TORONTO, CANADA, August 23, 2018 (Bangalore Mirror): Toronto’s growing Sringeri community, mostly comprising professionals from Bengaluru and other cities, celebrated its biggest event of the year at the country’s only Sringeri temple this weekend. The two-day Maharudram in praise of Lord Shiva attracted Sringeri followers from across Canada and the US. Federal science minister Kirsty Duncan and the local MP joined in the celebrations as the temple turned into a mini-South Indian enclave, with mantra chants and rituals by 130 priests trained by the Shankaracharya.
“This was our second Maharudram,” says clean technology scientist Dr. Lucky Lakshmanan, chairman of the Sringeri Vidya Bharati Foundation (SVBF) that runs the Toronto temple. “The temple and religious-cum-cultural activities here symbolize that our community is now in the stage of institution building,” adds Dr Lakshmanan, who was instrumental in setting up the temple. Mangaluru-born nuclear engineer Param Bhat, who looks after religious affairs at the temple, says the activities at Sringeri have rejuvenated their growing community. “When I landed here in 1978, there were just a handful of Kannada families. Today, there are over a thousand families in the Greater Toronto Area alone,” says Bhat. “Seeing the ritwiks (priests) chanting rudram in praise of Lord Shiva more than 1,331 times was such a learning experience for us and our new generation.”