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Bengali New Year For All?

Date: Sun, 15 Apr 2012 18:30:12 -0000
Subject: Bengali New Year For All?
From: Gopal_Mukharjee@security-net...




On 14 April, respected Dada Kalyaneshvarananda of Tiljala announced to one and all the coming of the Bengali New Year. With due diligence and respect, let's take a moment to think and consider this announcement.


1) Our Caryacarya scripture is to be applied rationally across time, space, and person. For instance, one of our Ananda Marga festivals is Spring Festival, yet who can think that those in the southern hemisphere should observe spring festival the same day as those in the northern hemisphere. Because when spring is starting in the northern hemisphere then fall is starting in the southern hemisphere. Thus it would be silly and irrational for countries in the the southern hemisphere like Australia, Brazil, South Africa, and Argentina to celebrate spring according to the calendar date of countries in the northern hemisphere like Norway, Canada, Russia, and India. By this we can understand that the whole globe cannot follow one particular day for spring festival etc.


2) Similarly, the Bengali new year is for our Bengal – only. It is not meant for those other areas, regions, states, or countries. No one in the Tiljala faction should have the idea that the rest of the globe should also celebrate our Bengali new year.

3) Think about it. How would we feel here in Bengal if we were asked to celebrate the Cuban new year or the Greek new year. Probably we would not be inspired to celebrate that day. Similarly those outside our Bengal have little or no interest in celebrating the Bengali new year. Because it is a regional festival, not a universal one.

4) The situation is just like if someone living in a cold country in wintertime declared that everyone on the earth must wear heavy jackets. Then those living in tropical areas would laugh at such a suggestion. Because where they live the temperature is quite hot. So why should they wear an insulated snow jacket simply because someone in the depths of winter in a cold country makes such a proclamation.

5) The occasion of the Bengali new year is for Bengal – period.


6) Baba has already declared the international date of 1st January as the day of New Year’s celebration for our universal AM society. On that day, Baba would give the Ananda Vanii and hold DMC. So that is our New Year’s Day.

7) In Baba’s below Ananda Vanii it is quite clear that January 1st is our day of celebration for New Year’s:

“Struggle against evil forces is life. We have to remember this fact once again on this threshold of a happy New Year.” (Ananda Vanii #9,  1 January 1959)


8) As you may know, one approach in our Marga has been to select Ananda Purnima as New Year's Day and construct the calendar around the date of the advent of Mahasambhuti Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji in human form. To that end, some of the early magazines published in the Marga featured this approach. Such magazines were dated using the day of Mahasambhuti Baba's advent as the starting point of the calendar year. That was called Ananda Yuga. This was the regular style for some of those early magazines. By this approach of making Ananda Purnima as New Year's Day, the New Year marks the date of Mahasambhuti’s advent on this earth. That gives everyone a constant reminder of Baba’s eternal and divine presence. As the teachings of Ananda Marga spread, this approach may gain widespread popularity.


9) The overall idea is that ours is a rational society and we are to apply Baba’s teachings in a rational way. Here in Bengal, we will most certainly celebrate the Bengali New Year. But to expect that the rest of the world should also rejoice is not only unrealistic but against the sentiments of the people. No doubt Dadaji means well, but it should be clear to all that the Bengali New Year is for the people of Bengal - and should not be imposed on others. Naturally all brothers and sisters from our universal AM family should have full freedom to celebrate New Year's accordingly.

10) Please write in with your thoughts.

Gopal Mukharjee


Although not stated explicitly, the underlying message of Kalyaneshvaranandji's email was that all should celebrate the Bengali New Year. The proof is that his email incited an involved discussion on one margii email forum about how around the world everyone should celebrate the Bengali New Year.

I have great regard for Dadaji on an individual level, yet feel that in our universal AM society each area should celebrate and honor their own local and regional customs, so long as they are consistent with AM ideals. Keeping this in mind, it does not make sense for margiis around the world to celebrate our Bengali New Year, just as it does not make sense for members of the various samajas to sing our A'mara' Bengali songs. Rather they should sing songs of their own samaj, and they should be allowed to celebrate the New Year according to their region.

Let us never forget Baba's Proutistic guideline, "universal in spirit but regional in approach." (A Few Problems Solved - 9, Socio-Economic Groupifications)


"A'laker saurrathe saba'y nite tumi esecho..."  - P.S. 1089


Baba, O' my Parama Purusa, You have come with the shining chariot of divine effulgence. You have come to take everyone to the divine realm. You do not differentiate between who is great, who is meagre, & who is small etc. You listen to everyone's tales - to everyone's feeling of the heart.

Baba, O' Divine Entity, even without seeing You, I have loved You. By Your grace, I am always feeling close & loving towards You. And even when I have not heard about You, I have been attracted by Your divinity. Baba, You are so gracious. You do not make judgments based on one's merits or demerits. You love all, unconditionally. And I understand that You are always present - across all time and space.

O' my Dearmost, You have done so much for me, and in return You do not want anything. In spite of knowing about the hundreds of defects in me, You have made me Yours and accepted me as Your own.

Baba, You have showered Your causeless grace on me. You have come here on this dusty earth to bring everyone onto the path of divinity. Baba, You are so gracious...

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