By Srivas Caitanya
All glories to Srila Prabupada
All glories to Sri Sri Guru and Gauranga
All glories to Sri Sri Jagannatha Baladeva and Subhadra Maiya
Please accept my sincere and humble obeisances
The launch of the Deepavali Damodara Festival for 2010 was unique in that it was enthusiastically participated by devotees from ISKCON Centers from many other states in Malaysia. This yearâs launch was particularly memorable too as it was the first time that leaders from all over the country were invited to this annual launch and to witness first hand an auspicious occasion such as this; initiated with the participation of local GBCâS ie, H.H. Jayapataka Swami Maharaj, H.H., Bhaktivrajendra Nandana Swami Maharaj, President of ISKCON Malaysia , and ISKCON leaders nationwide. It was a memorable and spiritual experience of an event, steeped in significance and much importance in the Vaishnava calendar.
The launch commenced with a multimedia show, cleverly choreographed to depict the 10 year history of ISKCON Malaysiaâs remarkable journey. It was a surprise to many that the initial program that commenced with only 20 homes has since mushroomed into a nationwide event reaching out to about 20,000 homes, all within these ten short years. It was also revealed that Damodara has now spread beyond the borders of Malaysia and has become an event participated worldwide.
This show and tell was followed by a short welcoming speech by the CDMC chairman H.G.Radha Madhavam Das (congregational division of Malaysian chapter). In his speech HG was emphatic in encouraging the devotees and everyone present to take up the preaching during the Damodara month seriously and wholeheartedly. In addition, HG reminded everyone to nurture the contacts reached out to during this significant month, so that the Damodara program will in turn become the catalyst for these new found individuals and all their loved ones to benefit from Lord Damodaraâs blessings and become servants and devotees of Lord Krsna.
Both the Maharajas then took turns to share their views with the congregation; expressing joy and happiness in the process at the progress made by Malaysian devotees and for their exemplary dedication and seva during the propitious month of Damodhar. Their Holinesses expressed that the spiritually committed service of devotees in spreading KC amongst more people in Malaysia will benefit both the preacher and recipient of the spiritually charged messages of the Lord . H.H. Jayapataka Swami urged all devotees to not only undertake and preach the Damodara program for themselves but also encourage others to take up this preaching such that thousands more may be exposed and thus be enlightened through participation in this program. The simple yet momentous act of lighting the ghee lamp offering in subservience to the sweet Lord may well be the turning point for some. His Holiness encouraged devotees to play their roles well for the benefit of others.
His Holiness also encouraged the assembled devotees to take this program to even greater heights in the forthcoming years; with even better and innovative planning in the hope that more shall avail themselves of Lord Damodaraâs blessings.
The program ended with a short skit by Gokul garden children, and this was followed by the official launch by H.H, Jayapatala Swami Maharaj who offered the first lamp as token commencement for everyone else to begin their offerings in solemn reverence to Lord Damodara. Both the Maharaja’s blessed the congregation for its continued success in serving Lord Krsna.
This year, the devotees of Malaysia are targeting in excess of 20,000 homes to be visited during this Damodara month. With the Lordsâs blessings and everyoneâs cooperation, sacrifice and goodwill, this target will not be too high, too big or too difficult. All glories to Lord Damodara.
Happy Deepavali Damodara preaching and happy preachingâŠ
For pictures pls click on the link below: