ASHRAYA CEREMONY HELD AT VRINDAVAN CHANDRODAYA MANDIR, VRINDAVAN
SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 14, 2016
Srila Prabhupada Ashraya Ceremony was held at Vrindavan Chandrodaya Mandir, Vrindavan on Sunday, February 14, 2016.
This is a programme under which devotees firm their commitment towards following the instructions of Srila Prabhupada in performing Bhakti Yoga in their lives.
On this occasion, 47 devotees took Ashraya (shelter) of Srila Prabhupada. Ashraya entails committing to follow certain devotional principles like chanting a fixed number of rounds daily, reading Srila Prabhupada’s books, performing worship of Lord Krishna at home among others. The candidates were mainly students from various engineering colleges across North India who have commenced practicing the principles of spiritual life under the direction of devotees of Vrindavan Chandrodaya Mandir. Besides the students there were householders from various from different backgrounds who are practicing of Krishna Consciousness principles as taught by Srila Prabhupada.
The programme was conducted in the morning at around 9:30 am at the Lecture Hall in the temple. Temple Senior Vice President His Grace Suvyakta Narasimha Das briefly interviewed the advanced Ashraya candidates. Devotees accepting Ashraya then sat in rows according to the level they had accepted.
His Grace Chanchalapati Dasa,gave a short talk on talk on the significance of Ashraya. Quoting extensively from the Bhagavad-Gita, Sriman Chanchalapati Dasa explained that the modern spiritual history of India had witnessed a diversity of views in regard to ultimate Truth owing to a multitude of mainly unauthorized proponents of Vedic knowledge. He explained that Srila Prabhupada represented an authorized lineage of self-realized sages who were presenting authentic spiritual knowledge in the true spirit in which the Lord Krishna intended it. The evidence of this assertion can be found in the global transformation that Srila Prabhupada created by bringing millions of people on all continents of the globe to appreciate and firmly follow the tenets of Lord Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.
Then the Ashraya Candidate were administered the Ashraya oaths. They offered flowers to a picture of Srila Prabhupada in the Lecture Hall and then accepted a certificate and a tilaka on their foreheads from Sriman Chanchalapati Dasa.
Guru Puja for Srila Prabhupada accompanied by Sankirtana followed this. The programme concluded with a sumptuous Prasadam feast served to all the participants.
Candidates expressed that they felt a greater seriousness towards their spiritual practices and appreciated the efforts of the temple to help them in their devotional endeavours.