30th Year Of Isha Mahashivratri Themed On “Kashi” Held With A Bang In Presence Of Sadhguru, Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar

30th Year Of Isha Mahashivratri Themed On “Kashi” Held With A Bang In Presence Of Sadhguru, Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar

The Vice President was Isha’s guest of honour for its annual nightlong cultural extravaganza

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Tuesday, March 12, 2024, 03:17 PM IST
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“The Mahashivratri celebrations at Isha Yoga Center transcend language, nationality, religion, and culture, a rare unifying spectacle, and a great need for the present day world. The methods offered here are unique, with four paths - Bhakti, Kriya, Karma, and Gyan. This comprehensive approach satisfies the thirst and anxiety of every individual on the planet,” said Vice President of India Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar, speaking at the Mahashivratri celebrations at the Isha Yoga Center in Coimbatore this evening. The Vice President was Isha’s guest of honour for its annual nightlong cultural extravaganza, which began at 6 pm on Friday (March 8) and continued till 6 am on March 9.

Shri Dhankhar was accompanied by his wife and second lady of India, Dr Sudhesh Dhankhar. Thiru RN Ravi, Honourable Governor of Tamil Nadu, Sri Indrasena Reddy, Honourable Governor of Tripura, Shri Banwarilal Purohit, Honourable Governor of Punjab, Thiru L Murugan, Honourable Union Minister of State for the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying, were also present on the occasion.

“You are not only inspiring young people to practise but also inspiring them to take Yoga to all corners of the world,” Shri Dhankhar said.

Appreciating the effort by Sadhguru, Shri Dhankhar remarked, “In a divided and inpatient world, Sadhguru ji emanates compassion and inclusiveness. His focus on issues that are genuine to humanity and the planet has earned him accolades all over.”

Sadhguru received the Vice President at the Yoga Center where the Vice President, along with his wife and other dignitaries, attended the Pancha Bhuta Kriya (cleansing of the five elements) conducted by Sadhguru at the Dhyanalinga, a unique and powerful energy form consecrated by Sadhguru as a doorway to liberation.

He was then accompanied to the Mahashivaratri venue - at the iconic Adiyogi, the main venue for the celebrations. Shri Dhankhar offered Kailash Teertham to the Yogeshwar Linga, where he inaugurated the night long celebrations by lighting the Mahayoga Yagna to symbolise the spread of Yoga around the world.

The celebrations began with the Linga Bhairavi Utsav Murti procession and Maha Aarti. Later on, Sadhguru welcomed the dignitaries to the event.

Welcoming the Vice President and other dignitaries to the event, Sadhguru shared about the 30-year journey of the Mahashivratri festival at Isha with a few people and just a couple of songs. “In 1994, we were just a little over 70 people, and there was only one lady, whom we called Chennai Patti, who knew only two songs. She sang the same two songs throughout the night. But we were so crazy, blown away by Shiva. We danced, we meditated, and we celebrated the entire night with just two songs. Her throat was hoarse, but she went on singing with devotion that fired everybody up the entire night. And here we are after 30 years with the largest event on the planet. Last year, over one hundred and forty million people participated in the Mahasivarathri event across the world. This year, people are estimating it could be over 200 million,” Sadhguru said.

Talking about the great night of Shiva, Sadhguru explained that there is a natural upsurge of energy on the night of Mahashivratri, which human beings alone are privileged to make use of because we have a vertical spine. Being at Isha, which is located at 11 degrees latitude, creates maximum centrifugal energy or upward movement, the natural physical force.

On this divine occasion, Sadhguru also consecrated over five million Rudraksha Beads which will be distributed to the devotees and seekers free of cost.

Kashi Theme for celebrations

The ancient city of Varanasi and its majestic ghats were depicted in the decorations at the iconic Adiyogi, the main venue for Isha’s Mahashivratri festival. Sadhguru revealed the Kashi theme for this year’s celebrations in his tweet on Friday.

“A Tower of Light and Adiyogi's limitless Grace. Our fortune to be celebrating #Mahashivratri in the ambience of "Kashi" at Adiyogi!” Sadhguru said, revealing the theme.

Correlating the theme of Kashi with the ambience of the Isha Yoga Center, Shri Dhankhar remarked, “The ambiance at Isha Yoga Center is so impactful, with consecrated spaces like Dhyanlinga, Devi Linga Bhairavi, sacred Kunds, and the Adiyogi. The composition reminds me of Kashi and it's wonderful to see Kashi coming at Adiyogi. I felt I was in the ancient city itself.”

Performances

The performances began with Adiyogi songs by Sounds of Isha, Isha’s homegrown band. Later dance performances by Isha Samskriti enthralled the audience and set the stage for a multitude of diverse performances.

An eclectic lineup of artists from diverse backgrounds will grace the stage at Isha's Maha Shivratri celebrations. Notable performers included Padma Shri Shankar Mahadevan, renowned for his soul-stirring compositions. Vocalist Rathijit Bhattacharjee joined Isha's homegrown band, Sounds of Isha, while adding to the musical tapestry were rappers Paradox Tanishq Singh and MC Heam, along with Punjabi folk sensation Gurudas Maan, and the versatile Mahalingam Marimuthu representing Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, and Telugu folk traditions. Mooralala Marwada, hailing from the Kutch region of Gujarat, who brought the essence of folk and Sufi music. The performances were complemented by the rhythmic beats of Lebanese drummers, Sodaf Beirut.

In a mesmerising duet, renowned Carnatic vocalist Sandeep Narayan collaborated with singer Prithvi Gardhav, rendering an unforgettable musical experience for the audience.

Thousands of devotees thronged the Isha Yoga Center for the mega event. In addition, 1,900 international devotees from 72 nations, and over 4,000 volunteers are participating in the mega event. The grand spectacle broadcasted in 22 languages across the globe and live streamed by over 200 television channels and digital platforms. For the first time, the event is also being screened on select movie screens.

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