Mahamandaleshwar initiation in Allahabad during Kumbha Mela 2013
On the 13th of February 2013 two Croatians became the first Europeans to be initiated as Mahamandaleshwars in the long history of the Maha Nirvani Akhara. This took place at the Kumbha Mela in Prayag Raj (Allahabad) where more than 140 million people have gathered to bathe at the banks where the Holy rivers Ganga, Yamuna and Saraswati converge. Being initiated into the Hindu order as a Mahamandaleshwar (similar to a Cardinal in the Catholic religion) is the highest honour that can be bestowed upon a Sannyasi (Hindu monk). Mahamandaleshwar Swami Vivek Puri Ji (Tino Pavlin) and Mahamandaleshwar Swami Gyaneshwar Puri Ji (Igor Mrkoci) are long term disciples of His Holiness Vishwaguru Mahamandaleshwar Sri Paramhans Swami Maheshwarananda Puri (Swamiji). They are the first Europeans to be invited into this Akhara (order) and have been studying Indian ancient spiritual texts, history and Sanskrit language. Swami Vivek Puri is also the President of the Hindu Society of Croatia. Now four Mahamandaleshwars from Yoga in Daily Life are initiated in the Maha Nirvani Akhara.