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Home> Dig.Samaj News>> MAHAMASTAKABISHEKA  2006 NEWS
      President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, who declared open the Mahamasthakabhisheka 2006 celebrations at  Shravanabelagoa  on January 22, 2006                                                                                                         

                                   Mahamasthakabhisheka celebrations 
President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, who declared open the Mahamasthakabhisheka celebrations at Shravanabelagola, being felicitated. Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh, Governor T.N. Chaturvedi, Digambara Jain Math's Charukeerthi Bhattaraka Sw amiji, and former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda present him with a memento.  PHOTO: K. Bhagya Prakash ( The Hindu)

Shravanabelagola (Hassan district): The hills of Vindhyagiri and Chandragiri in the ancient town of Shravanabelagola resounded with chants of "Bhagawan Bahubali ki jai" as President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam on Sunday declared open the first Mahamastakabhisheka of the millennium and reiterated the relevance of the Jain tenets of non-violence in a strife-ridden world.

President A.P.J. Abdul Klam at Shravanabelagola

Mr. Kalam said the practice of truth, ahimsa and vairagya that are the tenets of Jainism was relevant in modern times and the message of peace and non-violence as enunciated by Bahubali should be taken to all parts of the country. Addressing a vast gathering of Jain munis, nuns, acharyas and devotees who have assembled here from all parts of the world, the President said the spiritual congregation symbolised the continuity of a great tradition, which started in the 3rd century B.C. by Chandragupta Maurya, who settled here with 12,000 sages and munis performing austerities.
"It is a beautiful sight of people of multiple faiths and affiliations gathering to celebrate a great cultural event. The most sacred meaning of life consists of helping the establishment of peace and harmony on earth. This can only be achieved through the practice of truth, ahimsa and vairagya by all of us," the President said.
The Mahamastakabhisheka is held once in 12 years and Sunday's inauguration marked the launching of the events and rituals that will lead up to the grand event of the anointment of the 57-foot statue that will be held from February 8 to 19.
The President combined his speech replete with philosophical connotations and cultural traditions with poetry and expressed his appreciation of the evolution and ascent of the human soul as propounded in Jainism.
Mr. Kalam went nostalgic at the sight of the Jain Munis who congregated here and described his spiritual experience when he visited Pavapuri and recalled the contribution of Jainism to Indian philosophy, thought, literature and science. He said great poets such as Pampa, Ranna and Ratnakara Varni had enriched Kannada literature, while Jain rulers contributed immensely to the field of art and architecture.
"With his everlasting smile and benign looks, Gomateshwara Bahubali declares ahimsa and vairagya as the solution for all the ills of this world. I am happy that Mahamastakabhisheka has become an auspicious festival not only for the Jains but also for people from different religions. This is a great unifier and I wish that this message of unification is taken and all the sects in every religion forget the differences and follow the twin principles of ahimsa and vairagya," he said.
The President noted that five satellite towns had emerged around Shravanabelagola for the festivities. He said that there should be physical connectivity, electronic connectivity, knowledge connectivity which would lead to economic connectivity of the cluster of villages around the satellite towns.
"Economic development under the blessings of Gomateshwara, will become an example of how living conditions can be improved through the provision of urban facilities in rural areas," he said. 
Governor T.N. Chaturvedi said Bahubali and his life is a testimony that non-violence and renunciation hold the key to peace and prosperity.
Speakers including revolutionary Jain muni Acharya Tarun Sagar gave a clarion call for spreading non-violence and animal rights and said the 18th century saw the end of slavery, 19th century gave independence to nations, the 20th century gave rise to women's rights and said the 21st century should usher in liberation of animals and establishment of animal rights. Chief Minister N. Dharam Singh, former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda, Sri Charukeerthi Bhattaraka Swamiji of Sri Digambara Jain Math, Deputy Chief Minister M.P. Prakash, and others were present. 
         Source: The Hindu


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