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Pandit Krishna- An Appreciation
Posted: Saturday, October 18, 2003

By Stephen Kangal

Guru Brahma Guru Devo Mahesvar

Guru Saakshaat Param Brahma Tasmail Shree

Guravey Namaha

We offer our deepest love and veneration to the Guru who is verily Brahma- the creator of divine thoughts, words and deeds…. We invoke the blessings of that image of the highest Love, Truth and Bliss

As a villager who at present lives two streets away from the late His Holiness the Dharma Acharya Pandit Krishna (aged 78) of Caroni who began his journey soul-ward to nirvana on Wednesday last at 5.30 p.m., I can write with authority and not as the scribes.

His Holiness was born on 28 April 1925 and by 3 years had moved to Caroni. He was conferred with awards by The Rotary Club, The "Kaanti Marg Award" and the Trinity Cross which he gracefully received. In 1986 he was appointed Leader of the Hindu Community as their "Dharma Acharaya of Trinidad and Tobago" or the equivalent of the Catholic Archbishop.

Let this T&T multicultural mosaic celebrate and not leave unheralded and unappreciated the enduring love, unvarnished brotherhood and sanatanist care for all mankind that distinguished the Hindu missionary life and zeal of the late Krishen Pandit. This is how he was reverently and affectionately known throughout T&T, the Caribbean and within the T&T diaspora in Canada and the United States by thousands of chelas (devotees). The late Krishen Pandit is survived by his 3 daughters, his four sons, three of whom are pandits (who I taught at Hillview) and his equally revered brothers, including Pandit Hardath of Cumuto.

I join with the family in extending our sympathy to his children as well as to the grief stricken people of Caroni.

Krishen Pandit was pivotal and central to the life of Caroni. Devotees journeyed from far and wide to perform hawans at his Caroni mandir. He was an icon and role model- our Caroni Ambassador. His is our proud, unique and unparalleled Caroni contribution to the unremitting propagation of the universal virtues and values of Caribbean Hinduism. Without fear of contradiction, no other Pandit, living or deceased was held in and showered with so much awe, devotion. Adulation and respect that at times bordered on adoration for our late Dharma Acharya.

Citizens across the religious divides gravitated to Panditji for advice in good times and in bad.

I knew Krishen Pandit for 53 years. His was a compelling cosmic reverence, uncompromising sincerity and deep loyalty to his Hindu sanatanist faith to the extent that he declined the National accolade of the Trinity Cross in 1995 on the grounds that it was inconsistent with the multicultural make up of T&T. But this should not now dominate our cherished recollections and be used as an important benchmark to assess the epic leela of Sant Krishen Das.

Pandits like Krishenji do not die. The good that they do as well as their spiritual legacy cannot be dimmed. It will transcend time and space. He has attained moksha and will dwell immortal in our hearts and minds.

Itna To Karna Swami Jab Pran Tan Se Nikle
(Supplications to God at the moment when the Soul Leaves the Body)

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