Yogaswami in London

Enjoy these photos of the recent puja to Yogaswami performed in London.

"Everything is in you. You don't want to know. Let God speak in you; otherwise there is no God. He is in you, in me, in everyone." Yogaswami

Celebrating Yogaswami’s Mahasamadhi

Today we celebrate Paramaguru Siva Yogaswami. Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, his monastics and local members all gathered in the Guru Pitam this morning for a short puja to Yogaswami's corner shrine. His 108 names were chanted and Natchintanai were sung. Following the puja everyone sat for meditation. Jai Sivaguru Yogaswami! Om Namah Sivaya. Sivaya Namah Om.

From Words of Our Master:

Yogar Swamigal was perhaps the greatest of the mystics that lived in recent times. He was immaculate in appearance as he was pure in thought. The silver-white hair and beard along with the spotlessly white raiment he wore were symbolic of his saintliness and sanctity. He traversed the length and breadth of his country and transformed the lives of many who otherwise would have gone astray.

The epoch in which he lived saw many an upheaval of regeneration and much degeneration of cherished values as well. But amidst all the transient phenomena he was as firm as Mount Kailas; a refuge to souls in distress and despair. He infused faith in his devotees and led them out into the light of hope and happiness. Even those whose contacts with him were casual or cursory had a glimpse of the spiritual significance of life.

Celebrating Mahasivaratri

Last night, Satguru, the Monastics, local members and visiting pilgrims gathered together to celebrate Mahasivaratri in Kadavul Temple. The night began at 7:00pm with some bhajans followed a half an hour later by a Siva Homa. All the monks were present and chanted an energetic Sri Rudram while Natyam Nandinatha performed the Homa and Satguru gave offerings into the flames. The buttery smell of ghee being offered to the fire and the smell of incense filled the air. Following the homa everyone listened to a recording from 1990 of a talk that Gurudeva had given on Sivaratri night. After Gurudeva's words had finished, the temple fell into silence as the group of staunch devotees closed their eyes in meditation on Siva's formless perfection. Their innermost Self. Next, the Siva Kumbha from the homa was paraded outside and around the flagpole by Satguru before being placed in the inner sanctum with an arati. By now it was 10:15pm. Time for a short break.

Upon reconvening in the temple, Satguru gave a wonderful talk about the original subtleties of Yoga as found in Patanjali's Yoga Sutras and in Gurudeva's writings. Upon concluding his talk, the final Rurdabhishekam began. Beginning with milk, six different pairs of monks were responsible for pouring each abhisheka item over the small crystal Sivalingam that resides just in front of Nataraja. In a grand finale, Satguru poured the Siva Kumbha over the Lingam. After the Nataraja and the lingam were decorated and the final arati was performed. The Final Puja ended at exactly 12:00am. A perfect end to a perfect night in a perfect Universe. Om Namah Sivaya. Sivaya Namah Om.

Thai Pusam Kavadi

Enjoy these slightly belated images from Thai Pusam. These are kavadi that two of our monks prepared. Kavadi is a penance offered to Lord Karttikeya, especially during Tai Pusam, consisting of carrying in procession a heavy, beautifully decorated, wooden object from which pots of milk hang which are to be used for His abhisheka. The participant's tongue and other parts of the body are often pierced with small silver spears or hooks, though our monks did not observe this part. Vel Muruga!

Celebrating Thai Pusam

Vel Murugaa!
We recently celebrated Thai Pusam at the Aadheenam, honoring our beloved Lord Muruga with a powerful and piercing abhishekam in Kadavul Temple. With the mathavasi and all sincere, mindful devotees present, it made for a special event shared by all. As stated in Dancing With Siva "Thai Pusam occurs on Pushya nakshatra in January-February. During this festival we fast and perform public penance, called kavadi, seeking Karttikeya's blessings to dispel our selfishness, pride and vanity."

After the offering of fresh milk from our aadheenam cows, Muruga is offered Yogurt, fresh citrus juice, panchaamritham, Vibhuti, a select and sacred blend of herbs, rose water and more. At the Aadheenam, we typically use the panchaamritham recipe of Chidambaram Kovil--fresh bananas, ghee, milk, honey and jaggery.

After a beautiful Alankaram, the final arati is offered. It is at this point where all temple bells are rung, mantrams chanted their loudest and the focused intensity of the pujaris are at their greatest. It is here when the darshanam of the Deity pours forth, where the Lord Murugan decongests muddled karmas of the devotee, removing unmindfulness and fear and replacing them with wisdom and courage. Veils are lifted, limitations released, and minds cleared at that exact point. Om Saravanabava Om.

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