Ayodhya, Jan 13: The prominent spiritual leaders of Sanatan Hindu Dharma, the four Shankaracharyas, have chosen to abstain from participating in the 'pran prathistha' (consecration) ceremony of the idol of Lord Ram in Ayodhya on January 22.
While three of them express support for the event, they simultaneously voice reservations about the rituals being observed.
The Opposition has raised questions about the absence of these esteemed spiritual leaders from the grand ceremony, despite the Shankaracharyas clarifying that their decision is not a rejection of their reverence for Lord Ram, and neither is it an expression of being "anti-Modi." The Shankaracharyas have refuted media reports that inaccurately suggested their opposition to the consecration ceremony.
Who are the Shankaracharyas?
They lead the four principal monasteries or mutts established by the eighth-century Hindu saint Adi Shankara, a follower of Hinduism's Advaita Vedanta tradition. The four mutts are Jyotir Math (Joshimath, Uttarakhand), Govardhan Math (Puri, Odisha), Sringeri Sharada Peetham (Sringeri, Karnataka), and Dwarka Sharada Peetham (Dwarka, Gujarat), all revered pilgrimage destinations in India.
Regarding the Ram temple inauguration, the issue gained attention when Swami Nishchalanand Saraswati, the Shankaracharya of Puri's Govardhan math, expressed his decision to skip the event, citing that the consecration rituals went against the scriptures.
In a viral video, he emphasized the need for adherence to scriptures for honoring Lord Ram and stated that while he would not protest, he would not attend either.
Jyotir Math Shankaracharya Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati later asserted that the temple inauguration rituals were not in line with the shastras. He objected to comments made by Champat Rai, the general secretary of the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teerth Kshetra, suggesting that temple management be handed over to the Ramanand community before the consecration event.
Responding to false information, Shankaracharya of Shringeri Peeth, Swami Bharati Teerth, and Shankaracharya of Dwarka Peeth, Swami Sadananda Sarswati, clarified that they are not against the 'pran prathistha' ceremony. They denounced the spread of misinformation and affirmed the joyous nature of the Ram temple inauguration for followers of Sanatan Dharma.