Rama Rajya Rath Yatra
With a vision of peace and prosperity permeating the entire world His Holiness Jagadguru Swami Sathyananda Saraswathi, the founder of Sree Rama Dasa Mission Universal Society and all its brother organizations, started the Sree Rama Ratha Yatra in the year 1989. It has held the states of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu in a spell of spiritual fervour every year since then. H. H. Jagadguru Swami Sathyananda Saraswathi’s seniormost disciple, His Holiness Swami Krishnananda Saraswathi, who has spearheaded his Guruji’s work in these states, has started this divine chariot procession of Lord Rama in the state of Maharashtra as well. Beginning in the year 2009, Sree Rama Ratha Yatra is held every year on the soil of Maharashtra.
The burning flame, Jyothi, is brought unextinguished from the temple of Mookambika Devi in Kollur district of Karnataka to Sree Rama Dasa Ashram, Ramagiri, Badlapur. The Jyothi is installed in the Ratha along with the Vigrahas of Shree Rama-Sita-Anjaneya, the blessed Shree Rama Paduka that Swamiji has brought from Nandigram, the Choodamani of Sita Devi brought from Sree Lanka and the Adhyatma Ramayana. Guarded on all sided by the thrilling pictures of Saints of India – Shirdi Sai Baba, Bhagavan Nityananda, Gnaneshwar Maharaj, Gajanan Maharaj, Guru Ramdasji, Swami Vivekananda, Chattambi Swamikal and Shree Narayan Gurudev – and bearing the pictures of H. H. Jagadguru Swami Sathyananda Saraswathi and His Gurudev, Brahmashree Neelakanta Gurupadar, on marches the chariot of Lord Rama!
As the Ratha travels all over Mumbai and Maharashtra, Lord Rama and His family meet the Gods and Godesses of all important temples. Regular Poojas in the Ratha destroy the evil thoughts in the hearts of men and fill them with the blissful scenes of worship. Dynamic speeches by the participants rouse awareness and nationalism in the minds of the young and old alike. H. H. Swami Krishnananda Saraswathi, the Mathadhipati of Sree Rama Dasa Ashram, Ramagiri, has propagated the triangular formula for Hindu society – Annadan, Vidyadan and Kanyadan. Annadan will protect and promote healthy life. Vidyadan will protect and promote a civilized society. Kanyadan will protect and promote the future generations. These truths and many more are broadcasted from the platform of the Lotus Feet of Lord Rama.
The Ratha Yatra reaches its climax in the natural surroundings of Sree Rama Dasa Ashram, at the banks of the Barvi river. Here the Vigraha of the Lord is bathed and then taken into the Rameshwar Mahadev temple where Lord Rama performs Abhisheka of His Ishta Devata. After that, in the main temple, Pattabhisheka is perfomed of Lord Rama, where He is attended upon by all the Devis, Devas, Brahma and Shiva.