Degrees of Enlightenment

I’ve noticed that a lot of stories in movies and TV have the premise that regular life is dull and empty. So many characters are trapped in mundane lives devoid of meaning. People in real life too often suggest that you have to go and do something thrilling and unusual to give your life meaning. Like cooking dinner, signing kids’ permission slips, and sitting on the couch watching TV is not enough out of life. And it all seems very… Read more

Ilana

I can’t believe I’ve lived seven years without my friend Ilana. Time keeps on marching forward (at least from the limited perspective here in maya). Grief is not raw anymore the way it used to be. I think I’ve accepted that she has moved on to another plane of existence. She still sometimes visits me in my dreams and I cherish that time with her. Now that I have a son I am sad that he will never know his… Read more

Zero Waste Resolution Update

It’s been 15 days! Okay, it’s not that impressive that my New Year’s Resolution is still on track…but it is and I’m pleased. I’m highly motivated to keep trash out of the landfill and that is guiding me to make decisions and find the energy  to make more things myself. In other words, a whole lot of cooking from scratch. And even when I’m tired, it’s worth it to not bring a pile of trash into the house to eat… Read more

Garrick Ravi’s Annaprashan

Well I kind of messed this one up. I knew there was a ceremony called Annaprashan sometime in a baby’s first year. But the time flew by and when I looked more closely at what it was, I found out that it is the ceremonial feeding of the first solid food. And Garrick Ravi has already started trying solid foods. We started trying them with him to get him to sleep better at night (which, for the record, did not… Read more

Most Religions…

I’ve been running across this phrase a lot recently. “Most religions *blank*” and I think it shows a monotheistic bias. I understand the idea that all religions have come common ideas. I’m on board with the idea that if Truth is universal then people across all places and times have managed to tap into it. (Naturally, I have a bias and I think that Truth is the clearest in Hinduism). Despite this desire that many people have to find commonalities… Read more

Story of God: The Chosen One

There’s a new season of The Story of God out at National Geographic Channel! This is a really cool show exploring common themes in religions around the world. I’ve seen the first episode of the second season and I think this particular theme is a bit of a stretch. They are speaking about the concept of a “chosen one” in a religion. Though Morgan Freeman says, “Most religions have a chosen one” he then names the three religions that all… Read more

Words Don’t Have Meanings

I end up in this debate every once in a while. I struggle to understand the purpose of telling people not to use words the way they do. I know there is this idea that the Sanskrit word for something is the real and correct word. But to me a word only means what we agree for it to mean. We all have slightly different connotations but we can build a bridge of understanding with the imperfect words we have…. Read more

Prayer in School

There is a lot of misunderstanding about prayer in public schools and I think it’s causing undue stress to a lot of people. The truth is kids can pray in school as much as they like. Muslim students can pray in school, Hindu students can pray in school, Christian students can pray in school. What isn’t allowed is for teachers and authority figures to lead prayers or support one religion over another. And if you think about it, that’s a… Read more

Hindu Holidays 2017

There are other  Hindu holidays, festivals, and events, but these are the ones that we celebrate in our family. Click the name to learn more about how to celebrate each one. Here I’ll be talking about my crafts, preparations, and plans. Maha Shivaratri February 24th (Friday) This year I have my own Shiva Lingam (okay I did already have one but it is so small it is barely the size of my thumb). I’ll be putting to use this year… Read more

DIY Home Puja Mandir

For years I have admired and wanted a home puja mandir. They are like tiny temples for your home and many are intricate and lovely. The only trouble is they are extremely expensive whether you buy here in the U.S. or ship here from India. So I’ve long admired them from afar. I was impressed to discover recently that people are making their own home puja mandir. This woman did an IKEA hack and turned a dresser into a home… Read more

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