On Sunday November 4th 2018, the Holy day of Rama Ekadashi, the Mayapur Institute (MI), held its opening ceremony for the men’s Bhakti Sastri, ladies Bhakti Sastri, Bhakti Vaibhava 1, Bhakti Vaibhava 2 and Bhakti Vedanta 4, Winter season courses (2018-19).
HG Padmanayana Prabhu, Director of the Mayapur Institute, opened the inauguration. He welcomed the students who enrolled onto this seasons courses with words of encouragement and inspiration, thanking them for becoming a part of that pastime which Srila Prabhupada started – that everyone should come and study Vaisnava scriptures and his purports in Sri Dham Mayapur.
HG Padmanayana Prabhu conveyed Srila Prabhupada’s message to all of us “that throughout the world there is no institution to impart education in the matter of spiritual understanding. So we are going to open a big center in Mayapur where this education will be internationally imparted. Students from all parts of the world will go there to take education in this important subject”.
“In his leisure time in later life, His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura would simply read Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta. It was his favorite book. He used to say that there would be a time when foreigners would learn the Bengali language to read the Caitanya-caritāmṛta…….It is my wish that devotees of Lord Caitanya all over the world enjoy this translation, and I am glad to express my gratitude to the learned men in the Western countries who are so pleased with my work that they are ordering in advance all my books that will be published in the future. On this occasion, therefore, I request my disciples who are determined to help me in this work to continue their cooperation fully, so that philosophers, scholars, religionists and people in general all over the world will benefit by reading our transcendental literatures, such as Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam and Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta.
Thus end the Bhaktivedanta purports to Śrī Caitanya-caritāmṛta, dated November 10, 1974, at the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust, Hare Krishna Land, Juhu, Bombay.”
November 10th 1974, was the same tithi as the holy day of Rama Ekadashi, that this seasons ceremony was held and HG Atul Krishna Prabhu emphasized the importance of reading, studying, understanding and distributing Srila Prabhupada’s books, and ultimately how important this mission, this order of Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu, was to Srila Prabhupada.
Also present at the opening ceremony were teachers and special guests, HH Bhakti Rasayana Sagar Swami, HG Adi Purusha Prabhu HG Jananivas Prabhu, HG Pankajanghri Prabhu, HG Jivnath Prabhu, a senior scholar and theologian in Mayapur, HH Bhakti Narasimha Swami, HG Hari Lila Prabhu, HG Divyalīlā Mataji, HG Padma Sundari Mataji and HG Yagala Priti Mataji.
HH Bhakti Narasimha Swami Maharaja who first studied his Bhakti Sastri with the MI and now studying Bhakti Vaibhava at the MI shared his realisation that he too really wanted to study Srila Prabhupada’s books in greater detail and on a more regular basis. He thanked the MI for this opportunity to get involved in the deeper study of Srila Prabhupada’s books through the courses offered. He also encouraged others to do the same.
HH Bhakti Rasayana Sagar Swami also spoke some words of encouragement to the students and reminded us that Srila Prabhupada sacrificed so much in giving us these books and this knowledge. “This was his [Srila Prabhupada’s] greatest legacy” he said.
We were also fortunate enough to have been sent a message (described by HG Atul Krishna Prabhu as words of benediction, or ashirvada), by HH Jayapataka Swami Maharaja:
“My dear Mayapur Institute students please accept my best wishes. All glories to Srila Prabhupada. We are very pleased that the Mayapur Institute is starting their courses of Bhakti Sastri, Bhakti Vaibhava and Bhakti Vedanta this year…. My best wishes to all the students. May your stay in the Holy Dham be enlightening and inspiring for all of you. I take this opportunity to welcome you to the Holy Dham.”
This is the very first year that students will complete the Bhakti Vedanta qualification at the Institute. Students will graduate after having studied the final two Cantos (Cantos 11 and 12). This will bestow the qualification of Bhaktivedanta to those who graduate. This year HG Jananivas Prabhu and HG Pankajanghri Prabhu will facilitate the programme.
Our GBC for Sri Dham Mayapur, HH Bhakti Purushottam Swami Maharaja sent further words of encouragement and sent his prayers that the students educational experience in Sri Dham Mayapur be a be a wonderful and a fulfilling one.
This year, 155 students from over 32 countries enrolled in the above courses and a further intake is expected later in the month for upcoming courses including the Bengali and Russian Bhakti Sastri. The team at the MI are working hard to truly realize Srila Prabhupada’s vision that Sri Dham Mayapur become a center of excellence for spiritual education for people from all over the world no matter what their ethnic background, thereby creating a truly international experience.
This year marks the second year of the opening of the new Mayapur Institute Campus which will in time expand into the purpose built facility which our Founder Acharya, His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada envisioned. Various short and long courses are offered throughout the year at the MI. Please visit our website at http://mayapurinstitute.org if you would like further information, or, if you are already visiting the Dham, drop into our offices at Caitanya Bhavan.
We invite you all to come to Sri Dham Mayapur and study at the Mayapur Institute. Take advantage of this wonderful opportunity and join us in ensuring that we carry out Srila Prabhupada’s vision to educate the people of this world in the matter of the spiritual science of Krsna Consciousness and help make the world a better place to live in. This begins with you.
You can watch the entire opening ceremony here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZsvxPVBoxQ
To find out more about the Mayapur Institute, please visit us at http://mayapurinstitute.org/