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23 December 2001, Sunday, St. Louis, MO

Shree Swaminarayan Mandir celebrated the 81st Birthday of H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj. Kishori mandal decorated the entire Mandir. 81 candles were used in the decoration. The program was started with a multimedia presentation welcoming Swamishree. After lighting a ceremonial candle, the bal and kishore mandal sang prayers glorifying God and God realized Saint.

Senior devotees gave speeches. Their speeches exemplified the work of Swamishri towards the betterment of mankind, and his uniqueness. Swamishree’s uniqueness is not due to the fact that he has got awards for buildings most temples, or being a Guru for the past 30 years, or being recognized in the Guinness book of world records as one of the most influential person, but due to what he is doing for mankind. Even at the age of 81, in spite of numerous health problems, he has only one motto “In the joys of others, lies our own”. Thus he continues to travel from tribal huts to palaces of kings. At the end of the program everyone took part in Samuh Aarti that was followed by Mahaprasad.

Kirtan by Yuvak Mandal

Kirtan by Bal Mandal

Kirtan by Bal mandal


Raas: “Kode Kode Vadhavie Aaj…”, by  Yuvak mandal

23 December 2001, Sunday, Washington DC

H.D.H. Pujya Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 81st Birthday samaiyo was celebrated with a grand assembly of haribhaktas. The theme of the samaiyo was, ‘His Vision, Our Mission – The Divine Wishes of Swamishree’. The morning began with a special Mahapuja in which record number of people, participated. Balaks and kishores performed in majority of the evening program. The highlight of the night was a wonderful 30-minute drama that depicted the importance of bal sanskar, and the role satsang plays in everyday lives of people. The program also included a raas, “Kode Kode Vadhavie Aaj…”, by the yuvak mandal, and a kirtan aaradhna by the kishore mandal. The kishori mandal decorated the Mandir with pictorial displays of H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s daily activities, such as nitya puja, murti pratistha, vicharan, afternoon walk, and dinner. The mahila mandal prepared 2 cakes, one that was 81 inches long, and another that was a ‘Train to Akshardham’. Everyone enjoyed this samaiyo together, and were able delve a great deal deeper into many facets of Swamishree’s life.

23 December 2001, Sunday, Chicago, IL

Swaminarayan Mandir Chicago celebrated the 81st birthday of, H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj with grandeur and excitement. Devotees and guests were in attendance at the auspicious celebrations, which took place at the Shree Swaminarayan Haveli in Chicago. A magnificent cultural program took place between 4 and 7 pm, which depicted the various exceptional qualities and strengths of Guru Pramukh Swami Maharaj.

Highlights of the program included a variety of devotional bhajans extolling the greatness of Guru Pramukh Swami Maharaj as well as offering praise and happy well wishes for his birthday. A multimedia presentation of his qualities, his spiritual up liftmen to and for society, and his tremendous offering of seva and service to society was also illustrated on wide screens. A number of skits and plays were also performed by the various volunteers and devotees of Pramukh Swami Maharaj to depict the commitment, dedication, and love he showers upon people and society, whether it be threw the hundreds of letters he replies to, people's problems he listens to and solves, or by the mere touch of his hand and offering of support and love he graciously offers to one and all.

The night of celebrations was full of enthusiasm and excitement. Honored and invited guests felt the same warmth and love as they took part in the celebrations and commented on the glorious attributes and qualities of such a divine, humble, caring, and loving man such as Pramukh Swami Maharaj. The festivities ended with Arti offered to the Lord and Mahaprasad following thereafter.

Murtis of Chicago Mandir

Kirtan gaan


Atlanta bal mandal celebrated whole samaiyo first time: Dance

Atlanta bal mandal celebrated whole samaiyo first time: Kirtan

Atlanta bal mandal celebrated whole samaiyo first time: Speeches

23 December 2001, Sunday, Atlanta, GA

Shree Swaminarayan Mandir, ATLANTA celebrated H.D.H Pramuk Swami Maharaj’s 81st Janma Jayanti Samaiyo on Sunday, December 23, 2001 at 3:45M to 6:30PM. People atteneded this samaiyo on a rainy day right before Christmas holidays. Atlanta bal mandal celebrated whole samaiyo first time ever. Dhoon, Prathna, Kirtan, Drama, and Dance were performed by bal mandal group 0, 1, and 2. All balaks and sanchalaks stayed over at mandir from last three weekends to do practice for samaiyo. Pankajbhai of decoration department guided all balak and balika to do decoration and exhibition. Stage was decorated with balloon arches. Two sides of the mandir hall was decorated with balloons, streamers, P.bapa’s prasang and photographs. Shrine was decorated with P.Bapa’s suvakyo, books, toys and Cakes.
Samaiyo started with Dhoon and Prarthana, Balaks presented speeches on swamibapa’s panch vartaman (Nishehi, Nirmani, Nirloghi, Nishkami and Niswadi) two of which ere done in Gujarati. During the samaiyo, Bal group 0/1 carried Pujya Bapa’s savari on decorated Rath from entrance to the decorated stage with “valam vadhamana…” kirtan playing in background. Bal1 also performed a dance on “Aava…swami avya re avya….” Kirtan. The last item of samaiyo was SwamiBapa’s Janma jayanti –2001 celebrations video from Sankri. After video, everybody participated in “Samuh Aarti” and proceeded for Mahaprasad.

23 December 2001, Sunday, Birmingham, AL

Birmingham satsang mandal celebrated H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 81st birthday as Pramukh Jayanti Samaiyo on Sunday, December 23, 2001. A three hour program included performances by Bal, Kishore and Yuvak mandals. Following are the program highlights, Dance by Bal mandal on “khabar chhe amne Shantilal ne…” kirtan from “Sant Param Hitkari”, Four skits including Swamishree’s Grihtyag, Diksha and Seva were performed by Kishore and Yuvak mandals. A speech from a kishore on Swamishree’s childhood in English. Swamishree’s blessing from Sankari Janma Jayanti Mahotsav. After Samaiyo, the chief guest of sabha, Shri Pujabhai M. Patel achieved Best teacher Award from President of India 1986, was honour by Birmingham Satsang Mandal. The Samaiyo ended at 6:30 with Samuh Aarti followed by Mahaprasad. Parking and sabha vyavastha were organized by Yuvak and Vadil mandal. Decoration, audio-video seva were organized by Kishore mandal.

Stage Decoration


Bhajan by kishores



23 December 2001, Sunday, Cleveland, OH

Devotees attended H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s 81st Janma Jayanti celebrations that were held on Sunday December 23, 2001 from 3:00 PM to 6:00 PM at the BAPS Shree Swaminarayan Mandir in Brunswick (Cleveland), Ohio. The program was started with a traditional Stuti (with translations), dhoon, and prarthana by Bal and Kishore Mandals. This was followed by Kirtans, and speeches about H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj; his childhood, the story of his diksha, and his experiences with children were highlighted. These speeches were presented by balaks and kishores. A skit, “Samsha Prashna” (Samsha Prashna means question-answer with action not words) was performed by the Bal Mandal, and a folk-dance was performed by the Kishore Mandal. A video clip was shown from the celebration of Swamishree’s Janma Jayanti celebrations at Sankari in Gujarat, India that took place on the same day.
Various videos highlighted H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s social work, how he has helped people overcome bad habits, and how he always remembers God. Also, the Sanstha’s video on the kirtan “Dhanya Dhanya eh Sant Sujaan ne” was shown. Other presentations provided an update on BAPS Care International’s India Earthquake Relief efforts and announced the launch of the SAT / ACT classes at our BAPS Mandir. Kishores were the Masters of Ceremonies. An exhibition put together by the Bal/Balika and Kishore/Kishori Mandals was placed in the lobby of the mandir. The theme of the exhibition was “Ghanu Jevo Ho Jivan Adhar”.
The major sponsors of this program were individually recognized and all the sponsors as well as attendees performed the Aarti which looked spectacular in the dimmed lighting of the prayer hall. In the end everyone had Mahaprasad prepared with enthusiasm by the Mahila Mandal, and many people happily recounted their personal experiences with H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj and wished a long happy life for him.

23 December 2001, Sunday, Los Angeles, CA

Devotees jubilantly celebrated the birthday of H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj on Sunday, December 23 2001, at the Swaminarayan Hindu Temple in Whittier, CA. The Kishore Mandal organized the entire program and the Kishori Mandal was in charge of all the decorations. The program started with dhoon and prarthana, followed by devotional kirtans glorifying Lord Swaminarayan and H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj. A drama depicting the importance of making donations was performed. The festivities came to a close with aarti followed by Maha prasad. BAPS Medical Services held their Annual Blood drive on this day, in which people participated to donate a total of 86 pints of blood.

On Saturday, December 16 2001, the Women’s wing celebrated H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj’s Birthday with grandeur. Three years old girls to seventy five years old women participated in cultural activities, offering devotion to their beloved Guru Pramukh Swami Maharaj, through dances, devotional songs and inspiring spiritual discourses.


23 December 2001, Sunday, Toronto, Canada

The Toronto BAPS celebrated Swamishri's 81st Janma Jayanti on December 23, 2001. As per tradition, once again, an annakut - a colourful medley of dishes - was the highlight of this samaiyo. Through kirtans, pravachans and video darshan, the celebration merely provided but a glimpse of Swamishri, His spiritual vision, His simplicity of life, His communion with God and His infinite other unparalleled traits. The pravachans and kirtans allowed the audience to view Swamishri from various vantage points - (ideal) sadhak, disciple, guru, visionary. exemplary leader, and the list goes on... The viewpoints presented were endless. However, Swamishri's striking humility, profound wisdom, simplicity and above all His SADHUTA beamed through all the pravchans. Finally, the samaiyo was capped with a brilliant prayer that was narrated with candour and delivered a profound message for everyone in the audience that- 'Hey Swamishri... bless us with the wisdom to experience You, the realms of your Being.'

23 December 2001, Sunday, Charlotte, NC

This Vedic hymn expressing eternal gratitude and indebtedness to the Guru, H.D.H. Pramukh Swami Maharaj respectfully known as Swamishree, resonated in the Charlotte’s temple on Sunday, December 23. The occasion was the 81st birthday celebrations of Swamishree. Two separate events were organized. The first event began at 9 AM to coincide with the live celebrations being held in Sankari, India. The highlights of this unique event held in the morning were bhajans/kirtans exalting the glory and divinity of Swamishree, several incidents (Prasang) narrated by Haribhaktas illustrated Swamishree’s unique skill in communicating with young and old alike. Another highlight was a competition quizzing the participants on their Satsang knowledge. Finally emotion, humility, and gratitude were on display in abundance as this event concluded with Haribhaktas garlanding Swamishree.

People had gathered to celebrate the evening’s event which was planned, designed, and implemented by Charlotte Mandir’s BAL MANDAL. It was their way to express their sincere thanks and heartfelt gratitude to Swamishree. The program highlights included kirtans, dance, multimedia presentation, and drama. The children’s innocence and passion were on display that enthused and excited the participants. The program concluded with a live telecast of Swamishree’s blessings. As always, the day’s feasts exceeded the participants’ expectations.

Finally, one cannot come away from these events without reflecting on Swamishree. Words fail to describe the ocean of goodness, of purity and humility, a summary of spirituality that is Swamishree. One can wonder, what is left with a person who has given his all? Nothing, nothing but himself, and that himself is everything. In Swamishree’s presence, doubts dissolve, confusions clear, hurts heal and the mind finds peace. Swamishree leads an austere life of lifetime celibacy, with an inhuman disregard for personal wealth or comfort. Representing the essence of Hinduism, his compassion for humanity, universal wisdom and striking simplicity have touched many world religious and national leaders. But most important is his quiet, undisturbed love for God that rises beyond all borders of nation, race and religion. Even after creating an international spiritual empire of hundreds of mandirs, thousands of Satsang centers and over a million followers, one always finds Swamishree engrossed in prayer, for his life is the living proof that prayers work and divine love succeeds.




2 December 2001, Sunday, Charlotte, NC

Mahila Mandal organized P.P. Swamishree’s birthday celebrations on December 2, 2001. The samaiyo, which included Mahila Mandal, Kishori Mandal, Balika Mandal, and Raleigh Mahila and Balika Mandal. Program highlights included melodious kirtans exalting the virtues and glory of Shreeji Maharaj and his chosen saint Swamishree. Bharatiya Natyam dance based on bhajan “Swagatam”, and dance by Raleigh’s and Charlotte’s Balika Mandals. Shakespeare had said, “What is in a name?” We see that Bapa’s name has reached all parts of the world. He is known for his greatness, faith, and devotion. The program concluded with offering of thanks and appreciation to Swamishree for having the opportunity to serve and honor him.

© 1999, Bochasanwasi Shree Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha, Swaminarayan Aksharpith