On Sunday 21st March 2021, in the interest of enabling worldwide Maitri Sangha members to celebrate Maitri Divas and accumulate precious dharma punya from home, BSDS NZ, with permission form Guru’s Central Office, lovingly hosted an online Maitri Divas Puja Programme in their newly created Maitri Altar Room.
It was decided that a livestream would be the best way to share this wonderfully auspicious event with the world, as it would allow everyone globally to participate in the puja. A schedule was soon confirmed with Guru’s Central Office, with the event planned to start at 5pm (New Zealand time) lasting for around 6 hours, with one 90 minute break. The start time was carefully chosen to ensure that the puja time would be convenient for as many countries and continents as possible, welcoming all worldwide sangha to join in.
The Puja began with the mantras playing and 21 prostrations by each sangha member. Water, flowers, fruit, lights and incense were then reverently offered, done so in the order as in the offering prayers. The full prayers were then chanted, followed by four repeats of the Maha Maitri Marga Gyawi Prayer, noting that Maitri Divas celebrates the birthday of Maha Maitri Marga Gyawi and it is for this reason that extra prayers were dedicated to this specific Paramatma Guru. During the last set of Maitri Prayers, a 25 minute silent period of mala jap was completed, where the Maha Maitri Marga Gyawi mantra “Sonwa Nehi Nigma Gyawi Gyate Gyawi Yendig Nyende Nigma” was repeated continuously.
In the second half of the Puja, after the meal break, further prostrations were reverently offered before continuing the chanting of the Maha Maitri Marga Gyawi Prayer, three times. This was then followed by the remaining Paramatma Guru Prayers (Sei Seinyig Marga Gyawi to Nomyun Gyawi) and then finished with the Blessing Prayer and Closing Prayer which concluded the Puja event.
The mantras were then played to signify the end of the Puja and slowly, over the next 20 minutes or so, the lights were dimmed in the altar room showcasing the beautiful flittering lights on the altar.
On this remarkably auspicious day, over 500 people tuned into the broadcast, from a variety of different countries. Many people said that they experienced a beautiful and loving feeling during the event and in the days that followed.
It was truly an honour for BSDS NZ to host such an auspicious event and it was deeply humbling that the worldwide Maitri Sangha could come together on this special day, to pay homage to the Paramatma Gurus, and abundantly accumulate dharma punya for the liberation of all beings.
With great reverence, we bow down to Mahasambodhi Dharmasangha Guru and all of the Paramatma Gurus, and we lovingly thank all of the Maitri volunteers who donated their time, energy and resources to this event.
May all beings may attain mukti & moksha!
Photos from the 2021 Maitri Divas Online Event:
The 2021 Maitri Divas Online Puja Event Video: