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    Satsang Karo ne Karavo
9 April, 2005, London, UK

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The UK Bal/Balika Mandal held it’s annual shibir in the London Mandir on Saturday, 9th April 2005. An amazing 815 Bal/Balikas from 30 different centres around the UK attended the one-day event hosted by saints and volunteers. This shibir was special because for the first time ever in the history of the sanstha the Shishu mandal members as young as three years old were also catered for and taught how Satsang plays a big role in their lives. The theme for all of this year’s shibirs was ‘Satsang Karo ne Karavo’ as per Swamishri’s blessings.

The shibir was opened with the traditional Deep-pragatya ceremony and an outline of the aims and objectives. Huge posters suspended from the stage ceiling reminded children of the points stated during Swamishri’s visit to the UK last year. They were namely (1) Satsang reading, (2) Do puja daily, (3) BAPS- Ek parivar, (4) Atmabudhi, (5) See no evil and (6) No mobile phones. The whole aim was for them to become stronger in Satsang so that they are able to pass the message onto others.

The opening session started with a video presentation of Swamishri’s UK 2004 visit including the much liked shibir the Balaks had with Bapa entitled ‘Atmabuddhi’. This was followed by a presentation of how ‘practice makes perfect’ making the point that regularity is also essential in Satsang life.

The Bal/Balikas were split into three different age groups namely 3-5, 6-9 and 10-14 year-olds. The Shishu group which numbered sixty-five were escorted to a hall in which they participated in interactive exercises teaching them the basics of Satsang. The other two groups who sat separately were guided on ‘how to be proud of our heritage’ and Indian traditions through presentations by P. Yagnatilak Swami.

Karyakars from Leicester gave a wonderful interactive and informative presentation on our Satsang Basics like Puja, Thal and Aarti. Everyone liked the humorous video that followed on the do’s and don’ts of Puja’. Even lunch was made for memorable and enjoyable with a surprise awaiting all the Balaks. The santos lovingly served food and brought a smile to every heart that passed by.

The children were then divided into groups of six and were supplied with basic materials in which to design a temple where aarti and thal could be offered. The aim was for them to combine their efforts and work with unity to achieve their goal. Prizes were awarded for teamwork as well as the most innovative and artistic models. The young Karyakars of Birmingham and Loughborough Mandal conducted this session well.

The third session, titled ‘Power of Discretion,’ informed Bal-Balikas of the potential dangers of modern technology and the media. It taught them that by using devices such as TV, Internet and mobile phones with discretion, the dangers could be avoided and we can withstand the pressures of society.

During the last session, P. Shukmuni Swami gave an inspiring talk on the greatness of our Guru and his ability to easily transform lives of one and all. The ultimate item of the day was a huge screen presentation followed by a talk by P. Atmaswarup Swami on the uniqueness of ‘Mystic India’. Hitenbhai taught the Bal/Balikas how they can ‘be part of the bigger picture’ by presenting the Mystic India information pack to their school teachers and encourage them to come and experience Nilkanth Varni’s epic journey at an large format theatre in various parts of UK. In this way, even they were able to offer their seva by being instrumental in its promotion.

It goes without saying that the monumental effort by Yogibhai and Rupeshbhai under santos guidance in making this shibir a success was proven by the look of delight on all of the children’s faces.


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