1st Hindu invocation of bankrupt Stockton City Council prayed for its fiscal health
Stockton City Council in California (USA) had its first Hindu invocation on July 10, which was nearly 162 years since the city was incorporated.
Acclaimed Hindu statesman Rajan Zed, who delivered invocation from ancient Sanskrit scriptures before the City Council, commented in the beginning of the prayer: “It is a historical and special invocation as we are invoking God through ancient Sanskrit scriptures to help City of Stockton hoping that it comes out even stronger through these challenging times.”
Stockton recently became the largest American city ever to declare bankruptcy.
After Sanskrit delivery, Zed, who is President of Universal Society of Hinduism, then read the English translation of the prayer. Sanskrit is considered a sacred language in Hinduism and root language of Indo-European languages.
Rajan Zed recited from Rig-Veda, the oldest scripture of the world still in common use, besides lines from Upanishads and Bhagavad-Gita (Song of the Lord), both ancient Hindu scriptures. He started and ended the prayer with “Om”, the mystical syllable containing the universe, which in Hinduism is used to introduce and conclude religious work.
Reciting from Brahadaranyakopanishad, Zed said “Asato ma sad gamaya, Tamaso ma jyotir gamaya, Mrtyor mamrtam gamaya”, which he then translated as “Lead me from the unreal to the Real, Lead me from darkness to Light, and Lead me from death to Immortality.” Reciting from Bhagavad-Gita, Zed urged councilmembers to keep the welfare of others always in mind.
Wearing saffron colored attire, a ruddraksh mala (rosary), and traditional sandalpaste tilak (religious mark) on the forehead, Rajan Zed presented a copy of Bhagavad-Gita to Mayor Ann Johnston, who welcomed and thanked Zed. Councilmembers, city employees and public were seen standing in prayer mode with their heads bowed down during this invocation.
Zed is a global Hindu and interfaith leader, who besides taking up the cause of religion worldwide, has also raised huge voice against the apartheid faced by about 15-million Roma (Gypsies) in Europe. Bestowed with World Interfaith Leader Award; Zed is Senior Fellow and Religious Advisor to Foundation for Religious Diplomacy, Spiritual Advisor to National Association of Interchurch & Interfaith Families, etc.