Hara Hara Shankara, Jaya Jaya Shankara

Hara Hara Shankara, Jaya Jaya Shankara

Monday, March 30, 2015

LAHARI - A progress flow

Progress report of LAHARI in 2014-15

LAHARI shuts down for summer. 2014-15. It has been an eventful year for LAHARI Cultural Learning. 

LAHARI is in its 10th since inception. We started it in November, 2005. It has been a great blessing  that we could reach out to children and help them increase their spirituality quotient (SQ). The number of students was an all- time high of nearly 30 children learning slokas and stories. The reason for this elation is this: Parents enrol their children in dance or music or any fine arts with the expectation that their child will reach the zenith, reach certain milestones and would be able to perform for the general public as a result of which they gain name, fame and money. They have something to look forward to. But a sloka class has no such thing. These days, competitions are conducted for sloka recitation. But most of the times it stops at that. Have we ever seen anyone reciting slokas for two hours like a music or dance concert. That is the beauty of all children and parents in LAHARI. The expectation of a material success is absent here. The intention is to learn slokas, to know our great Hindu culture and its various aspects. People coming to a class for the sole reason of knowing it is very rare. That's why I say children of LAHARI are special.

We do not teach only slokas here. We disscuss the ramayana, mahabharatha, moral stories, about different aspects of the GITA and so on. We encourage them to participate in many competitions that involve religion and spirituality. The following pictures are of LAHARI kids receiving the prizes for a quiz competition.


2014 saw the beginning of activities like “anna danam”. Children collected rice, dal in their homes. These were cooked and delicious items were made which were distributed to the maintenance and security staff of White House. We intend to make this an annual event. Donations to various vedic organisations and temple constructions were done. LAHARI also has its own blog and facebook related to spirituality and its activities. The readership on the blog touched 15000 while the facebook page has crossed 300 likes. For those who would like to have a look, here is the address of the blog: http://lahariguru.blogspot.in/

Our children also participated in chanting programs organised by Chinmaya mission. Children of LAHARI rocked the dasara celebraation in White House apartments through their fluent chanting , and mythological skits. They have also participated in many occasions pertaining to temple activities.

One of the biggest milestones was that the senior batch of students completed learning Vishnu Sahasranama. With breaks in the middle and holidays seasons coming, it took us nearly 2 years to complete. Nevertheless, these children can chant the sahasranamam effortlessly. Life is a vicious circle. So,  also is the Sahasranama. If we don't concentrate, we tend to go round and round the same lines in the chant. These children can chant this hymn in one straight go without any hiccups. I must thank them for their patience and applaud their parents for being extremely supportive. Netra, Siyani, Shalini, Vishnu, Varshini, Sukitha, Shriram and shrihari form the senior batch. Few of them are in their teens. Yet the teen fever has not caught them. They are as humble and disciplined as their parents.

The junior batch is a bubbling lot. Be it reciting the slokas or telling a story or answering questions, they are always on the edge of their seat. I always get to see a high voltage atmosphere in my house with the kids of the junior batch step in for the class. Aditya, Harish Krishna, Shri hari, saakshara, Arun, Ram Arya, Srushti, Kanika, Anvitha, Ayush, Aanya,  Ishita, Girish are all shining stars of my class.

Coming to the sub-junior class where children are as small as 6 years, these kids are fun loving and make the class very lively. Apart from chanting, they make the class merrier with the child-like talk and stories.  Nishta, Naisha, Tvisha, Vasudha, Aryaman, Arjun, Mrinal, Gunin, Amartya  are all little heroes of LAHARI.

Personally, I have been greatly benefited by teaching children. I consider it to be great blessing that GOD chose me to teach children. I don’t say this with a sense of pride for any achievement but with whole hearted gratitude. When I go out, children recognise me “Sloka” aunty, “ram ram” aunty and so on. Getting recognised by innocent ones through such names is a fulfilling experience. I get to hear about children feeling bad when they miss a class, when children do not want to compromise sloka class for another class which would probably give them more material benefit. These are very heartening to hear. It only shows the commitment and the interest that children have in knowing our culture and tradition.

Last but not the least, I must thank my husband and children for being extremely supportive and encouraging. My children also have shown equal interest in learning the slokas and the stories.

My prayer to the almighty is to give me the vigour and strength to teach these children what I know and to learn from them what I don’t know. Let me never get the sense of pride or arrogance. Help me to impart what is right without fear or favour.

May god bless all children of LAHARI with a bright and prosperous future. May they live their life with bhakti and knowledge. It is only then can one balance life through ups and downs

Looking forward for yet another eventful year…..


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