2 to 6:
10 to 12:
14 to 15:
Atlanta, Jackson (Mississippi)
Jackson, Perry (Georgia)
Perry, Charlotte (North Carolina)
- 2 August 2000:
(V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 3) Wednesday, Atlanta: Karyakar Din
- In the evening assembly, on
behalf of the Mayor and citizens of Atlanta, Mr. Greg Pridgeon
- Deputy Chief of Staff, honored Swamishri with the 'Dream
Realized Award'. The award is presented to unique personalities
in memory of Dr. Martin Luther King.
- As part of the Karyakar Din
program, a drama presentation showed that an ideal karyakar
(volunteer) should have an organized and spotless life;
and should sacrifice his mind, body and wealth in the service
In his blessings Swamishri emphasized the importance of
God's infinite strength: "One who sets out to serve
faces obstacles and difficulties. But if one is grounded
in Dharma (morality) and God's strength then one will achieve
success. The Pandavas had nothing, whereas the Kauravas
had a massive army of mighty warriors. But the Pandavas
had the strength of Bhagwan Krishna and that is why they
won. Similarly, if we rely on God's strength then we will
attain success in our works."
- 3 August 2000:
(V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 4) Thursday, Atlanta
In the evening assembly,
Swamishri was honored from the Governor of Atlanta's office
and also offered the 'Key to the City of Clarkstown' by Mayor
George Baldesare of Clarkstown.
- 4 August 2000:
(V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 5) Friday, Atlanta: Kishore Din
- The special Kishore Day program
in the evening saw a dramatic presentation on world problems
by the kishores. A representative of WHO talked about the
global problems of health and disease. A kishore representing
UNICEF talked on the negligence of parents in rearing their
children as the root cause of world problems. And the Green
Peace Movement expressed its frustration with the environmental
crisis. A scientist voiced his plans to set up a space colony
to escape our problem-filled world. Finally, as the panacea
of all ills, a representative of the BAPS explained the
power of Satsang as the answer to all problems...
- Mr. Terrell Slayton, Assistant
Secretary of Georgia State, presented Swamishri with a citation
of Georgia's Goodwill Ambassador and Honorary Citizen.
- The kishores and kishoris
honored Lord Harikrishna Maharaj.
- 5 August 2000:
(V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 6) Saturday, Atlanta
At 6.25pm Swamishri
addressed an assembly of doctors offering honorary services
in the mandir, "Our shastras say that one who has self-control
suffers less diseases. Because when man does not exercise any
discipline in eating, drinking, looking, hearing, etc. he invites
disease. And the unseen elements (of anger, jealousy, greed,
lust) within are more responsible for his sufferings. They cannot
be detected by a stethoscope. The shastras prescribe refuge
in God as the only cure. The more self-control one has the more
peace and happiness one will have in life. And along with self-control
one should also associate with a holy sadhu (sant samagam).
Prayers too have cured chronic diseases ..."
- 6 August 2000:
(V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 7) Sunday, Atlanta
11.05 am Swamishri performed the maha-puja as part of the
'Bhumi-Pujan' ceremony for the new mandir site. More than
300 devotees participated in the maha-puja.
- Lord Harikrishna Maharaj
was honored by the devotees during the evening assembly.
- 8 August
2000: (V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 9, Tuesday, Jackson (Mississippi)
Swamishri performed the murti-pratistha
of the marble murtis of Shri Akshar Purushottam, Shri Radha
Krishna Dev, Shri Hari Krishna Maharaj, Shri Ganapatiji &
Guru Parampara (canvas).
In the evening assembly the Mayor
of Jackson city, Mr.Harvey Johnson Jr., presented Swamishri with
the 'Key to the City'. After Swamishri's blessings, the devotees
honored Lord Harikrishna Maharaj.
- 9 August
2000: (V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 10) Wednesday, Perry (
Georgia) : Shibir
At 12.25pm Swamishri
arrived for the 4-day Shibir in Perry, At 6.00 p.m. Swamishri
lighted the lamp and inaugurated the Shibir with a registration
of 1800 Bal-Balika and Kishore-Kishori participants. A welcome
dance was performed and an ID Card was placed around Thakorji
and Swamishri. A drama on, 'Haridas' showed the tolerance of
the paramhansas in the face of physical torture and persecution.
Swamishri talked about the glory and supremity of Shriji Maharaj.
- 10 August 20000:
(V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 11) Thursday, Perry: Shibir
- After puja, Swamishri inaugurated
an exhibition on the subject of 'Mandir' prepared by kishoris
of Houston and Chicago and another on 'Swaminarayan Mahamantra'
by kishoris of New Jersey and Los Angeles.
Swamishri wrote the Swaminarayan Mahamantra five times on
a display board. The kishores played an exciting Generation
Game with Swamishri as the judge, followed by a question-answer
session with Swamishri.
- At 11.15 a.m. Swamishri went
to the Bal Shibir and participated in Ruchi Quiz. Swamishri
blessed the session through a question-answer session.
- In the evening assembly of
the Shibir the Fuldol festival was celebrated to enlighten
and offer an experience to the participating children and
teenagers. The backdrop and stage arrangements were setup
to create an ambience of the Festival of Colors. The entire
day's theme focused on the significance and spirit of the
Fuldol Festival. The festival's theme prayer of 'Maha Balvant
Maya Tamari...' was reflected in the speeches and blessings
Finally, Swamishri worshipped and sprayed colored water
on Thakorji and then sprayed the holy colored water on the
kishores and balaks.
August (V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud 12) Friday, Perry: Shibir
- At 11.10 a.m. Swamishri encouraged
the welcoming dance by balaks by clapping amidst them. Swamishri
then conducted the game 'Shriji Says' and entertained and
enlightened the balaks. In his blessings Swamishri narrated
the story of 'Lindiyo' - the lion who had turned meek in
a sheep's flock.
- The evening celebration of
'Shakotsav' was focussed on 'Aharshuddhi' - purity of diet,
ie on vegetarianism. The agenda of speeches and blessings
by Swamishri enlightened and consolidated this important
theme. The Festival was crowned with servings of 'khichadi'
that was blessed by Swamishri while it was being prepared
in the afternoon. All the Shibir participants dined with
- 12 August
2000 (V.S. 2056, Shravan Sud ) Perry: Shibir, Charlotte
- In Swamishri's morning puja,
kishores of Charlotte stayed up all night to prepare an
exquisite stage backdrop. The murti of Lord Swaminarayan
was placed on a huge decorated paper elephant beneath a
- During the morning session
in the Bal Shibir, Swamishri watched the balaks play 'Hot
Potato' - passing the beach-ball till the music stopped.
The balak left with the ball would go before Swamishri and
take a vow on the chit that Swamishri picked out from a
bowl. Then a question-answer session was held with Swamishri.
- At 11.10 a.m. Swamishri went
to the Kishore Shibir. A programme of kirtan bhakti was
arranged. As Swamishri chose the bhajans on a computer screen
the sadhus sang them. The kirtan bhakti's tempo rose. The
kishores broke out dancing and at one point Swamishri stood
amidst them clapping and engaging in a few light steps.
The kishores were elated and everyone experienced joy during
these divine moments. Thereafter a question-answer session
was arranged with Swamishri. During his blessings, Swamishri
spoke, ' Aapane to
thea ...a...a...ath, Akshardham ma javu chhe mate kantalo
lavavo nahi' (we have to go a...a...all the way to Akshardham
...) in a unique long style that left a memorable impression
among the Kishores and Kishoris.
- In the evening Swamishri sanctified
a piece of land donated for the building of a mandir by
Maheshbhai Desai. Swamishri performed the Bhumi-pujan and
arti of the new land.
- The main focus of the evening
assembly was the Raksha Bandhan festival - to imbibe and
foster family values. In his blessings, Swamishri said,"
It is God who ultimately protects us. In this world, someone
may protect our money or whatever, but God protects us in
such a way that we never have to go through the cycles of
birth and death...". Then Swamishri spoke a couple
of sentences in English, " All of you are God's children.
All of you stay happy."
- Swamishri tied a Rakhadi on
Thakorji and kishores tied the holy thread (nada chhadi)
on each others wrists and then tied the two-feet pieces
of thin colourful rope with each others. The two ends were
then tied to a long string of nada chhadi that was given
to Swamishri. During this blessings, Swamishri explained
the importance of Raksha Bandhan and stressed on family
- After the evening supper
a special session to celebrate Diwali - the Festival of
Lights was held. Swamishri and all the shibirites performed
arti and then watched a spectacular fireworks display.
- 13 August
2000 (V.S. 2056 Shravan Sud 13) Sunday, Perry, Charlotte
- After the morning puja Swamishri
celebrated the Makar Sankranti Joli Utsav. Swamishri explained
the significance of the festival as a day on which householders,
to earn merits, reverently offer charity to the sadhus and
sanyasis. Swamishri then spoke out the call for charity
uttered by sadhus, - 'Narayan Hare Sacchidanand Prabho'
The kishores clapped in appreciation of Swamishri's crisp,
sweet voice. At 10.30 a.m. Swamishri depated from Perry
and lauded at Charlotte at 11.30 a.m.
- In the evening assembly at
Charlotte, Swamishri was welcomed by the Mayor of Matthews
town, Mr.Lee Myers. He presented the 'Key to the City' to
Swamishri and requested him to visit the city again and
August 2000 (V.S. 2056 Shravan Sud 14) Monday, Charlotte
In the evening
assembly Lord Harikrishna Maharaj was honored by the devotees.
- 15 August
2000 (V.S. 2056 Shravan Sud 15) Tuesday, Charlotte: Raksha Bandhan,
Thakorji and the throne were decorated
with the tricolors of the Indian Flag and Rakhadis. After puja
Swamishri hoisted the Indian flag and Police Commissioner Mr.Hunter
hoisted the American flag. In the evening assembly children
performed a 'Kucch Geet' (march). Swamishri explained the importance
of Raksha Bandhan in his blessings. Thereafter the sadhus tied
Rakhadis on the devotees.