So, What's Stopping You ?
Thanks to the loving Guidance of our Beloved Mathadhipati- Parama Pujya Sadyojat Shankarashram Swamiji Girvanapratishtha – the Sanskrit-studies-wing of Shri Chitrapur Math has grown into a globally applauded institution teaching this Devabhasha – this language of the Gods. Over and above the regular classes conducted by over 50 dedicated teachers, Girvanapratishtha is soon going to start online classes to bring this ancient, vibrant and enchanting tongue into every home. Over 3,000 students have already benefited from these carefully-crafted courses… (December 2200)
So, What’s Stopping You ?
All the Swamijis of our Guruparampara were great scholars of the Shastra-s and Sanskrit. It was Parama Pujya Parijnanashram Swamiji III ‘s, ardent wish that there should be a Sanskrit Pathashala in Shirali. The Guru’s wish was fulfilled by His Shishya, Parama Pujya Sadyojat Shankarashram Swamiji and the Sanskrit Department of Shri Chitrapur Math was born. Girvanapratishtha, the name given to the department is also so apt. Girvanapratishtha is constantly doing प्रसार and प्रचार of this गिर्वाणभाषा Language of the Gods. In गिर्वाणप्रतिष्ठागीतम् Sanskrit language is praised as देवी सरस्वती says that संस्कृतभाषा is verily Jnanamokshapradayinee- the Bestower of both knowledge and liberation!
Very well structured four courses have been created by very dedicated teachers with the Blessings and Guidance of our Beloved Swamiji. The courses take the raw student through the grammar and very popular concepts in Sanskrit. Finally, the richness of the language is introduced through rich prose and poetry. The student starts to converse in simple practical day-to-day Sanskrit. Many still go further and try to slowly grasp the meaning of stotra-s, write prose, or even compose poetry. Right now, a very committed group of 50- plus teachers are dedicatedly working in cities like Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru and Chennai. Till date, approximately 3,000 students have come in contact with Girvanapratishtha by way of courses or shiviram-s. Every year approximately 75 - 100 students appear for the final exam and receive Blessings and certificates- प्रमाणपत्रम् from Parama Pujya Swamiji at Mumbai, Karla or Bengaluru. The web lessons introduced in 2001, are very popular among students. Even after so many years, Girvanapratishtha receives appreciative mails from students, not only from India but also from abroad. The web lessons are being developed further. Uploading stories which complement the lessons, audio support for pronunciation is being done by a very able team.
Girvanapratishtha teachers have developed very easy study material for children in Prarthana Varga. The Prarthana teachers introduce these words and phrases to children and they have become very popular among them. Girvanavaikhari is a recent development, which has introduced Sanskrit Sambhashana – conversing in Sanskrit to some of our sadhaka-s living abroad.
The regular classes of Girvanapratishtha are held every week at almost 50- odd centres. Weekly Sanskrit Sambhashana classes are held for व्यवहारिक संस्कृत Regular Stara-vardhana classes for teachers are also held. Occasionally Sanskrit Shiviram-s are organised for people, where Sambhashana in Sanskrit is encouraged through the medium of games, jokes, or storytelling and this is thoroughly enjoyed by the participants.
Pujya Swamiji also foresaw that the teachers should keep upgrading their knowledge. Therefore Sanskrit Sthara-vardhana Shiviram-s are organised for teachers. For 5 years (twice a year) very reputed Sanskrit scholars were invited by Girvanapratishtha to elaborate upon some important texts from the vast Sanskrit literature. The outcome of these shiviram-s was- over the last three years our own teachers are now presenting concepts, or introducing new literary works to our teachers in these Stara-vardhana Shiviram-s.
During camps of Pujya Swamiji in Mumbai, Karla and Bengaluru, Girvanapratishtha presents entertainment programs (नाट्यप्रस्तुति हास्यविनोदः चित्रपट गीतप्रस्तुति नृत्याविष्कारः) have all been presented very successfully by students and teachers of Girvanapratishtha. Children, young adults, middle- aged persons and even senior citizens participate in such programs. The Prarthana Varga also presents skits in Sanskrit during the visit of Pujya Swamiji. After watching these programs, Girvanapratishtha always receives new students.
During Chaturmasa Girvanapratishtha organises a shiviram so that the sadhaka-s present can participate. Throughout Chaturmasa Sambhashana classes are held by teachers visiting the site of Pujya Swamiji’s Chaturmasya Vrata.
Covid – 19 posed a big problem for the actual classes since the teachers could not travel to the location and conduct them, due to the lockdown. It was with the divine Anugraha of Parama Pujya Swamiji that the classes could be started online and the students were able to retain their connection with Girvanapratishtha. In fact, Girvanapratishtha even conducted an online final exam during this period and 48 students passed with flying colours. Inspired by the response from students for the online classes, Pujya Swamiji has given His kind consent to start a new series of exclusive online classes even after the Covid situation improves and the lockdown ends. Preparations are going ahead full-steam and Sanskrit enthusiasts the world over, can soon look forward to learning the divine language through online courses.