The Wrong Mantra

I've spoken before about how challenging meditation has been for me. Part of me wants to still my mind but the mind hates that! What a lot of meditation resources leave out is the fact that it is really hard work. Stilling the mind, ceasing thoughts for even a single moment, is enormously challenging.If you're trying meditation you should know that it isn't easy. But you should also know that there are things that could make it a little easier. Such as practicing a style of meditation that … [Read more...]


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My Mahashivaratri Prayer!

For your enjoyment I have created a video of me performing a short Shiva puja for Mahashivratri.For the rest of the day I will be fasting and then this evening singing bhajans until 11:00 pm at a friend's house. Hopefully the roads will be better by then. I was going to go to the temple this morning for a puja but there is a lot of snow and ice and our roads haven't been plowed!UPDATE: There has been a lot of snow here (though nothing like Boston to the north of us). Though I dug my … [Read more...]


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Happy Mahashivratri!

Lord Shiva's blessings to you all! Thank you for being part of this journey with me! If you missed it, here is my post with information on how to celebrate: Mahashivratri is Coming Up … [Read more...]


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Shiva, my old friend

A little while ago a commenter here on the blog summed me up. They said I was an Advaitan with Shivite leanings. I thought about that and wondered if that is what I am. There's no doubt that I'm an Advaita Vedantist. That is my branch of Hinduism for sure. And there is also no doubt that Lord Shiva is the focus of my practice.You may remember my stories about the Nataraja statue that I discovered when I was 18 and about to leave for college. I had grown up with a lot of Indian philosophy … [Read more...]


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Mahashivrathri is Coming Up!

This Tuesday (17/2/2015) is "Shiva's Great Night." This is one of the most important holidays of the year for me. Tomorrow I'll explain my relationship with Lord Shiva. Until then here's some information for you to help you celebrate the occasion!About Mahashivratri: my post from 2013More about Mahashivratri plus My Celebrations from 2014Again this year I will be fasting and attempting to keep a vigil. Again I will be joining my Sathya Sai Baba friends for bhajan singing. At home … [Read more...]


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Book Club: How To Become a Hindu (Chapter One)

The well respected Himalayan Academy and their guru Subramuniyaswami put out a book several years ago called How To Become a Hindu. Over the next few weeks I'll be reading the chapters and discussing each one individually. Today we're looking at the first chapter: Personal Encounters with Hinduism.I'm not sure why they chose to put this as the first chapter. It's a lot of personal stories from people who went through Subramuniyaswami's "ethical conversion" and how it helped them and … [Read more...]


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Maha Shivratri: Shiva’s Big Night [Hindu Holiday]

This year Maha Shivratri is on the last day of February, Friday February 28th. (Take a look at the words themselves and the meaning will become easily clear. "Maha" means "great" and you may have heard it before in places like Gandhi's title Mahatma, meaning "Great Soul [Atman]. "Shiva" is clear. Attached to "Shiva" is "Ratri" which is the Hindi word for "night.")This is a day to seek Shiva's blessings and you know this year I will be joining the many other women who ask Shiva to bless them … [Read more...]


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Maha Shivaratri

The "great night of Shiva" was this past weekend: Saturday overnight into Sunday.Because Shiva is a God of meditation, austerity, and contemplation, this festival is much less about frolicking than many others. This is a night for dedication and discipline. It is traditional to fast during the day and then stay up all night praying to Shiva. Interestingly, even though Shiva is very monk-like, he is also the God that women pray to for good husbands and a happy marriage.Some say that the o … [Read more...]


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Meet a Goddess: Parvati

Parvati is the wife of Shiva.She represents love and devotion. She is also called Shakti, the energy (particularly female energy) of the universe. She is also associated with Durga and sometimes Kali as well. The name Parvati means "she of the mountains." Since she and Shiva are both associated with austerity and living away from the world, they are connected with mountain living.It is through Parvati/Shakti that all life energy comes. (In Shakta texts, she is said to ascend beyond even … [Read more...]


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