The Gita Jayanti Festival of 2008 marks the 8th successive year of recitation in Malaysia, initiated by HH Prabhu Dina Anukampana das. On 9th of December, the marathon of Bhagavad Gita (complete recital of the whole texts) took place concurrently in many parts of the world by members of ISKCON (International Society for Krsna Consciousness) group and is usually opened to the public. HH Dina Dass who resides in the holy kshetra of Vrindavana also recited the Srimad Bhagavad Gita at another holy kshetra, Thirupathy for Lord Balaji.
Photo left: The body changes, but the soul remains the same.
Bhagavad-gita 2.13 The many, many frames on a reel of movie film, when seen consecutively, appear as one picture on the screen, although there are actually many different pictures. Similiarly, we see a man as localized (above), but actually his body is changing at every second. All this is happening without the notice of the viewer. However the soul within the heart (seen as a sparkling star) does not change; he remains eternally the same.
The Bhagavad Gita.
The Srimad Bhagavad Gita, originally written in Sanskrit, is a unique philosophical piece of spiritual literature which contains 700 verses in 18 chapters. It was compiled and arranged by the great Sage Veda Vyasa. The Gita is the central portion of the great epic Mahabaratam. It is in the form of dialogue between Bhagavan Sri Krishna and Arjuna. "Bhagavad" means the Supreme Being Sri Krishna and "Gita" means song. Thus, Bhagavad Gita means the celestial song. Its main theme is the upliftment of man both spiritually and materially.
The Gita enlightens the four Partharthas, Aram, Perul, Inbam and Veedu. They are classified in the Gita as Karma yoga, Dhyana yoga, Bhakthi yoga and Gnana yoga. Karma yoga or the yoga of right action; Dhyana yoga or the yoga of meditation; Bhakthi yoga or the yoga of devotion and finally Gnana yoga or the yoga of contemplation and the realization of the SELF.
"Thirukkural" is a text that that conveys words of wisdom from a Saint to mankind. "Thiruvachakam", is a book that conveys of a Realised Soul's communication with the divine forces. In the Bhagavad Gita, it contains the message of the divine to mankind on right and wrong actions and the ways to draw closer to divinity.
In Gita, the character of "Arjuna" is actually the personification of the entire human beings. God reaches out to mankind but man the limited being cannot understand it and HIS divine message. There is divinity within man. God speaks to man so that he can get rid off his Asuric or negative tendencies, avoid Tamasic gunas (inert, ignorant or lazy nature), Rajasic gunas (passion, greed) and attain Satvic nature (purity, goodness) and seek the Truth and realize God.
Photo left: RM Ravichandar, a disciple of HH Dina Dass.
However, in a little district known as Jawi, in the mainland at South of Penang, Malaysia, the festival concluded a day earlier in a small temple. A day which happens to coincide with the Muslim Pilgrimage Festival where cows are slaughtered which is termed by the local Malays as "Korban" (sacrifice). The chief organiser of the function, Mr. RM Ravichandar decided thus is because he says, "Today, tens of thousands of cows are being slaughtered right now as I speak to celebrate the Muslim festival. Cows are a sacred being next to our maternal mothers as we do feed from their milk & feed their milk to our offsprings. Cries of the cows are heard in all parts of this country as they are slowly killed by slitting the neck and Quranic verses are read in the process of killing the cow. This mass killing carries bad vibrations and are not good for the country therefore being the reason why I intended to carry out the Gita recital today".
Photos of Gita Jayanti in progress on 8th December.
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