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JVB Preksha Meditation Center Gears up for Annual Paryushan Mahaparva Festival

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By Seema Jain

HOUSTON: Generally, festivals are celebrations and jubilations characterized by excitement, enthusiasm, enjoyments and entertainments; but the Jain festivals are characterized by renunciation, austerities, study of the scriptures, repetition of holy hymns, meditation, and expressing devotion for the Paramatma. Even those people who are caught in the meshes of mundane life, according to their ability and conveniences, get free from the worldly entanglements to the extent possible and become immersed in worship and meditation. Renunciation and austerity constitute the very foundation of the Jain Dharma.

The Paryushan is the most important festival among the Jain festivals; and it is observed during every Chaturmas in the month of  Bhadrapad (August – September ). During these eight days, the entire Jain Community becomes spellbound in an atmosphere of enthusiasm and felicity. Jains, the young and the old try to perform fasting according to their capacity from one day fasting to Atthai Tap – fasting for eight days at a time. Some men and women; and even children take the vow of Paushadh Vrat also during these eight days. During these days, the spiritual preceptors explain in detail the life history of Tirthankar Mahaveer, the last Tirthankar (prophet) of 24 Tirthankars in Jain Dharma. All the members of the congregation listen to that explanation, overwhelmed with the emotion of devotion. Seven days are days of attainment and the eighth day is one of fulfillment or achievement. In this manner, the Samvatsari Mahaparva is celebrated. Performing the Samvatsarik Pratikraman, for seeking the forgiveness of those people whom one hates or against whom one nurses a grudge; forgetting all hatred constitute the Samvatsarik aradhana -the annual atonement.

This year, JVB Preksha Meditation Center will host Annual Paryushan Mahaparva at itspremises under the auspicious guidance of Samani Sanmati Pragyaji & Samani Jayant Pragayaji (Disciples of Acharya Shri Mahashraman). The 8-day long festivities will begin on August 22 and will conclude on August 29, and will be held inside its Pyramid Hall. The daily discourses would be based on Jain Agamas from 10:30AM – 11:30AM ( Morning Session) and 8:00PM – 9:00 PM ( Evening Session ). Evening Session will start @ 7:00 PM sharp with Pratikraman every day. Parallel Sessions for kids will also be conducted every Evening.

The JVB Presksha Meditation Center conducts regular Preksha Meditation sessions which is the practice of purifying our emotions, consciousness and realizing our own self. Mediation augurs attitudinal change, behavioral modification and integrated development of one’s personality. Started in 1970, Preksha Meditation is the result of the untiring efforts of Ganadhipati Tulsi and Acharya Mahapragya.  Preksha Meditation is for everyone, irrespective of his or her race, religion, language, color, gender and belief.

JVB Preksha Meditation Center is home to a specially designed Preksha Dhyan ‘Pyramid’ Meditation Hall and is located at 14102 Schiller Rd, Houston, TX 77082. Upcoming events include Mega Blood Donation Drive in partnership with Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center on September 6th from 10:00 AM- 4PM to celebrate Acharya Tulsi’s birth centennial year. To Join this noble cause and for further information visit www.Jvbhouston.org or info@jvbhouston.org or you can reach us @ 281-596-9642.

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