Hindu mantras to start the day of Paradise Town Council in California

Hindu invocation (opening-prayer) is scheduled to be read on April 22 in Town Council of Paradise; which was devastated by wildfire few years back; containing verses from world’s oldest extant scripture.

Distinguished Hindu statesman Rajan Zed will deliver the invocation from ancient Sanskrit scriptures in Paradise Town Council. After Sanskrit delivery, he then will read the English interpretation of the prayers. Sanskrit is considered a sacred language in Hinduism and the root language of Indo-European languages.

Zed, who is the President of Universal Society of Hinduism, will recite 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 plans to start and end the prayer with “Om”, the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work.

Reciting from Brahadaranyakopanishad, Rajan Zed plans to say “Asato ma sad gamaya, Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya, Mrtyor mamrtam gamaya”; which he will then interpret as “Lead us from the unreal to the real, Lead us from darkness to light, and Lead us from death to immortality.” Reciting from Bhagavad-Gita, he proposes to urge town council members and others present to keep the welfare of others always in mind.

Zed, a global Hindu and interfaith leader, has been bestowed with the World Interfaith Leader Award. Zed is Senior Fellow and Religious Advisor to Foundation for Religious Diplomacy, on the Advisory Board of The Interfaith Peace Project, etc. He has been panelist for “On Faith”, a prestigious interactive conversation on religion produced by The Washington Post; and produces a weekly multi-faith panel “Faith Forum” in a Gannett publication for over 13 years.

Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about 1.2 billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. There are about three million Hindus in USA.

Ronald Lassonde and Jim Goodwin are Mayor and Town Manager respectively of Paradise, which was incorporated in 1979, and hosts oldest harvest festival of California since 1888 known as Johnny Appleseed Days. Nestled in the foothills of Sierra Nevada Mountains, scenes from a 1939 American epic historical romance film “Gone with the Wind” were filmed here. Its tagline is: May you Find Paradise to be All the Name Implies.

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