Sanskrit mantras in a Christian church on Thanksgiving

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Washington, Nov 23 (UNI) Recitations from ancient Hindu scriptures reverberated in a Christian church in Nevada on the occasion of Thanksgiving eve service.

Thanksgiving is a major national holiday in US when families come together and many churches are open for special services. First Thanksgiving service by Europeans in North America occurred in 1578 but native people held harvest festivals long before.

Rajan Zed, the prominent Hindu chaplain, read from 'Rig Veda' (oldest existing scripture of the world dated from around 1,500 BC), 'Upanishad'(Hindu scripture containing mystical teachings), and 'Bhagavad Gita'(famous philosophical and spiritual poem) in Trinity Episcopal Church in Reno, Nevada, during Twenty-second Annual Thanksgiving Service of Northwestern Nevada held on Wednesday evening.

Starting with 'Gayatri Mantra', Zed read from chapter two of 'Bhagavad-Gita', talking about actions and actions' fruits and chapter ten of 'Rig Veda', praying for unity in resolve and hearts.

His verse from 'Brahadaranyakopanisad' ('Asato ma sad gamaya, Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya, Mrityor mamratam gamaya') meaning ''Lead me from the unreal to the Real, Lead me from darkness to Light, Lead me from death to immortality'', was well received by the audience belonging to different faiths which jam-packed the Church hall.

Various faith traditions in northwestern Nevada came together to share the spirit of love on Thanksgiving, Zed said. 'Shanti-Shanti', the only Sanskrit rock band of the world, performed on the occasion.

Right Reverend Gene Savoy Jr, Bishop of International Community of Christ, discussed the issue of ''Giving Thanks in a Challenging World''. A procession of the clergy dressed in an array of religious garb was held before the service.

UNI

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