Jnana Yajna 57

Year & Dates:

May 10, 1959 to May 31, 1959

Yajna Topic:

Shrimad Bhagavad Gita- Chapter 3


Mumbai (Bombay), India.

It was a strange spectacle for 21 days, a puzzling combination of festivity and silence, of fervent prayers and deep introspection. With an unusual stamina, the work-weary and fashionably secular people of Mumbai hurried into Matunga’s Gymkhana Grounds every evening from May 10, 1959, by trains, trams, and other transport. They forgot the hardship of sitting on a hard ground for two hours. The charismatic Master of Gita had their minds in His reins. The magic began from the first moments of a vibrant inauguration on May 10th. A delightful array of sweet little children from the nearby orphanage, dancing with their batons to the rhythm of the drums and cymbals, led a joyful procession with Pujya Gurudev walking to the orange-canopied yajnashala. With the traditional Purnakumbha welcome, the fluttering Om Flag, and the holy Gangajal pots that arrived with Pujya Gurudev, the start was sanctified.

Dramatic Touch, Dedicated Actions

The 57th Jnana Yajna was a labor of love collectively organized by the Dadar, Matunga, and Sion localities of Mumbai. The eminent Sri Ananthasayanam Iyengar, Speaker of the Lok Sabha, on inaugurating the yajna, prefaced that the chapter 3 of the Gita was “dedicated to the philosophy of action, which is the topic for today’s turmoil’s and failures of man. Our present condition is similar to Arjuna’s despair, of retreating when action is necessary.” To educate the huge gathering over 7000 of mixed aptitudes, Pujya Gurudev brought out the nuances of the path of action as expounded in the third chapter, Karma Yoga of the Gita. Powerful in its flow like the vigorous Ganga, His words swirled through the audience who wondered and pondered about duties that uplifted life.

The 6:30 am morning classes on Atma Bodha drew about a thousand spiritually thirsty aspirants; to encourage them to memorize and recite the poetic 68 verses, a prize was announced to be awarded when the yajna ended. Additionally, each evening between 7 pm and 7:50 pm, Sri T. Seshadri (whom Pujya Gurudev called “His Tamil mouth!”) translated the previous evening’s discourse for the Tamil-speaking public, and Sri Natarajan, the Editor of “Tyagi” chanted the slokas of the third chapter.

To bolster introspection with spiritual sadhana, the daylong Vishnu Laksharchana  from 7 am until 5 pm on May 23rd in the Jain Boarding Hall was a heavenly experience. The idol of Bhagavan Vishnu which glowed more with each arati after every round of chanting the Vishnu Sahasranama, the fragrant flowers and incense, the ardent devotees, and the inspiring presence of Pujya Gurudev in that hall – every aspect sparked the highest sense of worship.

A unique feature of the 57th yajna was a memorable 4-scene drama staged by the ex-students of the Dramatic Club on the story of the immortal devotee, Markandeya. Pujya Gurudev ensured all children aged 12 and under got front row seats to the well-enacted play.

 In the Guru Dakshina ceremony on May 29th, Pujya Gurudev handed the yajna prasad of ‘Japa Yoga and Gayatri.’ Every action in that 57th Jnana Yajna was performed with Grace and surrender.

Photo Gallery

“Think,” Says Pujya Gurudev 

It is obvious that the productivity that is dormant in any situation can be invoked only by man’s sincere efforts. This potential which generally lies dormant everywhere is the Deva to be cherished by the worker through the Yajna activities, and certainly, it is sure that the Deva will manifest in turn to cherish or to bless the worker. “Thus cherishing one another, man shall gain the highest good,” is the Divine intention, in the mind of the creator, says Krishna in this stanza.

This Law of Seva is faithfully followed by every  sentient and insentient member of the cosmos instinctively. Man alone is given the freedom to act as he likes and to the extent he disobeys this Universal Law of Sacrifice, Yajna, to that extent he comes to suffer, not because there are no joy content in things and situations, but because he with his arrogant and egoistic actions bring a discord in the harmony of the existence around him.

From Tyagi Magazine

“Rain” is the necessary condition for the conversion of the mineral raw material into enjoyable and nutritive food in life. Similarly, in all fields of activity there is “an enjoyable profit” which can be gathered only when the field comes under conditions favorable for it to produce those profits. “Self-dedicated activities” (Yajna) when performed in any given field of endeavor, will be creating therein “Conditions necessary for the field to smile forth” (rain) in a luxurious “crop of profit” (Annam) enjoyable by the society.

For example-the wasteful waters of a river flowing idly can be dammed and made use of for protecting agriculture if the waters are intelligently employed in irrigating the fertile lands now lying fallow on its banks. Through sacrifice and work alone can the dam be built and when it is built, it provides “conditions helpful” (rain) for bringing the lands on either side under the plough. Again, making use of the irrigated land man is yet to strive: ploughing, sowing, weeding, waiting, gathering; before he can to enjoy the profit of his activities, the food.

We are shown how this Wheel-of -Action is connected with and includes the Supreme. The principle of right action has come out of the Creator himself and the Creator is none other than the Imperishable Supreme.  Therefore, the All-pervading Supreme is ever centered in all undertakings pursued in an honest spirit of Self-dedication for the good of all.

From Tyagi Magazine

Is the Rat Race everything?

Can work become a path to self discovery? With humor and wisdom, Swamiji reveals how work, when performed with mindfulness and awareness, can become a handmaiden for spiritual progress.