Jnana Yajna 38

Year & Dates:

March 17, 1958 to April 10, 1958

Yajna Topic:

Shrimad Bhagavad Gita- Chapters 16 & 17


Tirunelveli, India.

Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu – the temple town on the banks of the perennial Thamirabarani river, is praised in ancient literature including the Mahabharata. It abounds in sacrosanct temples which are also architectural marvels, like the famous Nellaiappar  Kantimati Temple dedicated to Bhagavan Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Saints of both the Shaiva and Vaishnava orders were born in that town. A place of music and fine arts, Tirunelveli also made great, brave contributions to Indian history. Such a place of inherent spirituality was the venue of Pujya Gurudev’s 38th Jnana Yajna.  On the evening of March 17, 1958, the inaugural day in the eminent Nellai Sangeeta Sabha, the heroic, modern sage of the Vedantic Renaissance, captivated thousands with His beaming face and majestic presence.

Language Above Words

Always considerate of the Vedantic aspirants of any background, Pujya Gurudev thought about the ability and difficulty of every seeker who walked into His Yajnashalas. To ensure that His explanations of Krishna’s Celestial Song as well as Adi Sankara’s Atma Bodha were understood by all, Pujya Gurudev enlisted the help of Sri T. Seshadri, a professor of the Madurai College, whom He humorously called “the Tamil Mouth of Swami Chinmaya.” With careful attention, Pujya Gurudev’s detailed discourses of both morning and evening were translated into Tamil. For 25 days, the people of Tirunelveli were soaring in sublime spirituality for five hours each day. They reflected on the value of virtues that Bhagavan Krishna lists in Chapter 16 and the warnings of vices. Pujya Gurudev and His translated talks emphasized the classification and  role of Shraddha when explaining chapter 17. Serious seekers lost themselves in the deeper import of Atma Bodha’s striking examples.

The ardent devotees of Tirunelveli actively participated in the Akhanda Nama Kirtan from March 27th, in the 3-day Gita Homa from March 28th, and in the euphoric Ganga-jal procession. They accompanied Pujya Gurudev on April 5th to an awe-inspiring yatra to the holy seaside temple of Tiruchendur for a wondrous Avabhrta Snaana in the sea and a special darshan of Lord Subramanya. 

When Pujya Gurudev’s Gita Jnana Yajna concluded after the heartwarming Gurudakshina ceremony on April 10th, His supremely seamless flow of knowledge, prayers, meditation, and satsangs had transported Tirunelveli into a bliss where language barriers didn’t exist.

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“Think,” Says Pujya Gurudev 

Devotion to knowledge (Jnana Yoga) is the positive way to persuade the mind to leave all its low temptations. When a child is playing with a delicate glass curio, to save the precious object, the parents generally offer a piece of chocolate, and the little child, anxious to get the chocolate, puts the precious thing down. Similarly, a mind that is awakened to the serener joys of the Self will, naturally, never hang on to the sensuous objects and their fleeting joys.

From Bhagavad Gita- Chapter 16, Book

As a man’s faith, so is he. Man is verily what his ‘faith’ is. The type of personality and its effectiveness or otherwise are all determined by the ‘faith’ under which it functions. That the achievement of life is ever colored by the type of faith with which the individual pursues his activities is very well-known and realized by all men of action.

From Bhagavad Gita- Chapter 17, Book

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