The final stretch of Bodhinatha's and Senthilnathaswami's recent visit to Texas took place in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, a vast area with several major cities, dozens of suburbs and a large Hindu population spread throughout.
The first stop was the new temple that is currently under construction in the southwest corner of Fort Worth, the only temple in the DFW Metroplex east of Irving. This location will be crucial, offering a major place of worship that isn't an hour's drive for those who live in this area. The temple's murtis are about to be shipped from Chennai, and the mahakumbhabhishekam date has been set for early June. Bodhinatha will be back then to preside at the event.
An outing to the Dallas World Aquarium with the Param family was great fun, complete with crocodiles, toucans, sloths, exotic amphibians, sharks and a giant manatee, among other attractions.
In Irving, Bodhinatha was the honored guest at the home of Srinivas Bhamidhipaty, a key leader of the Sivam Group, which meets regularly to chant Sri Rudram and perform elaborate Linga puja. The family visited Kauai Aadheenam last year and extended the invitation, and the date happened to be their wedding anniversary. Blessings were flowing strong in Irving!
The last event was a lecture at the Sri Ganesha Temple in Plano. This is also a new temple, currently operating out of a modified house, with a double-wide trailer for classrooms. They broke ground for the building of the new temple structure recently, but currently struggle, as many projects are these days, with raising enough funds. In an area that already has a couple dozen temples, the challenge is understandable. Bodhinatha continued blessings are a boon for their success.
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Hindus believe in each individual as a soul, a divine being who is inherently good. We all have a threefold nature: instinctive, intellectual, intuitive. Develop the intuitive/spiritual/soul nature with compassion, devotion, penance. Use the intellect to help subdue the instinctive mind. Guilt is not a part of Hinduism. There is no eternal hell. You have a continuity of consciousness when you transition to the inner worlds. There is no devil, but there are mischievous "asuras."