SRINAGAR: Minister for Public Works, Naeem Akhtar today visited Ishwar Ashran Trust at Nishat here to join the Mahasamadhi Day of the mystic and scholar of Kashmiri Shaivism Swami Lakshman Joo Raina.
A Hawan was organised by the trustees to commeorate the Nirwan Diwas of Swami Lakshman Joo.
Akhtar also visited the Bal Ashram run by the Trust and interacted with the visitors.
Also known as Lal Sahib, Swami Lakshman Joo Raina (9 May 1907 – 27 September 1991) was a mystic and scholar of Kashmir Shaivism.
Lakshman Joo was born in Srinagar, Kashmir on 9 May 1907. His father Naraindas Raina, also known as Nav Narayan, is believed to be the first man to have introduced houseboats in Kashmir.
Lakshman Joo was introduced to the path of spirituality and to the principles of Kashmir Shaivism by his family priest Ram and later by his disciple Mehtab Kak. He left his home at the age of 20 and moved to the famous ashram of Sadhamalyun (Sadhuganga) in Handwara. Persuaded by his father to return to Srinagar, he continued to study Sanskrit and Shaiva philosophy under the guidance of a scholar named Maheshwar Razdan.
In 1934-35, he moved to an isolated place above the village of Gupta Ganga near Nishat suburb of Srinagar where his parents built him a house. In 1962 he moved down the hill to a place closer to the famous Dal Lake a few hundred metres from the Nishat Gardens.
In 1991 he travelled to the United States and established the Universal Shaiva Fellowship where he designated John Hughes and his wife Denise to continue publishing his teachings of Kashmir Shaivism. In India the teachings of Lakshman Joo are carried on by a local organization Ishwar Ashram Trust which was founded by him.