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Seva- Saptaha at Karla Math
On March 1st, 2010 a mammoth crowd of devotees came to Karla to commemorate the 51st anniversary of the Shishya-Sweekar of Parama Pujya Shrimat Parijnanashram Swamiji III. It was on this historic day that the Gurushakti ignited the sankalpa to start a Seva-Saptaha at this revered Shree-Sthala. The purpose was to give eager devotees a golden opportunity to express their bhakti in various forms of seva over seven memorable days.

Dr.Gajanan Mankikarmam of Pune is the Chief-Coordinator of this unique spiritual retreat wherein about 8 to10 volunteers from different sabhas come to Karla in turns, on a relay basis and offer seva for a week. Seva at this holy shrine can translate into helping in the cooking and cleaning, weaving garlands, managing the seva counter, Samvit Sudha and publication counters, informing new visitors about the mahima of the sacred Sanjeevani Samadhi of our Beloved Parama Guru and much else. The week also offers sadhaka-s an opportunity to represent the whole Saraswat Samaj and receive the blessings of Shri Durga Parameshwari and of Shri Parijananashram Swamiji by attending the daily Viniyogas and offering the Sadhana-Panchakam Seva. The heavenly calm and deep peace permeating in this holy shrine enables sadhaka-s to greatly augment their personal sadhana at the Divya Sannidhis of Our Devi and Our Guru.

While doing seva, the devotees also get an opportunity to participate in interactive sessions on various topics like Gurupoojan, manthan – in-depth discussion on shlokas from various stotras, vimarsh and guided meditation. Sadhaka-s also do the Ashtamurti Upasana – a unique form of open-eyed meditation taught by Pujya Swamiji which is done outdoors. Further, the volunteers have student-friendly lessons in speaking the deva-bhasha- Sanskrit. They also learn how to add diacritical marks to Sanskrit words when writing in English. These sessions are conducted by qualified teachers of Girvana Pratishtha – which has graded courses in Sanskrit formulated under the loving Guidance of Pujya Swamiji.

Every day at the Karla Math begins with the Suprabhatam – chanting various stotra-s to ceremoniously ‘awaken’ our Shivarupa Guru and Devi Durga Parameshwari. Reciting the Shri Gurupaduka stotra, Shri Parijnana Trayodashi and Gurubhajan stotra in unison at dawn is such a wonderful way to bring home the awareness of the Guru-shakti and how it protects and guides us at every step on life’s up-and-down journey.

Since the co-ordination of body, mind and spirit is best achieved when you are physically fit, the morning prayers are followed by an energizing session of stretching exercises. After this comes a welcome cup of tea or coffee at the bhojanalaya and then, all the mams commence the Gayatri japa anushthana. A very touching tradition maintained at Karla Math is the practice of devoutly offering the food prepared at every meal-time to our Beloved Parama Guru - Parijnanashram Swamiji at the Ashram and then partaking of it as prasad. So, after it has been offered to Guru Swami, the Sadhaka-s have breakfast and then leave for their work- stations like the reception counter, kitchen, Samvit Sudha counter, Ashram or Mandir.

In the Mandir, ‘Sadhana Panchankam- Seva’ begins around 9 am with the chanting of Shri Navaratri Nityapatha and Shri Devi Anushthana, followed by the recitation of Shri Lalita Sahasranama Stotram. The Bhaktiyoga and Purushottamayoga chapters (12 and 15) of Shri Bhagawad Geeta, are also recited. The Sadhana Panchakam session concludes with the chanting of the Shivamanas Puja Stotra. Sevaka-s then attend the Arati at Shri Samadhi Sannidhi and Shri Devi Sannidhi. After Bhiksha has been offered to Guru Swami at the Ashram, lunch is served in the dining hall.

The Mandir is closed between 1.00 pm and 3.30 pm. Taking turns, one volunteer watches over the Ashram, while the others rest for some time. At 3.30 pm, the Mandir reopens for the afternoon session. Now Sevaka-s can practise the Ashtamurti Upasana , meditate indoors, and/or listen to recordings of Pujya Swamiji’s Ashirvachana-s. Vimarsha, Sanskrit Sambhaashana, a class on ‘how to incorporate diacritical marks’, omkaar- meditation are all conducted during the week by visiting sadhaka-s from Mumbai or Pune. The time-table for all activities is created in consultation with the group-leader at the beginning of the Saptaha. Sevaka-s can also use this pocket of time to share experiences, or engage in sadhana-related discussions till they proceed to the dining hall for tea or coffee.

When the sun goes down, it is time for Deepanamaskar and this is followed by the Ashtawadhan Seva. Devotees also offer Sangeet seva and Ashtaka seva at this time.

Phalahara is offered at the Ashram at about 8 pm, after which dinner is served. Dinner is followed by a meeting conducted by the group leader. Duties are planned, instructions regarding any special programme given, health enquiries made to ensure everyone is okay and the day’s activities are reported to the HH Secretariat and Trustees.

Sadhaka-s from all Mumbai sabhas, Pune and Nashik participate in Sannikarsha on every Sunday at Karla according to a planned annual calendar. For the convenience of the volunteers coming for Seva Saptaha, special efforts are made to see that the week for a particular sabha is linked to the Sunday Sannikarsha so that they have transport facility to and from Karla. Senior citizens,who are eager to participate in a Seva-Saptaha, but hesitate because the medication they have to take for chronic complaints prevents them from rising early can skip the Suprabhatam and join the group for Sadhana-Panchakam after breakfast. The group-leader also ensures that the tasks assigned to volunteers are well within their physical capacity.

Seva-s offered by the devotees who come here, and the generous donations routed through the Karla Durga Parameshwari Trust (KDPT) take care of the expenses. Those who would like to support the Seva Saptaha activities through donations, may contact The Manager, Shri Ajay Shirali on +919545417400 or on email

• Do you feel like dropping your multiple roles in the workaday world for an entire week to introspect, pray and establish a meaningful connection with the Divine?
• Do you want to discover the bliss of collective satsang ?
• Would you like to be part of a like-minded team that chops vegetables, rolls out chapattis, weaves garlands, chants, meditates, or just basks in the joy of being for seven whole days?

If your heart says “Yes”, then come and be part of this unforgettable experience by getting in touch with your nearest Coordinator. A suggested check–list and a list of Coordinators, area-wise is given below:

Suggested check- list for volunteers of Seva -Saptaha :

1) Asana, Tatte, Kainso, Japamala,(bhasma optional)
2) Small note- book and pen to take notes during sessions.
3) Books: Stutimanjari, Samvit Sankirtan Saar, Sadhana Shrinkhala Book,(Navaratri Nitya Patha, Shri Devi Anushthan, Lalita Sahasranama, Bhagawat Geeta 12th and 15th chap, Shivamanas Puja) Copy of Sankalpa for Shri Devi Anushthan.
4) Torch, small knife for cutting fruits.
5) Personal medicines, mosquito repellent and warm clothing if required.

Note- Please do bring the scarf that you would have received if you have already participated in an earlier Seva-Saptaha.

Smt. Priti Panemanglor may also be contacted for all your queries and for booking your dates to participate in this fulfilling seva through your Sabha Coordinators on +919822021630


Area - wise Coordinators for Seva-Saptaha:

Area Name Cell Numbar  
Andheri Sheetala Chandavarkar 09819261956 sheetala_c@hotmail.com
Bandra Khar Sujata Haldipur 09870719898 hsujata@hotmail.com
Borivali Arun Trikannad 09867404073 aruntrikannad@yahoo.co.in
Dadar Revati Gulvady 09322348045 Chaitanya.Gulvady@hotmail.com
Goregaon Malad Varada Soukoor 09969021560 varadasoukoor@yahoo.co.in
Grant Road Mahesh Kalyanpur 09322515884 mkalyanpur@hotmail.com
Santacruz Kavita Karnad 09820684414 kavitakarnad@hotmail.com
Thane Pravin Kalawar 09820186743 pravin.kalawar@gmail.com
Vakola Naresh Gangolli 09819654949 naresh_gangolli@rediffmail.com
Vile Parle Padmini Balsekar 09820572174 pa_balsekar@yahoo.co.in
Virar Sujal Bijur 09890060097 divyabijur@gmail.com
Pune Jyothi Divgi 09373319669 bhajo@yahoo.com
Nasik Kisan Chandavarkar 09822320601 anugraha_2000@rediffmail.com
Ahmedabad Arun Rao 09825038518 arunrao1232@rediffmail.com
Bengaluru Sadhana Kaikini
Mahesh Kalbag
Smita Naimpally


Bankikodla, Gokarn, Ankola, Karwar Narayan Mallapur
Dr.Hemant Kamat

Belgaum Gokak Durgesh Haritay 09448142606 durgesh_haritay@yahoo.com
Chennai Ramcharan Kapnadak 09940298793 kapnadakp@yahoo.co.in
Dharwad Nandita Mudbidri 09845417208 nmudbidri@gmail.com
Goa Sabita Harite 09822152308 sabita.goa@rediffmail.com
Honnavar Geeta Kalyanpur 09448893820 anubhat1525@gmail.com
Hubli Maithili Sirur 09845667440 maithili.sirur@gmail.com
Hyderabad Vinati Udiyavar 09848017310 vinatiku@gmail.com
Kolhapur Chaitanya Hemmady 09822276870 chaihem@yahoo.com
Kumta Mallapur Arun Ubhaykar 09632334700
Mangalore Ramkishore Yellore 09448144302 ramkishore_yellore@indiatimes.com
Mysore Shri. Bagade 09008853812 ravinmankikar@yahoo.com
Nagpur Wardha Ashok Gokarn 09822472436 gokarnashok@gmail.com
New Delhi Mamta Savkur 09958404225 mamtasavkur@gmail.com
Sirsi, Sagar, Shimoga Uday Nilekani 08384227414  
South Gujarat Atul Rao 09824100454 atul_rao@yahoo.com
Shirali Subhash Koppikar 09886584862 shiralisabha@gmail.com
Udipi Gauri Karnad 09480485958 gkalambi@gmail.com
Vadodara, Surat, Killa Pardi and other areas Kishore /Purnima Nadkarni 09825116705