Swami Chidananda Centenary Celebrations in Chicago, 21st May.

The 21st May 2016 happened to be  a day of Divine Coincidence. The Grace of Guru showered in abundance. It was the day of  Buddha Jayanti, an auspicious day. On this day Prince Siddharth was born. Also, on this day, Prince Siddharth attained enlightenment and becausem known as Gautama Buddha. And also on this day he attained Mahasamadhi. Birth, Enlightenment and Samadhi all happened on the same day.  It so happens that on this day in 1907, Paramahamsa Hariharananda Giri ji, the Disciple of Sri Yukteswar ji also born.

And how does this connect us, 73 years ago on this very day, in the year 1943, our Gurudev Sri Swami Chidanandaji met his Guru Sri Swami Sivanandaji for the first time at Rishikesh and offered himself at his service for his entire life. This year marks the 100th

It so happened that Paramahamsa Prajnananandaji, Spiritual Successor of Paramahamsa Hariharananda ji was also visiting their Ashram Kriya Vedanta Gurukulam on this occasion in the USA. When Swami Chidananda Sevashram requested him to grace the programme on 21st May, he gave his consent to be at the programme. Breaking his principles of many years, he gave permission to announce his programme in advance. Kriya Vedanta Gurukulam and their residents, Swami Sahajananda, Swami Vairagyananda, Swami Prabuddhananda, Swami Purnatmananda hosted our Managing Trustee, Swami Yatidharmananda and extended full support to organise this historic event.

Revered Swami Varadanandaji from the Vedanta Society of Chicago also consented to speak at the programme. Dr. Larry Greenfield, the Executive Director of the Parliament of the Worlds’ Religions  graciously accepted our invitation to be a speaker and also extended his full support. The amazingly courteous and hard working staff of the Parliament’s office in Chicago also participated in the programme.

Sri Saroj Das an ardent devotee of Gurudev Swami Chidanandaji Maharaj made sure to fly down from Atlanta just to be a speaker at this programme and pay his tribute. When very ardent and dear devotees, the Trivedi family drove down to attend the programme all the way from Houston and in a last minute coincidence, long time devotees Bharat Naik ji and Minal Naik ji also arrived at the programme,we felt blessings of Gurudev Swami Chidanandaji was flowing from all corners and it felt like the entire devotees of Gurudev Swami Chidanandaji are represented here by them at this programme.

It was a great honour for Swami Chidananda Sevashram to have received support from all these wonderful souls and to be able to pay tribute to Gurudev Swami Chidanandaji Maharaj in this Birth Centenary Year at Chicago. Gurudev visited Chicago in the year 1993 as the President of the Hindu Panel of the Parliament of the worlds’ Religions which was held to commemorate the Centenary of the Parliamen of the Worlds’ Religions 1893. There were hundreds of devotees and disciples of Kriya Vedanta Gurukulam who attended the programme. Here are some pictures and videos of the programme.