ISKCON Mysuru devotees celebrated Pannihati Chida Dahi Utsava this year at the holy place of Sathyagala, near Kollegal on Monday, 25th June, 2018. More than 500 devotees travelling in the more than 8 buses from ISKCON, Mysuru reached Sathyagala at 11AM. Srila Prabhupada and Sri Sri Gaura Nitai where carried in a Pallaki towards the banks of the River Kaveri for the Theppotsava. After the Theppotsava, the Deities were given a holy dip in the sacred water of River Kaveri. The Deities along with devotees then proceeded towards the Sri Kote Varadaraja Swamy temple where a grand abhishekam was arranged for Sri Sri Gaura Nitai. Following the Abhishekam a discourse was given by H G Rasika Shekara Prabhu narrating the glorious pastime of Raghunath Dasa Goswami organizing Pannihati Chida Dahi Utsav on the Banks of River Ganges 500 years back. Sri Sri Gaura Nitai where offered a variety of preparations made out of Chidha and other delicacies, which was later distributed to devotees, who honored Maha Prasadam to their hearts content.
In the afternoon all the devotees visited the famous temples of Lord Ranganath in Madhyaranga and Sri Sri Lakshmi Narasimha in Marenahalli. By evening all the devotees headed back to ISKCON, Mysuru relishing a day long spiritually enlivening experience and eagerly waiting for their next annual day out with the Lord.
Glimpses of Pannihati Chida Dahi Utsav 2018 @ Sathyagala, Kollegala
Go Puja & Govardhana Puja festival was celebrated on Friday, 20th October. The festival started 6 pm with Tulasi puja followed by Go puja (worship of the cows), Govardhana Puja (worship of Govardhana hill) and Deepotsava. Devotees were spell bound by looking at the magnificent Govardhana Hill made with 220 Kgs. of delicious Cake. Various kinds of food items including rice preparations, sweets & savories were also prepared and offered to Lord Krishna on the auspicious day.
This festival is celebrated in commemoration of the fascinating pastime of Lord Krishna’s lifting the Govardhana hill, when angry Indra sent torrents of rain accompanied by showers of ice blocks and high wind to disturb the residents of Vrindavana. Lord Krishna immediately took compassion upon the residents of Vrindavana and protected them by picking up the Govardhana Hill, just as a child picks up a mushroom.
Hundreds of devotees thronged the temple to witness this grand celebration and cherished the opportunity of offering a ghee lamp to Lord Krishna individually, on account of Karthika Deepotsava and received the blessings of the Lord.
More than 10000 devotees participatE in the South Indian biggest Ravan Dahan organised by ISKCON, Jayanagar as part of its Annual Dasara festival celebrations commemorating the pastime of the victory of Lord Rama over the evil King Ravana on Saturday, 30th Sept.
While speaking on the subject “Krishna Bhakti : Beyond good and evil”, Sriman Madhu Pandit Das, President of ISKCON Bangalore and Chairman of Akshaya Patra Foundation said that “There is always a war within our own heart, between good and evil. The destruction of Ravana by Lord Rama represents the destruction of evil within oneself and in the society at large. By adopting the process of chanting of the Holy name of the Lord one can destroy the evil within in the form of lust, anger, greed, and pride”. Artists from Mudrika Foundation for Indian Performing Arts, Bengaluru performed “Raghuvamsha Charita” – a dance drama depicting the significant pastimes of Lord Ramachandra as described by Maharaja Swati Thirunal in his beautiful kriti, ‘Bhavayami Raghu Ramam’. Followed by this was the eye captivating vista of Their Lordships Sri Krishna & Balarama adorned as Sri Rama & Lakshmana going on a joyous ride on the “Gaja Vahana” while the devotees enjoyed pulling the chariot singing Hare Krishna Mantra.
The burning of 60 ft. high effigies of Ravana, Kumbhakarana and Meghanad marking the victory of Lord Rama over Rakshasa Ravana and also to indicate the victory of truth over evil was a spectacular excitement for the devotees. The crowd gathered in thousands displayed loud exultations as the effigies burnt down to the sound of firecrackers.
Balaram Jayanthi was celebrated on Monday, 7th August. Sri Sri KRISHNA BALARAM were adorned with new set of white dresses to match the theme of Purnima. Evening program began at 6:00 p.m with Tulasi Puja, Sandhya Aarti followed by a grand 64 Kalasha abhishekam to the utsava Deities of Krishna and Balarama. Abhishekam included panchamrita snana (milk, yoghurt, ghee, honey, and sweet water), panchagavya snana, varieties of fruits juices and milk shakes, aushadi snana (herbs) and tender coconut water.
A number of varieties of arati was offered with accompaniment of Sankirtan. While the sanctified water from the 64 Kalasha was offered, Purusha Sukta was chanted. Abhishekam ended with the showering of multitude of flowers. A special video presentation on the pastimes and various expansions of Lord Balaram was shown. Pushparachana was performed with the chanting of Balarama Ashtotra. Celebrations ended with more than 500 devotees honouring Maha Prasadam.
SHILANYAS, foundation stone for the Nava Brindavan Dham, ISKCON Mysuru Cultural Centre was laid by Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Rudabhai Vala on April 2. Designed in neo-classical style, the 60 meter structure of the temple will integrate the old charm of Hoysala architecture and ultra-modern hi-tech architectural forms, creating an exotic blend of ethnicity and abstractness.
Speaking on this historic event, His Excellency mentioned that “in these days of degrading values, the time tested support of culture and heritage are the recourse for the peaceful existence of humanity. Thus it is of utmost importance that ISKCON has conceived to present this centre as a cultural project for the re-spiritualisation of the entire human society.” Further he added that “the absence of this essential element in the modern society, has created a vacuum, a sense of dissatisfaction and unrest. People are unable to find inner fulfillment and the ever increasing need for peace and happiness. It was this condition that was rectified by the efforts of His Divine Grace A.C.Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Through his teachings Srila Prabhupada has emphasized the need of encouraging cultural as well as spiritual growth, through such centres, so that society can fulfill its urge for everlasting happiness and peace”.
Sriman Madhu Pandit Das, President of ISKCON Bangalore and Chairman of Akshaya Patra Foundation presiding the ceremony said that “Nava Vrindavan Dham will be an abode of the Lord, wherein visitors will learn to look at our heritage from a very rational and a scientific point of view. The Nava Brindavan Dham cultural center though architecturally a monument, the essence of its existence is to promote learning of Indian philosophy through scriptures like Bhagavad-gita, Bhagavatam and other Puranas and promoting traditional Indian arts, dance, music. Nava Brindavan Dham, besides being a cultural center will be hub for many more social initiatives like Akshaya Patra.”
Appealing everyone to support this great cause, he also announced on setting up free residential schools for 50000 underprivileged children all over the country, under which a school to house 2000 children will be set up in Mahadevapura, near Mysuru as yet another social initiative of ISKCON.”
PWD and Mysuru District In-charge Minister Dr.H.C. Mahadevappa, Her Highness Dr. Pramoda Devi Wadiyar, MLA M.K. Somashekar, Mayor M.J. Ravi Kumar, ISKCON Hubballi President Rajiv Lochan Das, President of Hare Krishna Movement Chennai, Stoka Krishna Dasa and ISKCON Mysuru President Jai Chaitanya Dasa were present.
After the foundation laying ceremony, an enthralling music performance “Krishnanjali” was rendered by Vijay Yesudas, son of legendary singer K.J. Yesudas.
vinäçäya ca duñkåtäm
sambhavämi yuge yuge
“In order to deliver the pious and to annihilate the miscreants, as well as to reestablish the principles of religion, I advent Myself millennium after millennium”.
Ages ago, Lord Krishna advented in the form of half-lion half-man incarnation Lord Narasimha to protect His devotee Prahlad from his demoniac father Hiranyakashipu. Because of performing severe austerities, Hiranyakashipu had received a special benediction from Lord Brahma that he could not be killed by any human being, demigod or animal or any other entities; he could not be killed by any kind of weapons, neither during day nor night. So, the Lord appeared in half-man half-lion form and killed him with His nails at twilight, thus satisfying all the conditions. Narasimhadeva appeared at dusk on the Shukla Chaturdashi (fourteenth day of the bright fortnight) in the month of Vaishakha.
Celebrations at ISKCON, Mysore for Sri Narasimha Jayanthi begin in the evening at 6pm onwards. The programme starts with Narasimah Homa followed by an elaborate abhishekam to the Deities of Sri Sri Lakshmi Narasimha. During the abhisheka, panchagavya, panchamrita, sacred water, herbal water, sandal water, fruit juices, and water mixed with turmeric are poured on the Lord for His pleasure. A Video presentation based on the teachings of Srila Prabhupada, depicting the pastimes of Lord Narasimha and various holy temples of Lord Narasimha is played. The programme ends with singing of the special song on Lord Narasimha Çré Nåsimha Añöottara Çata Näma Stotram and arati with Sankirtan.
Gaura Purnima, 531st birth anniversary of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was celebrated on Sunday, 12th March. Commemorating the festival, devotees went on Nagar Sankirtan, chanting holy names of Lord Krishna, in the early morning hours at 6:30 a.m.
The evening festival started at 6 pm with Tulasi Puja followed by an elaborate Abhisheka (bathing ceremony) of the Deities of GauraNitai (Lord Chaitanya and His associate Nityananda) along with Arati & Sankirtan. The special feature of the festival was a play performed by a group of young students with the title “Bhakta Vatsala Chaitanya” – based on the pastimes performed by Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu during His South Indian Tour. The drama depicted on how Lord Chaitanya, who is the most munificent incarnation of Lord Krishna, made even the animals in Jarikhand forest to chant the holy names of Lord. Further, the drama highlighted the episodes of Lord Chaitanya protecting His devotee Kala Krishnadasa, who was allured by a class of nomadic people called Bhattaharis. Drama also displayed on Lord Chaitanya protecting the devotion of His devotee Ramadasa Vipra, by presenting the evidence from Kurma Purana that Ravana kidnapped only the Maya Sita and the real Mother Sita was protected by Agnideva, who was returned to Lord Ramachandra carefully after killing of Ravana during Agnipariksha. The most confidential form of Lord Chaitanya, who is Krishna Himself in the mood of Srimati Radharani which was displayed to Ramananda Raya was also depicted.
Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu advocated a universal religion for everyone, a scientific process of spiritual awakening and gave an opportunity for spiritual emancipation to all regardless of religion, caste, creed or colour. He inaugurated the Sankirtana movement – the congregational chanting of the Holy Name of Krishna in the form of the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra – Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.
Five hundred years ago, He predicted that the chanting of Lord Krishna’s Holy Names would spread throughout the world. This prophecy was fulfilled by His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, the Founder-Acharya of ISKCON and the eleventh in the disciplic succession (parampara) of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.