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Business News/ News / India/  Who are the four Shankaracharyas who rejected Ayodhya Ram Mandir invite and why are they unhappy with it? Explained

Who are the four Shankaracharyas who rejected Ayodhya Ram Mandir invite and why are they unhappy with it? Explained

Top spiritual gurus have rejected the invite for Ayodhya Ram Mandir consecration, stating that the ceremony doesn't follow the rules of Sanatan Dharma.

Top Sanathan Dharma gurus have turned down the invitation for the inauguration of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya.Premium
Top Sanathan Dharma gurus have turned down the invitation for the inauguration of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya.

Ahead of the much-awaited Pran Pratishtha at Ram Mandir in Ayodhya, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is facing backlash from the top Sanatan Dharma spiritual leaders for rushing into the inauguration of the temple. Recently, the top leaders of Sanatan Hindu Dharma or Shankaracharyas have decided to not be a part of the inauguration ceremony of the temple. Most of them expressed their displeasure that the ceremony didn't follow the rules of Sanatan Dharma. 

Four Shankracharyas are expected to not attend the January 22 Ram temple inauguration in Ayodhya, the Telegraph reported, quoting Swami Avimukteshwaranand Saraswati, the Shankaracharya of Jyotishpeeth in Uttarakhand.

The centre is now being targeted by the opposition parties on the grounds of objections raised by the Sanatan Dharma gurus. As the inauguration will be held within the next 10 days, here is all you need to know about the four Shankaracharyas and why they are objecting to the inauguration of the temple.

Who is Shankaracharya Swami Shri Nischalananda Saraswati?

Shankaracharya Nischalananda Saraswati of Purvaamnaya Govardhanmath Puri Peeth recently declined his participation in the Pran Pratishtha ceremony scheduled to take place on January 22 in Ayodhya. 

Swami Nischalananda Saraswati is the 145th Sankaracharya of the Govardhana Peetha at Jagannath Puri, Odisha. He took the responsibility of the Peet as its head on 9th February 1992 (Vikram Samvat 2048).

Why is he objecting to Ram Mandir's inauguration ceremony?

After receiving the invitation to the Ram Mandir inauguration, Nischalananda Saraswati pointed out that the ceremony had turned into a political show.

"The country's Prime Minister will reside in the sanctum sanctorum, touch the idol, and perform the 'Pran Pratishtha' ceremony. This has been given a political hue, if there is to be the Pran Pratishta of Lord Rama, it should be according to scriptural guidelines. I won't oppose it, nor will I attend. I have taken my stance. Let's not mix half-truths and half-lies; everything should align with scriptural knowledge," he said.

He also noted that the ceremony should be done according to “scriptural guidelines" and otherwise “the deity's radiance diminishes, and demonic entities enter, causing havoc".

Who is Shankaracharya Swami Avimukteshwaranand?

Shankaracharya Avimukteshwaranand manages all the religious activities and ceremonies in Jyotir Math, Uttarakhand. It is one of the four cardinal pithams established by saint Adi Shankara. He took Diksha from Swami Swaroopanand in 2006. Since then, he has been looking after all the religious activities, according to Wikipedia.

Why is he skipping the much-awaited ceremony in Ayodhya?

Avimukteshwaranand, Shankaracharya of Jyotish Peeth Math decided not to attend Ayodhya's Ram Mandir ceremony on January 22. He noted that the construction of the temple doesn't signify a victory of Sanatan Dharma.

"Ayodhya already had a Ram Mandir before, and its construction isn't a gift or triumph for the religion. Political leaders not going to Ayodhya on January 22 may be due to their political constraints, but no such constraints bind me. When cow slaughter ends in the country, I will visit Ayodhya's Ram Mandir, celebrating with enthusiasm. Since the honourable court's decision, the land belongs to Hindus, and its use or misuse depends on their discretion," ANI quoted Avimukteshwaranand.

Other Shankaracharyas who are likely to skip the ceremony

According to some media reports, Shankaracharya Bharati Teerth of Sringeri Sharda Peeth is also expected to not attend the ceremony. Recently, Sringeri mutt rejected media reports claiming that it expressed displeasure over the pran-pratishtha ceremony. 

"...A social media post, which carries a photo of Dakshinamnaya Sringeri Sharada Peethadheeshwara, His Holiness Paramapujya Jagadguru Shankaracharya Sri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamiji, conveys that the Sringeri Shankaracharya, in a message, has expressed displeasure over the Prana-pratishtha. However, the Sringeri Shankaracharya has not given any such message," it said.

However, the release didn't mention whether Shankaracharya Bharati Teerth will attend the ceremony or not. Other media reports suggest that Shankaracharya Sadanand Saraswati of Paschimannaya Dwarka Shardapeeth will also not attend the ceremony. However, there is no official confirmation by the two spiritual leaders.

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Published: 12 Jan 2024, 05:10 PM IST
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