered a beautiful talk on Guru Maharaja. His Grace felt inspired by reading the Guru Maharaja’s books, especially “In Conversation with Srila Prabhupada” and he alluded to the fact that he is looking forward to reading Vraja -manadala Darsana. He also emphasized how Srila Prabhupada had instructed Guru Maharaja to start the Padayatra which has continued and grown and is spreading to every town and village.

His Grace Sveta Dvip Prabhu from Port Elizabeth then gave an inspirational overview on his interaction with Guru Maharaja and the lessons he had learnt on Padayatra. His explanation on how the first set of Deities were stolen because of their beauty had everyone present completely mesmerised. He then went on to explain the formation of the current Padayatra Deities.

Both Nanda Kumar Prabhu and Sveta Dvip Prabhu echoed the sentiments of all present and prayed that Guru Maharaja continues with the Kathas in South Africa and that all the devotees are blessed and inspired by Guru Maharaja’s ecstatic kirtanas and discourses.
Sadhana Sakti Devi Dasi then read Guru Maharaja’s offering to Srila Prabhupada which in essence glorified the journey of ISKCON leading into the 50 year celebration.
Due to time constraints disciples’ readings of the offerings were shortened and it was a very emotional Das Avatar who read his offering.
A video clip of the Lost village was played whilst the bhoga offering was done. This was followed by ecstatic kirtana led by Das Avatar Prabhu and the Krsna Balaram Youth Group Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the most sumptuous Ekadasi feast.It was finally at 10pm that the guests reluctantly left a rather emotional but amazingly sweet Vyasa Puja.

A heartfelt thank you to all those who made this first public Vyasa Puja a resounding success:
Das Avatar Dasa – introduction to Guru Maharaja
Mayuri Gaurangi Maharaj – meaning of Vyasa Puja
Sadhana Sakti Devi Dasi – Guru Maharaja’s offering to Srila Prabhupada, Vote of Thanks
Caitanya Swarup Dasa – Bhoga offering.
HG Sveta Dvip Prabhu. – Aarti
Das Avatar and Krishna Balarama Youth Group – Kirtana
HG Nanda Kumar Prabhu and HG Sveta Dvip Prabhu – Feeding of cake to Gurudev
HG Guru Kripa Prabhu – Ekadasi feast
Janaki Devi Dasi – Ekadasi cake, Temple decor and garlands
Bhakta Thiru – Video and photography

Link for the video https://youtu.be/kj_kwpn_eBk

Your servants,
Gauteng Lok- Disciples

Video https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#search/vyasa+puja/1564789cc8f8ccd8?projector=1




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