Written by Swami Bhaktananda Bharati
Nine days celebrating the birth anniversary of our Beloved Master, Guru, Guide and self…. Mohanji Navavarsana 2016 Celebrations. It was a spectacular event, with so many people having such wonderful experiences. The one outcome of these nine days, was that we all bonded even closer as a family. This to me, is the sign that Mohanji was at work. Thank you Babaji for every single thing that you do for us. How can we ever express how much we appreciate what you have done. If Ananta Sesha, with his thousands of heads cannot express your glory, how can we express even 10% of what your unconditional love means to us?
Preparations for Mohanji’s birthday started many weeks ago. The first big project was to put granite asanas for each of the deities to sit on. This was important in the Ashram, because it now affords devotees to more easily do abhishekam. This was a massive undertaking. A few devotees helped in doing all the mixing of cement and laying bricks. This was extremely difficult physical labour, but we all did it with so much love. Each time our bodies hurt lifting heavy things, each time we hurt ourselves while hammering or drilling or buildings, we all saw it as a blessing from Mohanji. Even this pain was an ecstasy. Thank you to everyone who worked so hard to ensure that the granite asans were ready for the birthday program. Thank you Uncle Pran, Aunty Usha, Yugen, Vishariya, Varun, Nirvana, Nishal, Nishals mum, Roschelle, Roschelles mum (Mataji), Ajay, Aunty Nirupa, Yajna and Chalisa. Thank you to everyone who donated to the granite.
Every day leading up to the event was an amazing afternoon at the ashram. We had many pujas at the ashram.
Each day we prayed very hard for Mohanji’s health and long life. Every one of the nine days, we prepared sacred water with rare auspicious items and offered into a specially prepared kalsa with mantras of protection. This protection water was used as abhishekam water on the last day of the celebration. We also did Guru Puja and padam puja and many homas. The homas were amazing. Many deities appeared in the flames. My favourite picture is that of Lord Vishnu with Bhrama, Sesnag, and Garuda in the flames.
We did a few sevas during the Birthday celebration. We offered some nice biscuits to dogs, and spent time just playing with the dogs and cats. They loved the attention and they all just wanted love, love and more love.
We also offered a cooked meal to a home where the aged live. This was heart wrenching to me. I listened to most of the aged ladies’ and men’s stories. It was all full of pain. They all were thrown away by family, daughter in laws, sons that they once trusted. But after we started talking about Mohanji, everything changed to laughter and just utter joy and happiness. Their spirits lifted and they had such a wonderful time. The management even said that they had not seen them so happy in such a long time.
We offered beans and madumbie curry, rice, briyani, salad, pasta with soya and coconut cream, and lots of junk food hahaha. We also gifted them handtowels, soap and vasaline. We watched a Bollywood movie with them, which many said was the most fun they have had in ages. Just the sight of them laughing, “ooh”ing and “aweee”ing was amazing. They all were giving commentary to each other during the movie, and at least for that three hours they forgot all about their issues.
An amazing miracle happened by the mercy of Shri Mohanji. Baba spoke to us about what happens when we offer food to him. He mentioned it a few times. Before we left to the Seva, we offered rice, beans, pasta, sweets and salad to Mohanji in his special offering plate. The temple was then locked. When we looked at the plate again that night, we saw the food had physically been eaten. The curries disappeared and the rice and salad had been eaten. It had been eaten so neatly and not a grain of food fell. We were overjoyed and this was proof that Mohanji accepted all our love offerings.
The Dattatapovan Youth Group did seva at a primary school. This was wonderful to see because they took full responsibility of the seva and it was done impeccably. They offered fruits, a doughnut, chips, juice, sweets to the little kiddies. The kids had an amazing time and were only asking Nirupa Mataji for hugs. Also to celebrate Mohanji’s birthday, we will be feeding a crèche with 140 poor kids three times a day for an entire month from Mohanji’s birthday till the 23rd of March 2016.
The Saturday was an amazing day full of festivities and happiness and joy. Everyone participated in all the activities. We started with doing Padam Puja for Mohanji’s padukas and chanted the Mohanji gayatri. We then performed a homa dedicated to the tradition. While doing the Homa, many people felt a warm presence enter the ashram. Losh saw the back of a man walking towards the Homa. This was Sage Agasthia. He sat near the homa and was particularly enjoying the offerings to Mohanji. The highlight of Saturday was the Abhishekam. Everyone brought rosewater and non-dairy milk. We walked with it on our heads as a symbol of respect, and chanted and danced as we made our way down the street and then back up to the ashram.
A full abhishekam was then done for Mohanji, and he was dressed.
During the 1 hour abhishekam, some roses which were buds, fully opened. I have never seen roses open fully in ONE hour.
The skype call with Mohanji was amazing and everyone was in so much of a high that they could not speak. People told me that they went blank as soon as they saw and heard Mohanji. Such Bhakti!!! Afterwards we all offered flower garlands to Mohanji. We dressed him in marigolds. We chose marigolds because of the energy they carriy and so that we can give devotees these flowers. They can then plant them at their homes and have part of the celebration energy with them forever. During Aarti many people saw Mohanji Smile and even tear with happiness. They saw the tear roll down his eye with a huge smile.
On Tuesday we had an entire of chanting. Devotees came throughout the day and chanted in front of Mohanji for an hour each. Some chanted for a few sessions. At the end of the day we all chanted 68, 570 mantras for Mohanji. Devotees all said that the mantra chanting went so quickly. We also chanted 324 Bagalamuki Kavachams for Mohanji’s Protection. We then did abhishekam with the blessed protection water.
These nine days was utter bliss. All glory and thanks go to our loving Guruji. We love you so much Mohanji.