Sri Sri Ravi Shankar lovingly called as Guruji, the founder of Art of Living Foundation through which He relieves the stress at individual levels, thus reducing violence, sufferings and conflicts and spreading the love, harmony, peace throughout the world in various societies.
The message of Janmashtami is simply this: when Lord Krishna is born, there is joy and celebration everywhere. Every heart, every mind, every home is filled with joy and happiness.
Tomorrow we shall celebrate Annakuut (a festival in Gujarat that celebrates Lord Krishna’s birth with cooking various dishes as an offering of gratitude and joy).
The birth of Lord Krishna is the birth of joy, because Krishna is absolute joy. We celebrate this days with dance and music, and there is so much joy in every heart, in every mind, and in every home. And this is the best way to celebrate the birth of Lord Krishna. I think it has already happened here! Everyone is so happy and everyone is dancing with joy.
Tomorrow is usually celebrated as Annakuut. People make so many varieties of food. The whole Gujarat team has arrived here and they have prepared hundreds of varieties of food items. That shows the abundance. The feeling behind this is that there is so much abundance; there is enough food for everyone. So on this day, grow enough food and distribute enough food. Nobody goes hungry on this day – either in body or in spirit.
The abundance on the physical plane is celebrated by abundant food. We celebrate our well-being and prosperity and there is also joy and celebration in the mind. So there is food for the body, and there is also knowledge – which is the food for the soul. That makes life complete.
You know, Lord Krishna and the Mother Divine were both born on the same day of Ashtami (also a day of special significance during the Navratri celebrations). You all would know this. So, the Mother Divine took a physical form, but when the evil King Kamsa tried to grab hold of her, She freed Herself from Kamsa’s hands and disappeared into the skies. The essence here is that the ego cannot capture or trap Shakti – the Divine energy (represented here by the Mother Divine). It may appear that ego can trap Shakti, but it is not so. Ego can neither capture bliss (represented by Lord Krishna), nor can it capture Shakti. This is the message of Janmashtami. Both Lord Krishna and the Mother Divine were born on the same day.
Lord Krishna was never truly born (here referring to the Lord as the Supreme all-pervading eternal Consciousness). He is regarded as eternal and unborn. So to celebrate the birth of that which is never truly born, people usually have grand festivities and celebrations on this day with a lot of joy. And this will go on forever, there is no end to it.
The land of Gujarat has always echoed with the sounds of 'Jai Shri Krishna!' (Meaning: Praises to Lord Krishna!) You all have brought (the spirit of) Gujarat right here to Bangalore! Even I am looking like a Gurjarati in this attire (Laughter).