The Establishment of the Temple

In 1973, a Vedic temple was established by H.D. Sri Swami Omkarananda, in the Omkarananda Ashram Switzerland, Winterthur, independently of any religion, faith or system of thought, to radiate the Love and Light of the Divine Mother Sri Mahatripurasundari by performing Pujas and Havanas, special prayers for everyone in need, and conducting different kinds of ceremonies for the welfare of the whole mankind.

The first Havana, or Yagna, was performed in March 1974 by an Indian priest, in the presence of Sri Swami Omkarananda himself.

On 16th February 1976 an Indian Pandit performed the instalment rites for the first Shivalingam, named Omkareshwar, and since then daily Abhisheka is performed. Following this, the Omkarananda Order of Sannyasa was established, and the Akhanda-Havana was started.

Soon after on the ground-floor of the house, another Temple, Veda-Mandir, has been built. In this Temple two spacious Havana-Kundas were installed. Special Pujas, Havanas as well as Bhajans and Kirtans are regularly performed in this Temple.

For many years Akhanda-Mahamrityunjaya-Mantra-Japa has been performed in this place.

In the year 2000 the Veda-Mandir has also become the Mahasamadhi-Shrine of our Gurudev, Sri Swami Omkarananda. Veda-Mandir is a place of deep inspiration and silent, unbroken communication with God and Guru.

The meaning of yagna

Yagna is one of the most powerful and effective forms of adoration of the Divine. For thousands of years yagna has been practiced by the great saints and sages of India. An essential element of the yagna is the ritual fire – the divine Agni – into which oblations are poured, accompanied by the chanting of Vedic Mantras. Everything that is offered into the fire is believed to reach God immediately.

Swamiji describes yagna in his own words:

«The entire ritual is a non-physical, non-mental, supra-occult, mystical ritual. The uninitiated and the general public live under the illusion that it is just a physical act. The initiated person knows what it is, this yagna, this havana. It is a perpetual establishment of the inner consciousness in the infinite and the eternal, the timeless and the spaceless Reality called Maha-Tripurasundari. The very first condition for performance of this yagna is to go beyond the mind, to surrender the mind to the Divine Mother, the omnipresent, omniscient, transcendental Reality whose form is of the colour of the golden fire.

The devotee, with every mantra enters into a state of consciousness where the mind is not.

The physical fire has a subtle body, even as you have a subtle body. In the subtle body there is a centre of consciousness: Agni Devata. Through our special Vedic mantras we introduce prana into this fire, into this consciousness of the Divine in the fire, and we use the services of the Fire God to transmit our meditation to the Divine Mother’s Heart and finally we experience that the Divine Mother’s heart, our heart and the heart of the fire all are one and the same.

Everyone must be benefited. Every vedic Yagna has a selfless function. There is no selfish interest here. That is the precondition of performance of the yagna. All vedic yagnas are cosmic, universal, selfless, are for the welfare, vishvakalyana, that is welfare of the world, welfare of mankind, welfare of the cosmos, welfare of the stars, welfare of the whole universe, welfare of all universes, welfare of all manifestation. That is the first and primary aim and function of these Yagnas. All the yagnas are Vedic yagnas. Vedic yagnas have this purpose.

That is the meaning of havana.»