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.
Within our Saiva Siddhanta Holy Scriptures the Saiva Agamas explain the basis of temple ceremonies and worship plus yoga and jnana. The Tirukural was considered by Gurudeva to be "the most accessible and relevant sacred text." In it are practical and helpful guidelines for our conduct in every day life. The point of family life is to gain steady improvement, forever, in self control in the midst of responsibilities in the fulfillment of family dharma. Meanwhile, not taking detachment too far but taking it in the sense of spiritually looking for happiness, not outside in other people or possessions, the world, but inside ourselves and then sharing it with family and friends. "We regard the writings of our satgurus as scripture."
Path to Siva, Lesson 20
Tirukural, Introduction and Contents
Tirukural, Chapter 15 Possession of Self-Control
"The temple enables us to feel the presence of God, Gods and devas." We use our inner eyes to see what's going on in the temple, the three worlds. In the temple we're being good dvaitists in the dimfi perspective, focused in bhakti upon God Siva. In meditation we're monists, in the shumif perspective. We claim our oneness with Siva, Sivoham, I am Siva. In surrender, shrinking the ego through devotion, we have a realization that we're not the doer, that Siva is doing it all. Siva's energy comes through our soul.