February 28, 2010 dawned with a clear blue sky and turned out to be a perfectly glorious day, despite dismal predictions of cold, rainy weather. It was but a tiny example of the abundant torrents of Bhagavan’s and Sadguru’s Grace that has been pouring down on the devotees in the USA in the last couple of months. Once the time had come for Namadwaar to be established in the US, the events unfolded one after another like they were being pushed forward by a huge juggernaut. Any hurdles that came up incredibly melted away only to reveal the Divine Plan: Grihapravesh of the prayer house for Universal Love on Valentine’s Day and actual inauguration of the “Nama” Dwaar on the Jayanti of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Himself!
The day of inauguration (and the two weeks preceding it) was happily busy for all the members of Global Organization for Divinity from across the US. The ceremony began at 1:30 PM with the Honorable Mayor Delores Martin of Manvel, TX officially opening the “Namadwaar” curtain and cutting the ribbon to enter the beautiful prayer room adorned with pearls of wisdom from Sri Swamiji and other great saints. The traditional lamp was then lit and the Mayor and other guests then walked around the prayer room to read the Mahans’ words and look at posters about G.O.D. activities in the US, India and around the world.
The guests then came back outside for the rest of the inauguration ceremony. Jeevanji of the Houston G.O.D. satsang welcomed the guests, and honored Mayor Martin, Maaji (founder of Shirdi Sai Jalaram Mandir of Sugar Land, TX) and Sri Tupil Narasimhan (vice chairman of Meenakshi Temple of Pearland, TX). This was followed by a brief sketch of G.O.D. and its activities by GBji from San Jose, CA. Narayananji of Boston, MA then read out Sri Swamiji’s benedictory prayer message to the audience. Following this, the heads of two major temples in the Greater Houston area, Maaji and Sri Tupil Narasimhan then welcomed Namadwaar to the Sanatana Dharma family in Houston with wonderful, encouraging words.
Sri Ramanujamji then addressed the gathering with an inspiring message. He emphasized that everyone was only seeking the same Truth through different paths and that unity was the key, not uniformity. He said that there was beauty in diversity just like a bouquet of different flowers held together by the thread of “universal love” was more colorful and beautiful than a bouquet made of the same type of flower. He said chanting the Divine Names was the simplest way to infuse positivity and transformation into a person so that he could follow his path to the ultimate goal.
Mayor Martin was overwhelmed with her taste of Namadwaar and its message of universal love and peace, and said simply and succinctly that she was very thrilled and impressed with what she had seen.
Sriramji then gave a short vote of thanks, and finally Sri Ramanujamji led the gathering in a prayer for the victims of the devastating earthquake in Chile followed by a beautiful prayer for the Grace of the Lord in our lives as well as for the US to obtain freedom from global terrorism, the economic downturn and any attacks by Mother Nature. The Mahamantra was chanted 11 times by everyone present. The ceremony ended with tea and refreshments.
Earlier in the day, the jayanti of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was celebrated at Namadwaar with Mahamantra kirtan from 7:30 AM to 10:00 AM. Miss Shilpa Sadagopan then melodiously rendered a few kirtans on Sri Rama and Sri Krishna, which was followed by the sharing of experiences by devotees from Houston and Dallas. Sri Raghavendra Rao, a devotee from the Houston area, then gave a brief history of the life of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Then Sri Ramanujamji spoke about the greatness of Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and highlighted some key incidents from his life. This was followed by Aarati and lunch prasad.
The day ended with a feeling of elation and gratitude for the immense, boundless compassion of the Lord and Sadguru in making everyone present a small instrument of His Divine Will.