Here we have a retrospective from Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami's recent trip to Texas. On the evening of February 8, Bodhinatha visited the Hindu temple in Flower Mound, north of Dallas. Here are some devotees excited that Bodhinatha is about to arrive.
First, arati for Ganesha
… and all the Gods in the temple, many of whom are still photos and images. Full size Deities are being carved in India for this burgeoning temple in a community with tens of thousands of Hindus nearby.
Bodhinatha blesses everyone as they adorn him with a fine wool shawl (which was much appreciated, given the near-freezing weather!).
Bodhinatha presented his 2010 Keynote presentation for temples entitled "Some Practical Suggestions for Hindu Families and Temples," which covers four topics.
The topics are: (1) Questions from Children and Youth, (2) The Sacred and the Secular, (3) Challenges and Opportunities Facing Hinduism in the Western World, and (4) Home Puja.
Initially about 30 people were in attendance, which we thought was great for a weeknight. By the end there were over 50.
A slide from the Sacred and Secular portion of Bodhinatha's presentation.
After the talk, the priest, who is from Tirupati, gifted Bodhinatha the traditional dakshina tray, with fruits, veshti cloth, betel leaves and all.
And then, the final arati.
Everyone joined in singing the Hindi arati song as Bodhinatha offered the arati to Lord Ganesha.
Thanks to Kewal and Rani Sawhney, who visited Kauai Aadheenam a few months ago, heard Bodhinatha was coming to Texas and invited him to speak to their new temple group. Thanks to everyone at this beautiful little temple. All of us at Kauai Aadheenam send many blessings for the growth and success of your temple.
Bodhinatha's Latest Upadeshas: "The Difference in Practice of Theism and Monism" (September 3, 2014)
During a puja we're in Theism, to receive the blessings of the Deity. After a puja we can go within our self in meditation, giving up the idea of an external Deity, Monism. Monistic Theism: Advaita Ishvaravada. Advaita means the Monism; Ishvara means the Theism.
In Shum we use two words that relate to that: shumif and dimfi. First, perfect your Theism. Then become a monist. That's called Saiva Siddhanta; one leads to the other.