Chicago IL: September 20, 2015 was one of the most auspicious days at Chinmaya Mission Chicago! May 8, 2015-May 8, 2016 marks the birth centenary year of Pujya Gurudev, Swami Chinmayanada. While celebrating the life of the spiritual master who spearheaded a global Hindu spiritual and cultural renaissance, “Jyoti Yatra” is a traveling unbroken flow of light in the form of an oil lamp. The light is traveling throughout India and one in the United States of America, symbolizing the light of spiritual knowledge that Swami Chinmayananda spread across the world.
The Jyoti arrived at Chinmaya Mission Chicago from Chinmaya Omkara – Northwest Indiana, accompanied by a bus full of devotees. Swami Sharanananda and Acharya Dhiren Khatri from Chinmaya Mission Chicago held the Jyoti as it was led in a procession with reverence and celebration accompanied by Swami Ramakrishnananda from India, Acharyas Jetindra and Swapna Nayar from the Yamunotri Center of CMC and Acharya Sachin from Kitchner, Ontario. Bala Vihar children were lined all along Badri walkway with Om flags. Children and adults performed Lezim dance and Raas Leela while taking the Jyoti into the ashram with chants, bhajans and firecrackers. After crossing the threshold of the ashram the Jyoti was received with Purna Kumbha, a traditional expression of welcome with chanting from the Vedas.
In the shrine the idol of Lord Badri Narayan dressed in finery and fragrance of fresh flowers smiled in anticipated welcome. An elaborate Paduka puja was offered – worship of the feet of the Guru, signifying the worship of the spiritual knowledge on which the Guru stands. During the puja the children led the chanting of 108 names of Pujya Gurudev and offered a beautiful bhajan composed by Swami Tejomayananda and the adults offered an auspicious dance from Kerala. Over 400 children and adults attended the event.
The inspiration and the energy of the day were remarkable; celebrating the Guru who sacrificed everything to spread the message of Bhagawad Geeta and the Upanishads for the wellbeing of humanity. The Jyoti will reside at CMC – Badri through October 30 and will be taken to Chinmaya Mission Minneapolis on October 31, 2015.