Bodhinatha and Palaniswami were able to connect again to the internet today. They continue their stay at Golok Dham in Delhi.
Here are some brief notes from them on activities there. Bodhinatha includes some news from earlier days:
Wednesday Nov 17th
Morning visit to Artha worksite. Selvanathan was there for most of the visit. Lots of pieces of Nandi Mandapam being carved. It was our first look at a section of the perimeter wall. It is wider and taller than imagined. A few refinements were made in the ornamentation. A calculation was done on how long it will take to carve.
After lunch and a short rest we flew to Delhi and were met by by our Hinduism Today correspondent Rajiv Malik and Brahmachari Vrajvihari Sharan from the Golok Dham Ashram. Drive to Ashram and group dinner shortly after arrival.
Thursday Nov 18th
Morning at Golok Dham. A bit before seven AM we went to the Siva shrine where they have a Narmada lingam, three -- four feet tall and arrived in time to participate in the last part of the Siva puja which Gopal Sharan was conducting himself with priestly assistance for chanting. Next the morning subrahbatam for the Radha Krishna shrine, a break for breakfast and an abhishekam for Acharya Nimbarka. Lunch, rest then the afternoon talks began at 1 PM. The crowd was small, being a weekday afternoon.
However the main crowd was the one reached as a live broadcast on Asta television of the 2 -- 3 PM portion. This part included a short talk by Palaniswami and then the presentation of the Hindu of the Year Award to Sri Gopal Sharan. The head of the Nimbarka Sampradaya gave one of the talks. He is elderly and has the look of a man who has done serious sadhana his whole life. A few misc. meetings finished up the day.
Great session today, including meeting the Nimbarkaacharya, 93 years old, plus my time on Ashta TV (a mere 20 million we are told). Some photos on this later.
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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.