Category: South Asians Abroad Published on Saturday, 14 July 2012 12:33 Written by Tapa Menon
Madera City Council in California (USA), incorporated in 1907, will have its first Hindu invocation on July 18, containing verses from world’s oldest existing scripture.
Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed will deliver the invocation from ancient Sanskrit scriptures before the City Council. After Sanskrit delivery, he then will 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, 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 translate as “Lead me from the unreal to the Real, Lead me from darkness to Light, and Lead me from death to Immortality.” Reciting from Bhagavad-Gita, he proposes to urge councilmembers to keep the welfare of others always in mind.
Hinduism, oldest and third largest religion of the world, has about one billion adherents and moksh (liberation) is its ultimate goal. There are about three million Hindus in USA.
"Born from the Timber Industry", Madera which means "wood or timber" in Spanish, is home to “pair of Palm Tree & Redwood” marking the center of South and North California. Prominent people associated with it include recording artist Bill Aken, space science writer Kelly Beatty and women’s Mixed Martial Arts champion Zoila Frausto. Brett Frazier, Andrew J. Medellin and David Tooley are Mayor, Mayor Pro Tem and City Administrator respectively.