Bodhinatha reports on his recent trip to Mauritius, Malaysia and Singapore. On the way to Mauritius he stopped in Malaysia and had an uplifting and well attended satsang with our Church mission there. In Mauritius he talked about parenting and had a nice homa at our Spiritual Park there, including giving some dikshas and observing some young people taking brahmacharya vratas and the like.
Good morning, everyone! It is nice to be back at our Sun One homa.
I am still in the vibration of the recent journey. So I thought, this morning, I would share a few stories about many of the things that happened on the trip. Save the high powered talk for the future.
One of the nice features of being computerized is that we were able to send back pictures as we went, with stories and so forth. Even when we got to Singapore, they all ready knew about what happened in Mauritius, commenting on it. Things like, "The only time we ever get five thousand Hindus together is Thai Pusam." It is a big event to them and to think five thousand people had gone to the Dharmasala on Ganesha celebration day.
It was a very uplifting trip, very successful and very appreciated by everyone. We started out in Malaysia at a Mission Satsang. The only problem was there was more people outside the house than were inside the house. It was Guhan Sivalingam house. Those of you who know it, he has a small outdoor courtyard but we were even out in the street. We had so many people there at once. They had a nice little parade, nagaswaram and tavil parade and they had to get us there on time because the nagaswaram had to go to the temple. We got to walk up the street, half a block with the nagaswaram and tavil. We had a very long Guru puja, with lots of chanting. We had a chance with Tyaganatha and Mahadevan to do a short Ganesha puja, he has a very large Ganesha there. It is three or four foot Ganesha, on a shrine on his front porch.
Then, we gave a short talk on the 'Nine Qualities to Cultivate in Children'. We carried this everywhere, handed them out. I will summarize that later at the end, what we said. We were very well received and so the only problem is, I have to split the group or do something next time. We can't be outside and in the street. Too many people, so we will have to meet in two different homes or half the group one night and half the group another night. We will work that out for the next Malaysia trip.
Then, we went on to Mauritius and the first evening there was the Saturday, which was again a talk on 'Parenting'. We had sent all of the talks to Mauritius ahead of time, so they could translate them into Creole. That worked out really well because it was a prepared translation for each of the talks. It was not just spontaneous trying to understand what I said, though I did throw in some stories and different comments that were not in the text.
That introduced the material, part of the idea was not that I thought everyone would understand everything about the Nine Qualities all at once but just to get the idea out there. To get people thinking about it, talking about it, which it did very well.
Then, the next day was Sunday at the Dharmasala which was primarily for members and students and the regular devotees who attend. On the first Sunday of the month they regularly have the homa ceremony conducted by the men. So they moved that to the second Sunday. This was the second Sunday of the month constituting their monthly homa ceremony. The men conducted a very nice homa and we gave Visesha Diksha to Sivakumaran and Kavita Mardemootoo and quite a lot of brahmacharya vratas, I think a veggie vrata, a couple of miscellaneous vratas popped up. Lots of teenagers taking their brahmacharya vrata.
I gave a talk on diksha. The idea that diksha is like, I gave the analogy, to the automobile. Gurudeva used something like that before. You are sitting in an automobile and you want to get from here to Lihue. The first thing that is needed is, the ignition needs to get a spark to start the car running. The diksha is like the spark. It sparks a process in motion. But the car is just sitting there unless you drive it. You won't get to Lihue just because you got a spark and the engine started. No, you have to drive it to Lihue, you have to put forth effort.
So, in the same way with each initiation, there is a sadhana given. In order to drive, in order to move forward or make spiritual progress from the initiation, we need to be regular in the performance of the sadhana. Otherwise, it is not enough. The car is sitting there, eventually it is going to run out of gas and stop without going anywhere unless we drive it. Similarly, unless we perform the sadhanas we are given we don't make the progress. Of course, in our case the mantra diksha has the japa sadhana. Visesha diksha has the puja sadhana to go along with it.
So that worked out well. The Mandapam looks beautiful with a lot of grown vegetation around it giving shade . That part of the property looks quite finished and quite nice. But further down, it is obviously not finished yet.