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Ramakrishna Mahasamelan Trust 

Release of book by Dr Karan Singh  

Sri Ramakrishna Mahasamelan Trust organized a function on 27 August 2002 at India  International  Center,  New  Delhi,  to release a book titled "Swami Ashokanandaji  Maharaj, His Divine Message" compiled by Mr Manmohan Dhar from  the  letters  written to him by Swamiji. The book was released by Dr Karan  Singh amidst an emotional gathering of Swamiji's devotees. The whole atmosphere was disciplined and serene with shrine-like ambience, inspite of a much larger   gathering than expected.   Many eminent people who  had close association  with  Swamiji  were  present  to commemorate  the occasion because  anybody  who  had come in contact with Swamiji  directly or indirectly  was  influenced forever by his quiet but powerful and spiritual personality.

Swami  Ashokanandji  was  born  in East Bengal, left his home at the age of eight  and  took  shelter  in  the  Ashram  of  Swami Satchitananda  ji, who was a disciple of holy Mother, Ma Sharda Devi, wife of  Sri  Ramakrishna Paramhans.   He was sent to Kashmir at the age of 22 where he lived at Nagdandi Ashram till he passed away at the age of 60. He was highly enlightened in the highest tradition of the order of sanyasins but his love and commitment for Kashmir reflected the vision of Swami Vivekananda when he said "We want to lead mankind to the place where there is neither the Vedas, nor the Bible nor the Koran?  On the banner of every religion will soon be written”help and not fight" "assimilation and not destruction" "harmony and peace and not dissention?"   This Kashmir is a veritable heaven on the earth? I am trying my best in starting a center here.  So much to do here and the material so hopeful."

Mr  Manmohan  Dhar welcomed  the  guests after which Dr Karan Singh lit the lamp  and  paid his tribute with reverence to the images of Sri Ramkrishna Paramhans,   Ma   Sharda,   Swami   Vivekananda  and  Swami  Ashokanandaji.Thereafter, Mr Rajinder Kachroo and Mrs Shevanti Sanyal enthralled the audience with  a few devotional songs.

The occasion had a special significance as Dr Karan Singh and his wife used to visit the Nagadandi Ashram and knew Swamiji, which made his remarks more pertinent.   Dr  Singh,  in  his  inimitable  style  spoke eloquently about
Kashmir,  its  current  crisis,  reminiscing  the cultural, spiritual and secular history of Kashmir, about  great saints like Swami Lakshmanju, Pandit  Gopi  Krishna  and  Swami Ashokanandaji, who influenced him greatly.

He hoped that the vision of such great saints would soon ensure human dignity irrespective of religion, caste, creed and rank. He also wished the Ramakrishna Mahasamelan Trust all success to achieve its objectives to promote harmony between all religions.

After  Swamiji's  passing  away,  The  Nagdandi  Ashram  was handed over to Vivekananda  Kendra  and has been well managed by Sri Vivek Roy for the last 13 tumultuous years .This place has developed into an epicenter of religious amity, love and catholicity in the vale of Kashmir and  world  at large. A film was shown before conclusion of the programme. The film shows the proceedings of a function on the 21st and 22nd of April, which was attended by Hindus, muslims and sikhs. Shree Faroukh Abdullah attended the function and emphasised the need for religious amity so badly needed in this troubled world today. He laid a foundation stone of a gate to be built which will be named "Parahansa Dwar" and dedicated a sarovar to the nation and named it Swami Ashokananda Sarovar.

The book titled”Swami Ashokanandaji Maharaj? His Divine Message" and another  book  titled  "Life,  Love  &  Joy"  - a collection of poems by Mr Manmohan  Dhar  were  distributed  at  the  function.

The Meeting ended with a vote of thanks by Shri Makhan Lalji Raina a saint and an enlightened disciple of Swami Ashokanandji Maharaj and now a successful businessman

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