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Holi 2005 Report
Holi - Report
Bhajan News January 2005
Chirantana February 2005, 14th
Children's Learning - Jan-Feb 2005
Saraswati Puja
New Refresher course
An Appeal for JOGA Edu Programs

Our sincere thanks to everybody who have participated in the bhajan program and given their feedback based upon which it was decided to publish patrika Chirantan biannually. This issue contains information on activites related to bhajan program between Aug. 98 – Feb. 99. The bhajan program by Oriya community started on August 9, 1997 and since then this is being held every month at Baltimore ISKCON temple. It was decided to celebrate Holi as the annual program of this religious communion.

We are indebted to temple president Nrusingha Chaitanyaji and the priests in the temple for their continued support and encouragement for the program. We are thankful to Mahashakti Dash, Sudhansu Pani, Premanjan Pani, Jagatguru Dash and Gopal Krishna Dasa of Baltimore ISKCON temple for their sincere help in bhajan program. Besides heart touching religious discourse on Bhagabata Gita by Nrusingha Chaitanyaji, we were privileged to listen prabachan from ISKCON governing body member Ravindra Swarupji.

( Prabachan by Nrusingha Chaitanyaji on Jan. 16, 99)

What's inside

Happy Mother's Day: Satish Mishra
Temples: Bagmi Das
Ramayana and Squrrel: Prerana Pradhan
Sobhana Shyamaghana: Bigyani Das
Holi: Manoj Panda
The Rig Veda: Durga Mishra
Realization of Anger: Kanan Mishra
Temples in Maryland
Bhajan Participants
Holi Information: March 20, 99

What's New

On Sept. 19, 98, we had a special presentation by the children in which they expressed themselves as different religious characters.

We have started religious classes for the children. This is being held after the children finish their bhajan. They meet in a separate room to listen religious stories, learn slokas and prayers in Oriya language.

We thank both of them for volunteering their time for the children and also invite everybody to be actively involved in this program.

(Childrens' class under the guidance of Dr. Indu Mishra and Mrs. Illa Ojha.)

Dinner Discusion

Another important part of the bhajan program is dinner time discussion. We thank the following people for sharing their thoughts in different months as dinner speakers.

Bigyani Das
Indu Mishra
Brahma Priya Sen
Nrusingha Mishra
Bhajan Program Shedule
Bhajan by Children
Bhajan by all the participants
Prasad sevan and discussion
Karma yoga
Mana O' Sarira
Positive thinking
Reducing the risk of Cancer
3rd Saturday (preferably) of the month
6.00 PM
6:15 PM
7.00 PM
7.45 PM
8.30 PM

Contacts for bhajan program

Bigyani and Naresh Das: (301) 498 3729
Dharitri and Prafulla Misra: (301) 384 3417
Bandita and Nrusigha Mishra: (301) 540 4641
Sikha and Brahmapriya Sen: (410) 531 1943
Email to:


Happy Mother's Day (by Satish Mishra)
Temples (by Bagmi Das)
Ramayana and Squirrel (by Prerna Pradhan)
Kede Sobhana Shyamaghana (by Bigyani Das)
Holi (by Manoj Panda)
Introduction to "The Rig Veda" (by Durga Mishra)
Realization of Anger (by Kanan K. Mishra)
Temples in Maryland
Bhajan Participants
Upcoming HOLI information

Happy Mother's Day

You are special in every way
We think about you everyday
We hope you think the same of us
Don't worry I will not fuss

So never be real unhappy
Even though the day is sloppy
So have a happy mother's day

Satish Mishra, 5th grade,
son of Bandita and Nrusingha Mishra, MD


From the Jaganath temple of Puri
To the Sun temple of Konark
To the Shiva Vishnu temple of Maryland
Temples everywhere
Near and far
You can count one to be there
Where you wish to share your feelings with God
From the Synagogue of Jews
To the Mosques of Muslims
To the temples of Hindus
Temples always help you
When you need blessings and support from God

Bagmi Das, 6th Grade, Daughter of Bigyani and Naresh Das, MD

Ramayana and Squirrel

Friends, you all might have seen different kinds of squirrels. Squirrels are beautiful creatures with a lovely bushy tail and a pair of innocent eyes. I really love watching squirrels eat their food with their tiny little paws. I had the opportunity to see squirrels in Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Italy and here in America. The squirrels in these countries are uni-colored. They can be brown, black, gray, white, red etc. But there is one kind of squirrel that is really different. In contrast to the squirrels elsewhere, the Indian and some Asian squirrels have white parallel stripes on their back. There is a legend in Ramayana, describing how the Indian squirrels got their beautiful white stripes.

You all may be aware of Rama taking to forest to uphold his father’s promise. His young brother Lakshman and lovely wife Sita were with him. Ravana, the demon king of Lanka, abducted Sita. Rama could know about Sita with the help of Hanuman who flew to Lanka and located Sita in a prison in Ashoka grove (vana) guarded by ferocious looking demons.

Rama wanted to find a way to reach Lanka. But a great Indian ocean laid ahead of them. To reach Lanka, Rama decided to build a bridge with the help of the monkey engineer, Nala. He also summoned Varuna, the God of the Ocean, to cooperate by staying calm while the bridge (setu) was in the making. Immediately thousands of monkeys set about the task of gathering the materials to build the bridge. When the materials were piled up in heaps, Nala, the great architect, started to build the bridge. It was a stupendous undertaking. But the entire monkey army worked hard and completed the bridge in just five days.

During those 5 days, Rama noticed that a squirrel was helping them in his own way. That squirrel was of one color, same as the squirrels elsewhere outside India. After taking a dip in the water it was coming out and rolling over the sands. In the process the sands were sticking on to his back. He was then immediately rushing to the bridge and shrugging off the sands. That was like putting sands on the bridge. He was doing it tirelessly again and again till the completion of the bridge. Rama was so happy with the squirrel. He held the squirrel on the palm of his one hand and caressed the squirrel’s back affectionately with his five fingers. And that is the reason why the squirrels in India have white stripes on their back.

Prenana Pradhan, 4th grade, daughter of Chandana and Padmanava Pradhan, MD

Kede Sobhana Shyamaghana

Bigyani Das, Columbia, MD


The advent of spring brings in the melodious tune of the cuckoos, blossoming shrubs, fruit-laden trees above all the soothing breeze which gives immense pleasure to the people denoting the end of the dreary winter. When the barns are full with grains, the atmosphere is pleasant and the cold. foggy mornings are transformed into vibrant sun shines, the people celebrate various festivities to enjoy themselves. Holi or "Basantosava" is a very important spring festival which is observed in much pomp and gaiety all over India.

Holi is celebrated on the full-moon day of the month of Falguna (Feb-March), which is the last month of Indian calendar. This celebration is also known as the "Dola Purnima" as the presiding deity of this festival, Lord Madanamohana or Sri Krishna with Raadhaa are lovingly swung in beautifully decorated swings. In Orissa, it is celebrated for five days. It starts from the tenth day of the bright fortnight of the month of Falguna (Feb-March). This day is known as "Fagu Dashamee". On this day the people smear "Abira" or "Fagu" or red colored powder on their heads and take round the idols of Krishna in beautifully decorated palanquins which are otherwise known as "Bimaana". This colorful procession is led by the drummers, pipers, conch-men and it halts in front of every house of the village. Here the householders offer "Bhoga" to the Lord. The daily rounds of the deity continue for four days and it is known as "Chaachery". On the fifth and final day, i.e. on the day of Dola Purnima, all the idols of the nearby villages are taken to a predetermined open space which have many swings on the decorated platforms. Then the idols are made to swing with the chantings of devotional music. It is said in the "Padma Puraana" that the vision of the Lord Krishna on the swing, destroys all sins.

In many places big fairs, or "Melanas" are arranged where idols of the deity are assembled. The Bimaanas of the surrounding villages are placed in a row for public view. Keen competition is observed in the decoration of the Bimaanas. When all the expected Bimaanas reach the place, display of fire-works takes place and this is watched by enthusiastic crowd. In the fairs agricultural equipment, commodities, household articles and furniture are bought and sold. Such Melanas or Fairs continue till the month of Chaitra in different places of the district of Cuttack, Puri and Ganjam. Generally in the urban areas the Holi is celebrated on the Purnima or full-moon day, where people smear each other with brightly hued powders and spray colored water from pichkaaris. This exuberant festival is also associated with the immortal love of Krishna and Radha, and hence, Holi is spread over 16 days in Vrindavan as well as Mathura - the two cities with which Lord Krishna shared a deep affiliation.

Mythologically speaking this is euphoric celebration at the destruction of the demoness Holikaa, the sister of Hiranyakashipu, the Rakhsasa king. Hiranyakashipu tried to kill his own son Prahllaada, because of his great devotion to Lord Vishnu. But he all his evil plans to accomplish that goal failed miserably. Holikaa had a boon from Lord Shiva that she couldn*,t be burnt. Hiranyakashipu asked her sister to enter the blazing fire with young Prahllada, so that his son will be killed. But miraculously Holika was turned to ashes and devotee Prahllaada came out unscathed. To commemorate this incident, Holipodaa is celebrated on the previous night of Dola Purnimaa. This reminds people the victory of the good over the evil. This maxim helps the people to lead their lives in a noble way.

Spring, on its trail, brings romanticism in the air. The colorful flowers, the beautiful fruits, the cool wind, and the lilting tunes of birds all create a very idyllic atmosphere around. In the midst of this, the divine lover Krishna plays with Gopees in colorful ways with his exquisite flute. The divine love between Raadhaa and Krishna is very unique. Raadhaa is the symbol of Prakruti or matter, Krishna is Purusha or Spirit and by the combination of these two, life is created. Akin to the play of electric power on the tungsten filament brings out the light, similarly by the combination of matter and spirit the symptoms of life is manifested, but each one on their own cannot do that. As the Raadhaa-Krishna idols, on the swing are pushed from one end to another end, to keep the swinging motion going, similarly the life is sustained in the human body by the process of rhythmic inhalation and exhalation process. Raadhaa became at one with Lord Krishna by her intense love towards Him and she always lost herself in the divine music of Krishna*,s flute, similarly one can hear the Pranaba or OM-kaara dhwani in his body by intense meditation and can get realization ultimately. Although Gopees were playing with colorful powder , their mind and heart were on Lord Krishna only. Similarly in our present world in all our colorful happy moments we should not carried away by emotions, rather we should always focus on the Lord. If we could remember Him in all our activities, may be in happiness or may be in sadness, we can surely attain Him.

Manoj Panda, Detroit, Michigan

Introduction to "The Rig Veda"

The ancient Hindu scriptures are 3000 years old. The Vedas are the initial composition of the Hindu thoughts. The word "Veda" is a Sanskrit word which means "knowledge" or "wisdom". There are in fact four Vedas: the Rig Veda" or "Veda of Hymns", the Sama-Veda or the "Veda of Chants", the Yajur-Veda or the "Veda of sacrifice" and the Artharva-Veda, which is later in date than the earlier three. Of the several Vedic texts, the Rig Veda is most fundamental to Indian thought, the others dealing with more particular matters such as the sacrificial formulas, melodies, and magic. Composed over a long period of time and coming into their present form, the Vedic hymns were eventually attributed to the divine breath or to a vision of the seers.

The first hymn of Rig Veda describes "Agni," the god of fire, whose name is the common word for fire, is a terrestrial deity. He is most often compared to animals, with wood for his food and melted butter for his drink. He is the mouth by which the gods consume those items during the sacrifice. He is born from wood (as two sticks are rubbed together), but then devours his parents. As "Lord of the House," he is a guest in human dwellings in the form of the domestic fire.

In the hymn, it says: O Agni, the ruler of the sacrifices, the work of the sacrifice, who gleam in the darkness by brightly shining, keeper of the cosmic laws in the form of universe, the invoker who has the powers of a sage, true and most brilliant in glory we pray you with all the devotions. Please be of easy access to us, abide with us for our well being by removing the darkness and guide us as a father to his children.

Durgamadhava Misra, Caldwell, NJ

Realization of Anger

Anger arises in everyone. Considering anger as a routine affair, not as anything extraordinary was accepted by me for many years. Time has now come for me to realize that there are many confusing concepts in connection with anger. I am getting interested to find a way to dissolve these angers.

First, I find good excuses of showing my anger and justify each anger without having the knowledge of the consequences of the anger. I realize, justifying each of my anger is my ego. And my ego covers the entire arena of greatness of me, "How great I am" and "how good I am". Second, I do not open the space in my heart or mind to think about avoiding the anger. The space takes over the place of desires of material life (wealth, money, property etc.) which is at the peak most of the time. Finally, I do not experience any profit out of all these years of anger temperament rather decide to live with hurtful feelings. As the years pass by I realize these hurtful feelings are my inner enemies. To whom shall I blame for all these inner enemies? Shall I blame God, the Guru and the people? I realized that "blaming somebody will never work". Also, I understand my ignorance and something inside me reminds me of my anger. In reality I find that anger is sprouting out of layers and layers of unfulfilled desires.

I forget to think that I am responsible for my anger. I need to look at my anger, must analyze my anger and last of all dissolve the anger. How do I start? It comes to me "Control the mind". I can’t let my mind wander in any direction it wants; I have to hold the reins so that my mind stays focused. If anger comes, let me experience it and also learn from it. In other words controlling mind demands discipline. The first discipline in my experience is to lead a life that is filled with divine virtues. To acquire divine virtues I need to think of achieving freedom from desire and anger and the victory over craving and delusion. External actions reveal the real quality of our minds. Consider the clear surface of water in a pond. Throw a stone into it and at once the mud rises up. Our minds are just like that. Karma is the mirror, which shows us our true form. This means the mind must stand united with the action. Example: I worship the Sivalinga, the symbol of Lord Siva and perform ceremonial bath by bathing the Linga in a continuous stream of water and chanting mantra simultaneously. If I keep pouring water as an outward action and not engage my mind, then the external act of pouring water on the Sivalinga and pronouncing the mantra are meaningless. The yoga of desireless action is achieved only when the outward performance of external action and attitude of the mind are much needed to action is combined with the purity of the mind within. The gist or the essence is "We need a pure heart and a pure mind". Studying the Bhagawat Gita and getting a thorough knowledge from my reverend Guru I understand the essence of the Gita which helps me to gather the meaning and the quality of disciplines I shall seek. Getting up early, doing daily chores and retire at night do not describe the true meaning of discipline in this context. Disciplining the mind requires steadfastness of watching what is coming up and what is hiding in any corner of my mind. If I could gain the power of understanding the very initial stage, the seed of desire and anger, then I become witness to both desire and anger. Additionally, it is important to trace the footsteps of anger and unfulfilled desires without following them as they advance in a path. Power of understanding the anger and desire is the secret to oneself. Thus the truth of pure heart and pure mind shines as sun’s rays and brightens our heart.

The scriptures give me a good lesson - the lesson is whatever or how many austerities I must have performed, my tiny bit of anger would set a fire to all the merits to dust. Same way, it does not matter how many pure actions and pure thoughts fill our days, if there is even a spark of anger alive in our hearts, all that purity burns in an instant.

Having this knowledge, why not I practice chanting God’s name repeatedly with a melodious voice? Then I can listen to my own voice inside. The rhythms naturally would connect the sound to my mind and to my heart. Chanting is a delight. As chanting takes place in the inner heart, slowly the divine virtue arises. You know I feel _____, I am light-hearted, relaxed and most of all ecstatic. Thus the magnitude of anger and desire in me start dissolving as I cultivate this divine virtue inside me.

Kanan K. Mishra, Columbia, MD

Temples and Religious centers in Maryland

ISKCON Baltimore: 200 Bloomsbery Ave., Catonsville, (410) 744 1624
ISKCON Potomac: 10310 Oaklyn Dr, Potomac, (301) 299 7205
Shiva Vishnu Temple: 6905 Cipriano Rd, Lanham, (301) 552 3335
Hindu Temple: 10001 Riggs Rd, Beltsville, (301)445 2165
Shri Mangal Mandir: 17110 New Hampshire Ave., Silver Spring, (301) 384 8193
Chinmaya Mission: 46 Norwood Rd, Silver Spring, (301) 384 5009

Bhajan Participants

We express our heartfelt thanks to all who have participated in the bhajan program during Aug. 98-Feb 99.

Laxminarayan Bhuian, VA
Bigyani and Naresh Das, MD
Nameeta and Chitaranajan Das, PA
Niharika and Prasant Das, MD
Sulekha and Santosh Das, NJ
Pratap Dash, MD
Itishree and Deepak Dhal, VA
Madhumita and Dhirendra Kar, MD
Soumyajeet Kar, VA
Ulashi and Mahendra Kar, NJ
Bandita and Nrusingha Misra, MD
Brahmansu Mishra, MD
Dharitri and Prafulla Misra, MD
Jhunu and Indu Misra,MD

Gita and Sushant Mohanty, MD
Sulochana and Jay gopal Mohanty, PA
Lipisree and Srikant Nayak, MD
Rajashree and Sukumar Nayak, MD
Ila and Arun Ojha, MD
Kalpana and Pinakhi Panigrahi, MD
Chandana and Padmanava Pradhan,MD
Alok Praharaj,MD
Asha Sahu, MD
Urmila and Devaraj Sahu, MD
Sikha and Brahmapriya Sen, MD
Amar Senapati, VA
Anusuya and Ravi Tripathy, PA
Liza and Pramod Tripathy, MD

Thank You

Thanks to all the families for their contributions for bhajan program.
Special thanks to the following families for sponsoring the feast on different months.

Bigyani and Naresh Das, MD
Nameeta and Chitaranjan Das, PA
Anusuya and Ravi Tripathy, PA