On Sunday we had a small contingent of students led by Sarah Hadmack who is a Religious Studies Instructor from Windward Community College and University of Hawaii. Sarah believes coming to Kauai is a wonderful educational opportunity for her students and many more wanted to come.
After giving the group a basic introduction to our Natha Sampradaya we asked if Sivakatirswami could come join us at the Iraivan site and answer some of the more academic questions the students had.
Sivakatirswami has worked extensively with Himalayan Academy students in years past and has a vibrant and very connecting spirit with students. Among much joy and laughter were questons regarding the way in which “yoga” is being taught in studios all over the United States today with all the emphasis on “asana postures” with very little importance being prescribed for the real ancient core practices of yoga and internalized worship.
Other subjects included; the “intellectual misrepresentation” of claims that all religions are one while ignoring the unique differences in core beliefs and goals; how Saiva Siddhantans look at God, the Satguru; and how faith must eventually meet the litmus test of direct experience, and many more. Sivakatirswami came bearing gifts of the new edition of Hinduism Today for all those present and all those left behind in Oahu.
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Lord Siva is the Supreme Being of the universe, not one of many gods. To Saivites Siva is the supreme being; to Vaishnavites Vishnu is the supreme being. The soul starts with experiencing the world. On one side the soul is pulled by veiling grace toward the world. On the inside the soul is pulled by revealing grace toward God. Resolving karma, maturing in the world, fulfilling dharma, we move toward imperturbability, realization, moksha.