Sri Rudram 1st Anuvaka workshop (25th of April 2010); Zagreb, Croatia

On the 25th of April 2010 Sound of Veda Fellowship organized a Sri Rudram - 1st Anuvaka workshop as a part of Rudram 2012 project initiated by Veda Union. The workshop was held in Zagreb, Croatia and was joined by people not only from Croatia, but from other countries of the region as well, such as Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. Overall, the workshop was a great success with more than 100 people joining the all day program.

The workshop was divided into several parts with the sole aim to review in detail the 1st Anuvaka of Sri Rudram and to align the chanting of different groups from different regions. 1st and 2nd part included the Sri Rudram class. The 3rd part, which was also the last part of the day, included an hour long bhajan session.

Gathering started at 9:30 in the nicely arranged Czech’s home hall in the Zagreb city center. By 10:30 all the participants have registered at the entrance of the hall and received a Veda Union badge, Sri Rudram text, CD with learning material, and a letter with an inspiring quote on the Vedas by the holy personages. More than 100 people registered at the event while many more just joined during the day and listened to the sacred chanting and bhajans.

Registration desk

100 people strong gathering

Branimir Gonan, founder of Sound of Veda Fellowship and co-founder of Veda Union, started the event by delivering an opening speech with brief introduction of the Vedas, its division and history. He also stressed the importance of IAST (International Alfabet of Sanskrit Transliteration) to be accepted within all the conjoined Veda groups. Next, followed a short overview by Vojko Kercan, co-founder of Veda Union, about the 6 rules of Vedic chanting, namely, the pronunciation, intonation, duration, force of articulation, continuity of recitation and punctuation.

Branimir Gonan during the opening speech

Vojko Kercan on rules of Vedic chanting

The first Sri Rudram class led by Branimir started at 11:00 and continued without stop until 13:15. Participants followed the class either by reading from the materials received during the registration or by reading the verses from the big screen projector. Great detail was put into pronunciation and intonation of each of the verses of the 1st Anuvaka during the whole class. The atmosphere in the hall was filled with divine energy emerging from united chanting of all participants.

Branimir leading the Sri Rudram class

Sri Rudram text on the big screen

The afternoon second part started at 14:00 with a short overview of Veda Union which was followed by a summary of the importance of Sri Rudram, as well as presentation of quotes from Prof. G. Venkataraman's lecture "The Vedas - Their evolution and significance" oriented mostly on the importance of sound aspect. There was also a screening of an inspiring film "The Vedas: Song of Creation" by Gene Massey. By 15:30 the 1st Anuvaka was completely reviewed. The class concluded with full throated chanting of complete 1st Anuvaka by all participants without interruption.

Presentation of Veda Union

Full throated chanting of 1st Anuvaka

The last part of the day included an elevating hour long bhajan session led by Sai Surya bhajan group from Slovenia.

Sai Surya bhajan group

Enjoying the event

Exactly at 17:00 the all day program came to a close with the closing remarks by Branimir, extending an invitation to join the public program in Zagreb on May 29th 2010 and announcing the next Sri Rudram workshop to be held in Ljubljana, Slovenia in autumn 2010.

A big "thank you" to everybody who worked very hard in organizing this workshop and to all who participated in it. It was truly an unforgettable and unique experience.