Another one of my favorite holidays, it’s almost Navratri time. The festival starts October 13th and goes for nine days until October 21st. One of the traditions that I love most is the Southern tradition of collecting and displaying of golu (of kolu) dolls. It’s like a Hindu version of doing a Christmas village, which is such a fun way to dress up your house for the special occasion. Traditionally what you do is get a series of steps in… Read more

One complaint that people sometimes have trying to get started in Hinduism is not feeling welcome. Feeling ignored, in fact. I’ve come to understand that most Hindu temples and organizations are just not at all used to people showing up who aren’t intimately familiar with what to do.  And I’ve also found that there’s a real advantage to that. You can show up and have deep private time with God without anyone bothering you. You set the pace of your… Read more

Update: We were put in touch with an insurance broker who will be able to get us coverage for Jan 2016. We will hopefully never have to deal with the incompetent mess at Maryland Health Connection ever again. The broker told us that she has heard many horror stories about the problems at MD Health Connection and a lawyer friend said he heard there may be a class action lawsuit against them at some point. I hope so. The way… Read more

I think I am a great example of how important it is to be patient and cautious when waiting for a guru. I’ve always advised you to exercise great care before dedicating yourself to a spiritual leader. You have the Truth within you and you shouldn’t give your power over to someone who doesn’t deserve it. And the vast majority of spiritual leaders don’t deserve it. There’s a lot of frauds out there and there’s a lot of misguided people… Read more

I’m a big fan of self-improvement. If I notice a problem with my life, I immediately go about trying to fix it. No time to waste! I’ve changed a lot of things about myself over the years. I was withdrawn and quiet as a teenager. I didn’t like that about myself. So I changed it. Now I’m very social and have a lot of close friends. I was frustrated by my inability to be spontaneous. I changed that. Now I’m… Read more

Patheos is joining in with a campaign to inspire people of all faiths to use prayer towards these three goals for the world: End Extreme Poverty Fight Inequality and Injustice Combat Climate Change Naturally I think it will take more than just prayer to achieve these goals, but prayer is an important part of it. My conception of prayer is that it is something that we do to purify ourselves and more clearly see the part we can play in… Read more

I’ve had some really special moments of my life happen around Hindu holidays. We got married the day after Krishna Janmashtami and got to rock baby Krishna at the temple during our wedding ceremony. And this year it was the morning of Ganesh Chaturthi that I got a definitely positive pregnancy test. Today I go in to the doctor for my second blood test to make sure everything is progressing well, but I’m at four and half weeks pregnant right… Read more

I recorded a video of my attempt at a Maha Ganapati Homam at home (using this site as a guide: I did a pretty terrible job. Thank goodness my friend Anu is coming over tomorrow to do a puja for me! Before you watch the video, I have some news. I got another positive pregnancy test this morning. This time it was a much stronger result and a little later in the game (14 dpo) so my chances of miscarrying… Read more

Ever since I was a little girl I longed for community. I didn’t feel like I belonged anywhere and I was envious of people who were born into tight-knit communities. My best friend Sarah is Jewish and when we were kids I went to her temple and learned about Judaism from her, seriously considering converting because of the community I saw in her culture. I was fascinated with the Amish who draw together into a tight community against outsiders. The… Read more

Sri Ganesha’s birthday is coming up this Thursday September 17th! This is one of my favorite holidays. I love the theme of renewal and turning over our fears, anxieties, and mistakes to Lord Ganesha to take away with Him. Last year’s post has more information about the holiday and how to celebrate (I strongly encourage you to make your own Ganesh murti from the salt and flour dough recipe provided!) This post has more detailed information about Sri Ganesha himself:… Read more

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