After eight years Bodhinatha felt it was time to upgrade our two primary monastery vehicles. His personal car, which we call our guru vahana, is a new Toyota Prius gas/electric hybrid that gets 50 miles/gallon, replacing the Honda Civic Hybrid we had since 2002. The vehicle used for town trips and other monks’ needs is a new Toyota Sienna minivan, replacing an older Dodge minivan.
This afternoon we had the traditional car blessing.
Siddhanathaswami performs the puja, first to Bodhinatha’s new Prius.
Then to the van.
Limes were placed under the wheels. Then Paramacharya Palaniswami drove the car over them.
Break a coconut, final arati, and we are ready to roll. With gas prices continuing to rise, it’s good to get vehicles with better mileage.
Dharma is religious patterns which when followed promote the wellbeing of the individual, the family and society. Patterns so that the soul matures and gets closer to God, closer to realizing the Divinity within. Dharma is: "The orderly fulfillment of an inherent nature or destiny," working on instinctive, intellectual and intuitive natures. Destiny is fixed: Realization. Personal dharma, "your own perfect pattern in life", is different for the sannyasin and the householder.