Holy Pilgrimage - Hindu temples in USA -124

Holy Pilgrimage - Hindu temples in USA  

Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America, Troy, MI
(Congress of Arya Samaj in North America – Established in 1990)

Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America
Ved Niketan
224 Florence Street
Troy, MI 48098
United States of America
Email: info@aryasamaj.com
Tel: (248) 879-2531 / (248) 703-1549

About Us

Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America is a central body representing all Arya Samajs and Vedic Temples of North America. It was formed under the state of Michigan Charter in 1991. The purpose of this organization is to form and  maintain a network of communication and ideas between Arya Samaj/Vedic Organizations, in USA, Canada and other parts of North America to follow and propagate Hindu-Vedic religion.
The Arya Samaj is a society that cultivates strong ethical and moral values as well as advocates peaceful and productive human living.  The organization is a global community whose members wish to be noble and are united in their unwavering devotion to the Universal Truth.  The society promotes love, justice and righteousness towards all, irrespective of race, caste or creed, and follows the principles espoused in the Vedas, which are universally true for all of mankind.
Arya Samaj was established by Swami Dayanand Saraswati in the year 1875 to get rid of social evils of Hindu society. Arya Samaj is a bona fide Hindu-Vedic organization. It is non-denominational authentic Hindu-Vedic religious organization dedicated to remove superstition, orthodoxy and social evils such as un-touchability etc., from society.
It is established to propagate true pristine knowledge enshrined in Vedas. To educate women and downtrodden of society, Arya Samaj opened many educational institutions such as schools, colleges, technical institutions such as medical and engineering colleges and universities. It encouraged Hindu interdenominational marriages and also widow remarriages. Arya Samaj intellectuals and followers successfully achieved the goals of bringing equality of all sections of society and helped achieve the independence of India from British rule. Wherever Hindus migrated in the world, they established Arya Samaj.
Arya Samaj is pure Hindu organization that teaches the true Vedic religion the basics of Hindu religion.

Principles of Arya Samaj

1. God is the efficient cause of all true knowledge and all that is known through knowledge.
2. God is existent, intelligent and blissful. He is formless, omniscient, just, merciful, unborn, endless, unchangeable, beginning-less, unequalled, the support of all, the master of all, omnipresent, immanent, un-aging, immortal, fearless, eternal and holy, and the maker of all. He alone is worthy of being worshiped.
3. The Vedas are the scriptures of all true knowledge. It is the paramount duty of all Aryas to read them, teach them, recite them and to hear them being read.
4. One should always be ready to accept truth and to renounce untruth.
5. All acts should be performed in accordance with Dharma that is, after deliberating what is right and wrong.
6. The prime object of the Arya Samaj is to do good to the world, that is, to promote physical, spiritual and social good of everyone.
7. Our conduct towards all should be guided by love, righteousness and justice.
8. We should dispel Avidya (ignorance) and promote Vidya (knowledge).
9. No one should be content with promoting his/her good only; on the contrary, one should look for his/her good in promoting the good of all.
10. One should regard oneself under restriction to follow the rules of society calculated to promote the well being of all, while in following the rules of individual welfare all should be free.

Vedic Wedding Ceremony

Swagat & Introduction (Welcome)
Welcome and greetings are extended to the bridegroom, bride, family and friends.
Kanya Agaman (Arrival of the Bride)
The bridesmaids and the father escort the bride to the Mandap (nuptial canopy).
Jai Mala (Exchange of Garlands)
The priest guides the couple to the Mandap (nuptial canopy). Bride welcomes Groom with a floral garland and Groom garlands Bride. This exchange symbolizes formal acceptance and respect.
Prarthna Mantra (Prayer)
Chanting of the great Gayatri mantra to invoke the blessings of the supreme Lord.
Madhupak (Offerings)
Bride offers the mixture of honey and yogurt to the groom. Honey symbolizes the sweetness of eternal love and yogurt for the sake of his eternal good health and nutrition.
Aachman (Purification)
Sipping the water three times for the purification of the heart and body.
Agni Pradipan
Kindling of sacred fire. The wedding is made solemn before Agni (fire), the symbol of knowledge, power, and purity, as a principle witnesses to the ceremony.
Kanya Daan (Giving hand of bride)
The prime wealth of a Hindu household is the daughter (Kanya), who symbolizes the Hindu Goddess of Wealth (Lakshmi). Bride’s parents will place her hands into Groom’s and pour holy water over them to finalize the gesture of gift giving (transfer of wealth). Bride’s father requests Groom to accept his daughter as an equal partner in all walks of life. It is noted in Vedic scriptures that there is no “Daana” (gift) greater than Kanya Daan (giving a daughters hand in marriage). Groom promises to accept Bride as his equal life partner.
Jaya Home (Offerings)
Offerings in to sacred tire emphasize the couples’ joint responsibility in maintaining the love and dignity of their union.
Paani Graham (Accepting the Hand)
The bridegroom holds the hand of the bride and both of them solemnly pledge before God that they have become one and will forever love each other and remain mutually devoted for the remainder of their lives.
Pledges (Exchange of vows)
The priest reads the solemn union declaration. The bride and bridegroom exchange the holy marriage vows.
    • Groom: I take your hand in mine, for the attainment of prosperity and offspring. May you enjoy long life and happiness with me. By the grace of God and blessings o fall assembled, you have become my life partner and wife. You are my lawful wife and I am your lawful husband.
    • Bride: I take your hand in mine in pursuit of righteousness for the benefit of both our families. I will stand by you. May we be provided with prosperity and offspring and may I keep you splendidly radiant as the rays of the sun.
Mangal Phera
Bride’s brother puts rice in the hands of Bride & Groom to offer to Agni (the Lord of Fire) who dispels darkness and ignorance while leading into light and knowledge. The couple then walks around the sacred fire. Each round represents the four basic goals of human life:
  • Dharma: Moral sense to lead a good life
  • Artha: Financial prosperity
  • Kama: Blessing for strong, virtuous children and to share the responsibilities of home
  • Moksha: Self restraint and eternal physical, mental and spiritual strength Together the four goals symbolize the couple’s commitment to each other, the community and the cosmos. During the first three rounds Bride leads Groom and during the last round Groom leads.
Shila Rohan
A rock is placed in the north east comer of the Mandap. While Bride places her right foot on the piece of rock, Groom recites a hymn the Ashma Bhava. The statement is to encourage his wife to be as strong as the rock, to be firm towards any difficulties of life they may face together. Rice and flowers are sprinkled on the couple by her parents, relatives and friends.
Saptapadi (Seven steps)
The bride and groom take seven steps forward together, symbolizing the beginning of their journey through life. These steps signify the guiding principles of life.
Each of these steps represents the vows made by the couple:
1.   Together we will love, cherish and respect one another from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness or in health … forever.
2.   Together we will create a home full of joy and laughter, where we find serenity and strength.
3.   Together we will share a steadily deepening love, which grows in understanding and unselfishness.
4.   Together we will embrace each other’s family as well as our own yet to come. Let us have a measure of patience and forgive with grace.
5.   Together we will develop a sense of value that we may care for people more than possessions, for honor more than honors, and for the dimensions of a home more than the details of a house.
6.   With our sixth step together, we pray to God for a healthy and disease free life for us and our families. Together we will live a balanced and harmonious life.
7.   Let us forever be best friends and partners, share each other’s ideas and ideals. The couple is now united and will pray for the blessings from God. The father-in-law offers the bride a sacred necklace.
Sindhoor Daan
The bridegroom puts Sindhoor (Red Powder) in the parting of the bride’s hair and welcomes her into his life as his eternal partner. The newly wedded couple touches the feet and takes blessings from the parents of both families.
Akhand Subhagyavati
Married women from the bride’s family come forth to wish her eternal happiness.
All guests and relatives recite a hymn with the priest to wish the couple good luck, prosperity and a long, happy married life together.
Shanti Path
Hymn of peace
Dear God, You are our Supreme Father and similar to a good caring biological father protects his children, You are our Protector and Guide in life. Dear God, You are Agnay-the Supreme Light that exists everywhere in the universe including inside our soul and You constantly teach, enlighten, inspire, guide and lead us to follow truth and virtue in life. Dear God, guide and direct us to such a path so that we (our souls) can easily realize You and directly learn and gain knowledge as well as wisdom from You. With this experience may our mind become full of virtuous thoughts and generosity towards others. Thus inspired, may we perform such virtuous actions that promote the welfare of both an individual and his/her family as well as our society and the nation.

In the world, the male biologic person who is the cause of our birth as well as who protects and nurtures us (or at least is supposed to) is called our father. Similarly, all male persons who protect and nurture us in life are also worthy of being called our fathers and this includes our grandparents, relatives such as uncles, teachers and learned mentors. Dear God, however, You the Creator, Protector, Maintainer, Nurturer and Administrator of the whole universe are the Father of all fathers, You have been our Supreme Father since eternity.

Dear God, You are Agnay-the Supreme Light that exists everywhere in the universe including inside our soul and You constantly enlighten, inspire, guide and lead us to follow truth and virtue. You are our Ultimate Leader. Dear God, You are our Supreme Father. You are our Supreme Protector and Guide in life like a human father protects and nurtures his children.  Some biological fathers due to ignorance, selfishness or greed at times teach their children to lie, cheat, be unjust or cruel and misguide them to do sinful things for an apparent transient physical gains in life. Dear God, such faults, however, never apply to You because You are always thinking of our true welfare and never guide us in the wrong direction for momentary gains. Instead, whenever, we even have a desire in our mind to do something wrong or sinful such as lying, stealing, hate etc, You create in our mind doubt, shame or fear and an aversion in us toward such thoughts and behavior, advising us to change our course towards the right path. Also, whenever we plan and/or execute something good You inspire our soul and mind with encouragement, fearlessness and joy.

O Omnipresent God and Inspirer to our soul, there are many occasions when our biological fathers see us suffering physically or mentally but feel helpless in being able to assist us. They stand still, immobile like a statue, with limp hands and a bent head unable to help us even though they watch and observe us with wide open eyes. Some other parents even purposely ignore their children under similar circumstances because they do not want to get involved for the pain and unhappiness it may cause themselves. Dear God, there are occasionally such disgusting incidents where  biological fathers for the sake of their financial security or pseudo-honor disown their children and leave them in the clutches of death and rarely even facilitate their children's suffering and/or death. Similarly, although teachers, policemen(women), lawyers, judges, physicians etc like our biologic parents are supposed to protect us, at times they become our exploiters. Dear God, even in such circumstances, You are our Supreme Father, Protector and Guide; please inspire our soul and mind and give us strength and courage so that we do not deviate from the truth or the right path and are able to overcome our fears and suffering.

Dear God, whatever nurturing our real parents as well as other surrogates do for our welfare, it is because You have granted them wisdom and resources to succeed. They have learnt their virtuous values directly or indirectly from the teachings of the Vedas, otherwise without Your help they are incapable of providing us any nurturing. O our Eternal Father! Our laukik fathers i.e. biologic parents, elders and guardians at times are able to guide us correctly and fulfill our deserving wishes but at other times they fail to meet their proper responsibilities. Our Supreme Father, however, You always, every moment of our life are our soul's Constant Companion and as such inspire, guide, help and nurture us so that we may not go astray.

Dear God, this is our humble prayer to You that just as virtuous parents and teachers protect, guide and nurture young children, similarly may You also be easily available to us, protect and inspire us to live a virtuous life. Fill up our hearts and minds with enthusiasm, courage and strength so that we may have high ideals in our personal lives as well as doing good to others. May we feeling secure under Your shelter spend our life for the welfare and uplift of others, the nation and the world. Dear God You are Supreme Light and Our Ultimate Father, may You always inspire us to do our part to fulfill this prayer.

(This mantra has been reprinted with minor modifications from Acharya Gyaneshwar Arya Ji's book Ved Prarthana in Hindi and its English Translation by Sudhir Anand. The English Translation was published in August 2012 by Vaanprashtha Saadhak Aashram.)

5450 Daniels Drive, Troy MI 48098

Respected Arya
On behalf of the Arya community of United States and Canada including the Board of
Directors of Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America, it is my distinct pleasure and privilege to invite
you all
reat souls to the upcoming annual get together of
the representatives, leaders of
Arya Samaj and other well
wishers of Arya Samaj movement in USA and Canada. It is
hard to believe that
tradition of this annual
started 23 y
ago by the able
leaders with vision, who still continue to be an ac
tive part of this organization and provide
guidance and
a strong
sense of direction for its future.
This will be the third time we will be
meeting in Canada.
I have had the privilege
of remaining an integral member of this organization for the last
twenty years and am proud to say that my family and I have not missed a single
sammelan since
. The mai
n goal of this sammelan each and every year has been to gather
these great souls, even just for four days a year
The main focus all along has been to find
ways to increase youth involvement
to inculcate
vedic values in them,
and to prepare
youth leaders for propagation of
vedic ideology and
away of living for the betterment of
the upcoming generations. It appears
that over the period of
the last few years
, we
have been partially successful in progressing on the path of achieving this goal.
When we look in to the days of glory of Arya Samaj in the several decades following the
departure of Swami Dayanand, in whatever shape or form the Arya Samaj exists today
appears meager and disappointing.
To me, however
, a few things become very clear.
Essentially all denominations and faiths within the H
indu community depend either on the
murti worship or there is a one particular final authority under whose leadership
the particular faith/group exists. Arya Samaj is based on perfectly solid and ever true Vedic
principles and is present globally without the governance by a particular authority or a
boss. Although we can be proud of the global and eternal principles we follow
, we lack in
the spread of the Vedic
message among the Hindu masses
rest of the humanity at
large. The only way to make a difference in a system is to be a part of the system rather
than being away from it and simply be critical of it. As I can see it, APSA is the only body
in existence in the Americas which can provide
is leadership. I respectfully request every
one of you to come with family and friends in order to make this sammelan a grand
success and make the body even stronger so that it becomes
the stepping stone for the
Arya Samaj movement in western world.

kind regards to all
Ramesh Gupta MD

Directory in India

Delhi Arya Pratinidhi Sabha
15 Hanuman Road, New Delhi 110001

Arya Samaj – Gandhidham
Maharshi Dayanand Marg,
Near, Zanda Chowk,
Gandhidham – 370 201 Kutch. (INDIA)
Phone: +91.2836.231223,
Fax: +91.2836.239674
web: http://www.aryagan.org/
Email: aryagan@aryagan.org


Q: When was Arya Samaj founded?
A: Arya Samaj was founded on April 7th, 1875 at Bombay, India, by Maharishi Dayanand Saraswati
Q: What was the purpose of Arya Samaj?
A: Arya Samaj was founded in the pre-independence era of India. The purpose was to move the Hindu Dharma away from all the fictitious beliefs, and go back to the teachings of Vedas.
Q: What is the primary goal of Arya Samaj?
A: The goal of the Arya Samaj has always been, Krinvanto Vishvam Aryam – Make This World Noble.
Q: On what principles is Arya Samaj based?
A: Arya Samaj is based on the basic teachings of Vedas. These teachings are summarized in 10 basic principles.
Q: What is the role of Arya Samaj in the 1990s and beyond?
A: The role of Arya Samaj in the 1990s and beyond is very important. Arya Samaj today strives to promote, preserve, and realize the Vedic heritage.
Q: Is Arya Samaj active outside India?
A: The Arya Samaj organization is live and sound in all parts of the world. Arya Samaj has branches in North America, Europe, Asia, Africa and in Australia.
Q: What role does Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America play in North America?
A: Arya Samaj in United States and Canada is a big movement. Almost all big cities of these two North American countries have Arya Samaj branches. Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America is a network of all Arya Samajs in North America.
Annually, the Sabha meets at its flagship event, the Arya Maha Sammelan. The first Sammelan was held in Detroit in 1991. These conferences are an opportunity for Arya leaders to gather and set the agenda for Ved Prachar. Sammelans have been held in Toronto, Chicago, New York, New Jersey, Orlando, Los Angeles, Houston, Dallas, Cleveland, Vancouver, Atlanta, and Detroit.
Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America is very active in forming new Arya Samaj chapters around the country. Constant work is being done to progress is this goal. Sabha also maintains a library of books and literature related to Arya Samaj. It also contains audio and video volumes of Bhajans. A list can be obtained by contacting our Prachar Vibhag at girish@aryasamaj.com
Arya Pratinidhi Sabha America
Ved Niketan
224 Florence Street
Troy, MI 48098
United States of America
Email: info@aryasamaj.com
Tel: (248) 879-2531 / (248) 703-1549


Om Tat Sat

(My humble  salutations to the great devotees ,  wikisources  and Pilgrimage tourist guide for the collection )


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