Ganesha Chaturthi

Yesterday the aadheenam celebrated Ganesha Chaturthi with a puja and abhishekam in Kadavul temple. After the puja, monks and devotees paraded to the river to submerge the handcrafted clay Ganeshas in its sacred waters, symbolizing Ganesha's release into universal consciousness.

Ganesha Chaturthi, also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi, is the festival day celebrating the birth of Lord Ganesha. One of the great national festivals of India, and the foremost annual festival to Ganesha, it is celebrated on the chaturthi or "fourth day" after the new moon in the Tamil month of Avani (August-September). The temple and home shrine are decorated with banana leaves, sugarcane and strings of mango leaves. We bring baskets of fruits and sweets, especially modaka balls, and place them before the sanctum of Lord Ganesha. He receives special pujas throughout the day and often a festival parade. Each year we obtain or make a small or large soft clay image of Ganapati and use it for worship at home for two to ten days.

Aum śuklāmbaradharaṁ vishṇum
Śaśivarṇaṁ chaturbhujam
Prasanna vadanaṁ dhyāyet
Sarva vighnopa śāntaye

Aum, attired in white and all-pervading,
O moon-hued, four-shouldered One
with smiling face so pleasing,
upon You we meditate
for removing all obstacles.

Ganesha Visarjana Hyperlapse

Ganesha Visarjana at Kauai's Hindu Monastery, August 28, 2014. Shot in Hyperlapse at 10x speed on an iPhone 5S. (Stay tuned for a full slideshow of the festival.)

Ganesha Chaturthi Tomorrow – Golden Gate Mission Murthi Painting

Our beloved Lord Ganesha has a big party tomorrow. All around the world Hindus are preparing Ganesha murthi, most of which can dissolve in the water and getting ready for big pujas follow by the immersion of the murthi's in the the ocean or rivers nearby. Here are pictures from the Golden Gate Mission Ganesha painting session, which is headed up by Karti Katir every year.

Odissi Dance Performance

Recently the aadheenam was blessed with a deepy devotional dance performance. Odissi dance is traditionally performed for the Deity in the temple. The lead dancer and teacher, Colleena Shakti, is a masterful and unusually disciplined exemplar of Odissi dance, an art originally from the state of Orissa. She lives most of the year in Rajasthan and performed during last year's Ganesha Chaturthi. This year she brought a group of students with her, who have been on the island for a dance retreat. She danced four numbers, the first to Lord Ganesha, as tradition requires, and the last was called Moksha. The Banyan Mandapam was infused with a deeply spiritual energy during the dances, and a great joy afterwards as Sadasivanathaswami gave her a golden shawl and our last poster of the 108 tandavas of Lord Siva, and told some Gurudeva stories in the bargain.

Beautiful world. Dance! Dance as you like. Be as a child. Do as you please. Siva Yogaswami

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