Sanskrit mantras opened 100th anniversary of Scouting event in Nevada

Sunday, October 17, 2010

NEVADA - University of Scouting opened its day of training seminars to commemorate 100th anniversary of Scouting with prayers from ancient Hindu scriptures at Reno (Nevada, USA) on October 16.

Hindu statesman Rajan Zed delivered invocation from Sanskrit scriptures before an assembly of leaders and parents from various Scouting programs on this day. After Sanskrit delivery, he then read the English translation of the prayer. Sanskrit is considered a sacred language in Hinduism and root language of Indo-European languages.

Zed, who is the president of Universal Society of Hinduism, recited from Rig-Veda, the oldest scripture of the world still in common use, besides lines from Upanishads and Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord), both ancient Hindu scriptures. He started and ended the prayer with “Om”, the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work.

Scouting attendees stood quietly in prayer mode during the invocation. Wearing saffron colored attire, a ruddraksh mala (rosary), and traditional sandalpaste tilak (religious mark) on the forehead, Rajan Zed sprinkled few drops of sacred water from river Ganga in India around before the prayer.

Reciting from Taittiriya Upanishad, Rajan Zed said “Om saha naavavatu, Saha nau bhunaktu, Saha viiryan karavaavahai, Tejasvi naavadhiitamastu, Maa vidhvishhaavahai”, which he then translated as “May we be protected together, May we be nourished together, May we work together with great vigor, May our study be enlightening, May no obstacle arise between us.” Reciting from Bhagavad-Gita, he urged participants to strive constantly to serve the welfare of the world.

Chris Harvey, District Membership Chairman of Boy Scouts of America (BSA), introduced Zed, while Marty Baldwin, BSA Scout Executive, thanked Zed at his invocation at Bishop Manogue Catholic High School auditorium. Thirty-eight training seminars were scheduled to be held on this day, including Religious Emblems in Catholics and Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, dealing with difficult people, utensiless cooking, venturing, outdoors skills, etc.

BSA is one of the nation’s largest and most prominent values-based youth development organizations headquartered in Irving (Texas, USA) with Robert “Bob” Mazzuca as Chief Scout Executive. Incorporated in 1910, it claims to have served over 114 million youths. One of the BSA publications says: “A Scout is reverent. He is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties and respects the convictions of others in matters of custom and religion.”

Rajan Zed is one of the panelists for “On Faith”, a prestigious interactive conversation on religion produced by The Washington Post. He has been awarded “World Interfaith Leader Award” by National Association of Interchurch and Interfaith Families.

Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. (ANI)

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