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Los Angeles, Nov. 11, 2008
By Dilip Butani

Nearly 1,500 visitors attended the third USA Kumbha Mela 2008 and one-year anniversary celebration of the Vedic Temple in Montclair, California. It was an amazing day that brought together diverse people and cultures in blissful celebration. The Montclair City Council offered a message of congratulations and expressed enthusiasm about future partnerships between the two organizations in the upcoming year.

The morning began with Maha-Abishekam. It was awe-inspiring to watch Swamis and temple priests of the Nithyananda Order from around the world simultaneously perform the bathing ritual for the major deities of the temple. Each of the nearly one hundred fifty deities received abishekam. It was an overwhelming sight to view the grandeur of the moorties revealed in full Alankar and flower decorations lovingly prepared by temple volunteers.

Ma Maneesha, Yoga Mahacharya from India, with over 30 years experience teaching Yoga, spoke on the deeper truths of Yoga. Based upon the teachings of Patanjali, Nithya Yoga teaches us to set an intention of blissfully moving through all the activities of one’s day. In another session, she presented a wonderful talk on the finer points and practical tips of Ayurvedic living and Sattvic cooking that promote healthy living.

‘Temples - Bridging the Generations’ was the topic for a lively panel discussion with Mr. Martyn Williams, Sri Nithya Medhananda Swami, Ma Maneesha, and Ananda Samaji volunteer, Hiten Dalal. The Vedic Temple is a profound energy field that causes immediate and obvious positive effects on people’s energies. Using the inner science of transformation, the rituals beautifully integrate us by relaxing the mind and elevating our consciousness in bliss. This profound truth was clearly demonstrated throughout the day with the many temple rituals.

Temple pujacharya, Bhaktapriyananda Maharaj also discussed the significance and benefit of spending time in the energy field of the temple and answered questions from the audience.

Representatives from the Nithyananda Vedic Temples of North America participated in the third annual grand USA Kumbha Mela 2008 events to promote world peace. They brought deities from their Vedic Temples in Oklahoma, Vancouver, Seattle, San Jose, and Ohio to join the Montclair temple deities in joyous procession around the temple grounds. Aikyananda Maharaj conducted the immersion of deities into the water of twenty-one holy rivers of India and blessed the gathering with sprinkling from the energized waters.

Ganga Arathi followed the Kumbha Mela 2008. This is an offering of light to Mother Ganga, Lord Shiva, who holds Her in His divine head and to all the other deities gathered in the Ananda Sabha hall for the events.

The pinnacle of the anniversary celebration was Maha Arathi conducted by three Nithyananda priests. The temple was packed with visitors and charged with intense healing energy. Everyone commented on how beautiful it was be included in such a visually and spiritually uplifting event.

Throughout the weekend guests enjoyed several professional cultural performances by Nithyananda volunteers. Palomi Pundit presented Bharat Natyam Dance, Babu Parameshwaran’s School offered vocals, as did Ma Sreemati. Children performed Kathak Dance and John Villalobos shared guitar performance. Maha Prasad was available to over fifteen hundred people who visited throughout the day.

The local area Blood Bank was very pleased with the turnout of blood donors from the Nithyananda community. Attendees really enjoyed the booths with Vedic Astrology, Nithyananda Sacred Arts, Ayurvedic Consultations and beautiful henna tattoos.

A major highlight of the festivities was the video recorded message from the founder of the Vedic Temple, Paramahamsa Nithyananda from Bidadi Ashram in Bangalore, India.
He discussed the spiritual significance of Kumbha Mela and how it generates positive peaceful energy and raises the global collective consciousness towards peace.

During his comments, Swamiji expressed his appreciation to the all-volunteer team of Ashramites, Ananda Samajis, Ananda Sevaks and Devotees involved in the Vedic Temple.

Swamiji discussed some of the major accomplishments in this first year, including over 40,000 visitors to the temple, training of fifty pujacharyas in the rituals of the Vedic tradition, Life Bliss Teacher’s Trainings, meals for over 100,000 people, health camps and the numerous classes in meditation and life solutions presented to schools, community organizations and individuals community wide.

The volunteers’ presence added a special quality to the activities and they are sure to add a wonderful dimension the fun and festivities that the next year will bring. There are many large and small ways to serve and grow within the Vedic Temple community.

The Vedic Temple is an inner science laboratory charged with amazing spiritual energy, helping people live creative, successful and blissful lives. It is a gift from the divine vision of Paramahamsa Nithyananda.




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