Riccardo Morano, who is studying the Master Course and considering becoming a Hindu and possibly a monk one day, had little direct experience of our Saiva culture. He lives in upstate New York and we arranged for him to go to Toronto and spend a weekend with the Tamil community there and worship at the Sri Varasiththi Vinaayagar Kovil (Ganesha temple) managed by the Sri Lankan community.
Well, his prarabdha karmas were such that he ended up staying with the two priests from Pillaiyarpatti in the priest’s house. Something we had not planned. Here is Riccardo helping carry Ganesha during the weekly Friday “Vasanda Mandavam Puja.”
Riccardo with the priest Kumaran and Vignesh Markandu who helped facilitate his visit. A short but needed and intensive experience of Saivism.
"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