Bodhinatha's visit in Mauritius was uplifting at many levels. On Sunday 14th, a seminar was organized at the Swami Vivekananda Convention Centre at Pailles, a state of the arts Conference Centre for international events. The main topic of the seminar was Saivism, precisely on Saiva Siddhanta philosophy.
Here we see Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, arriving at the centre in the morning led by traditional nadeswaran and Tavil
Bodhinatha performs an arati at the small Ganesha Shrine seeking the Lord's Blessings before starting the event of the day.
Everything was nicely set up by sishyas on the eve. This morning the conference room was already full with participants from all over the island to hear the lofty teachings of saivism from the Guru Himself.
Kulapati Manon, Acharya Arumugaswami and Sadhaka Nandinatha in the front row…
The keynote presentation was amazingly well done and everyone was stunned at the graphic display and appreciated the way age old truth of saivism could be so hi tech taught.
At a time the national MBC TV crew was there to take a few shots.
Bodhinatha explained about the beliefs and practices of saivism, about the Vedas and Agamas in such clear terms that everyone could grasp their meanings easily.
All the eyes are on Bodhinatha…
We had a few guests invited to the seminar. They showed their appreciation the way Bodhinatha presented the teachings of Saivism.
Bodhinatha also talked about the relevance of the Tirukural in the modern age and everyone laughed with the pleasant anecdotes used by the Guru to better illustrate key concepts on human values as elucidated by Tiruvalluvar.
One can see Sivachariya swami Umapathi,( with the shawl), a highly respected priest in Mauritius. Many temple leaders also attended the event.
After the end of the first session, just before the coffee break, a group of sishyas came on stage to humbly offer Bodhinatha and the participants a taste of Saivite traditional music. Here is member Padmasree Ramsamy from Henrieta, singing in carnatic a song to Lord Ganapati. Padmasri is only 17, and to what observers say, is very good in carnatic music which she has learnt since her childhood at the Indira Gandhi Cultural Centre, run by the Government of India, in Mauritius.
Then a vina recital followed by Kulamata Premila Manick who has completed her degree studies in music and has just passed her BA Music (Vocal & Vina) at the University of Madras, India.
Premila has been one of the key Church members setting up Bodhinatha's seminar at SVICC.
The artists were accompanied on the mrdangam by Sivarathna Manick, 16 years, quite talented for his age on this age old percussion instrument so sacred to Saivism.
Here is Jambalini, playing the vina.
We shall be posing a second series of photos of Bodhinatha's Mauritius Seminar at SVICC in next coming TAKA.
"Temples with multiple deities can be confusing, especially for today's Hindu youth. For clarity, we need to bring forward a more precise understanding of the different Hindu denominations and how the different Gods are viewed from within each denomination. For spiritual advancement it is best to focus on one deity and get to the vibration that deity. When we hear teachings from various Hindus, it is important to understand and identify which denomination they are speaking from. This will avert confusion when that teaching gets contradicted in a different context where someone is talking about the same subject but from a different philosophical background."
Bodhinatha reviews the main characteristic of Saivite philosophy and practice with an indepth focus on the four stages of religions evolution, chariya, kriya, yoga and jnana. He highlights how this shows that Saiva Siddhanta is unique and quite from the modern practice of Hinduism as Vedanta