Bhagavan Adi Da Samraj (1939-2008) devoted his entire lifetime to revealing and establishing the means for human beings to discover the ultimate nature of reality, which he calls “Conscious Light”. He established his principal hermitage Adi Da Samrajashram, on the island of Naitauba, Fiji, in October 1983, as a place of retreat and blessing.
The celebration of “Naitauba Padavara Mela” celebrates this event with the coming together of two cultures: the great Fijian culture of respect based on the tradition of the tuis (or chiefs) and elders, and the culture of devotion to the spiritual master taught by Bhagavan Adi Da Samraj.
Padavara Mela is the annual coming together of these two cultures of respect, which coexist in harmony on Naitauba year-round, in celebrating Bhagavan Adi Da’s arrival at Naitauba. This is a great celebration, marked by an expansive feast and vibrant offerings of music and dance; the Fijians with their wonderful traditional “mekes,” and Bhagavan Adi Da’s devotees with offerings of ecstatic chants and sacred music written specifically for the theme of this celebration.
In 2017, Felix Woldenberg wrote an opus named “Dau Loloma Padavara” to honour Bhagavan Adi Da and the Fijian culture that has contributed so much to Naitauba over the last three-and-a-half decades. Drawing on his Qawwali training, and utilising many Fijian names and titles relating to Bhagavan Adi Da, Felix wrote this work in two movements, encompassing a stronger, more energetic rhythmic style than many of his other works. This sacred offering features special guests the Naitauba Chanting Guild.
The other piece on this album is a call-and-response chant called “Avatara,” which was offered in the devotee village at Adi Da Samrajashram in Temple Adi Da in July 2017.