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Sri Lanka – Part 1

Sannyasin Yoginathaswami and Yogi Adinatha were joined by long time members of Saiva Siddhanta Church, Dohadeva and Nagavati Sanmugam for a five day pilgrimage to the home of our Parampara, the Jaffna District of Sri Lanka.

Jaffna is a peninsula separated from the rest of the island nation by a tiny strip of land called Elephant Pass, and it is here that we begin our tale. There is a tree at elephant pass which has a gnarled root resembling Ganesha. A tiny temple has been built around it and the root is considered a Ganesha murthi. Camphor is burned continuously and tradition has it that this worship has been consistent for nearly 1000 years. It is traditional that anyone entering the Jaffna peninsula by road stop at the Elephant Pass Temple. Gurudeva stopped at this temple when he was first brought to Jaffna by Kandiah Chettiar about 70 years ago, and it is only fitting that we stopped to worship as well.

We entered Jaffna late at night and were up early the next morning to begin a whirlwind tour of temples and other sites throughout the area. It was hard to imagine we packed so much into one day.

We are being hosted at the Kopay Kottam, a children's school run by long time members Rishi Thondunatha and his mother Sivaloshiani. A small group of children waited hours for our arrival so that they could sing for us and get the blessings of Yoginathaswami.

The next day we are up bright and early to begin our pilgrimage. Without having planned it, our pilgrimage has begun on the full moon day of May, sacred to Lord Murugan and the day that Gurudeva was initiated by Yogaswami.

Sri Satguru Yogaswami Visits Our Monastery

Sri S. Vinayagalingam of Sugar Land, Texas, was visiting our Minimela book-&-gift shop, looking over our books. When he turned around there was Sri Satguru Yogaswami, looking at him! The vision lasted about two seconds, he said. We asked him to show us the spot. And there you see him, standing on that very spot, as the Satguru appeared. When we took the photo, we realized Yogaswami had appeared right next to the shelf dedicated to him (see the Yogaswami items to the right of Sri Vinayagalingam.)Visitors had commented lately that the Minimela felt like a shrine. Well, now it has been proved to be one. Aum Namasivaya.

Monastery Pilgrims

The Ganapati Kulam had the fortune of hosting two lovely pilgrims at the morning editorial meeting. Indivar Sivanathan, a long-time disciple of Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami, and Gananatha Subrahmanyam from Quebec. Gananatha is here on pilgrimage until the 23rd of May and is filled and thrilled with being here for the first time. "It all came together in about three hours," he mentioned during the morning meeting, "I had an opening, booked the hotel and then booked the tickets and said 'OK, this is happening!'" Indivar is currently helping the monastery with her advanced media skills, specifically in 360 degree photography for a future virtual tour. You can see her awesome work on her website.

Monastery Pilgrim Update

This week the monastery was visited by Aiyasawmy Dorairajan, a long-time devotee of Gurudeva's work. His parents, Trichinopoly and Meena, were studying with the late Markandeya Peruman in the 80s and are devotees of the Meenakashi Temple in Pearland, Texas. Gurudeva visited their home several times and was received with a pada puja. This memory was regaled by Aiyasawmy during the Ganapati Kulam morning meeting, something that has stuck with him since. Aiyasawmy is a doctor performing his residency in Louisiana.

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