As we write, Bodhinatha is on his way to Guyana after a very successful mission in Trinidad. A full report on that trip will come in the days ahead.
In the meantime here are Bodhinatha’s news briefs from his last three days in Trinidad
August 20, Friday
Om Sivaya, everyone,
Morning was a courtesy call to the Trinidad Chinmaya Mission. The young swami is Prakashananda who is from Trinidad. He is busy finishing construction in the next few days in preparation for Swami Tejomayanandaji’s program here Aug 24-29. Evening was back to the Edinburgh Hindu Temple, no talk, instead a special Siva puja conducted by Punditji with devotees assisting.
August 21, Saturday
We checked out of the Carra Suites in Claxton Bay, a courtesy call to the Ganapati Satchidananda Swami temple. It is South Indian in style. Swamiji spends two months of the year here every year. Then to the temple in the sea and continuing on to Tunapuna where the Ragoonanan temple is. Event roughly from noon to 2:30 PM. Started with a simple guru puja to me, then a Siva puja to a large Narmada lingam, my talk of about half and hour and some book signings and finally lunch.
Then we checked in at the nearby Holiday Inn Express, short rest and a visit to Ashwinee’s parents home and dinner at one of their devotee’s homes across the street from the Holiday Inn.
August 22, Sunday
This morning was our second event at the Hari Mandir Tunapuna. It began with a cultural performance that was definitely Trinidadian, a music group including Trinidad steel drums playing instrumental bhajan. They are from the Ganapati Satcidananda Swami Temple. Other cultural performances included sarod, Odissa dancing, singing. Then we gave our talk. The Minister of Education was present and included in his talk an announcement of putting Dancing with Siva, one copy each in public school libraries, believe it is primary. Dancing with Siva has a high popularity here!
Forget to mention that at this temple I am reading both talks from the iPad--a technological breakthrough. No need to print them out or have the larger computer!
"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