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Sadhana: Path of Change

Aum Namah Sivaya

Today our monks begin their new lunar phase. Over the retreat, our traveling swamis, Sadasivanathaswami and Tillainathswami, returned from their 20-day adventure to Singapore, Malaysia and Mauritius. On the same day, Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami and Sannyasin Shanmuganathaswami departed on their trip, of similar length, to the US mainland and Canada. This morning the mathavasis and local members observed the usual 6:00am weekly Siva puja together. With Satguru having just left, this recorded talk was played in Kadavul Temple instead of his usual upadesa. Enjoy!

Sadhana: Path of Change
An audio talk by Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami

The Superconscious Mind – Part Three

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami gives his weekly upadesha in Kadavul Temple at Kauai’s Hindu Monastery in Hawaii. It is part of a series of talks elaborating on the inspired teachings of Śivaya Subramuniyaswami as found in his book Merging With Śiva.

“You must not think the superconscious mind is way out of your reach simply because of the word super, because it is quite the contrary. It is within you. It has always been within you. All you have to do is to reprogram the subconscious a little and move awareness out of the conscious mind, and your journey is within.”

The Superconscious Mind – Part Two

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami gives his weekly upadesha in Kadavul Temple. It is part of a series of talks elaborating on the inspired teachings of Śivaya Subramuniyaswami as found in his book Merging With Śiva.

“Become aware of the totality of Being. This does not take a lot of time. The easiest way, the simplest way, is to be aware of the spine and the energies within the head. Locate the consciousness of energy. Be aware of energy. When you are aware of energy, you automatically forget what you were previously aware of and it fades away. You leave the consciousness of the instinctive-intellectual area of the mind and move into superconsciousness. If you can remain totally centered in awareness of the energy within your spine and the energy within the head, you become aware of the same energy within everybody and everything you see. You are immediately in a superconscious state when this happens. ¶Therefore, the simple goal is, stay in this consciousness of energy for the rest of your life.”

Saiva Siddhanta Church Sishya Family on Pilgrimage

Roshan and Vandana Nathoo, with their sons Tarun, Kavish and Kapil, are visiting Kauai Aadheenam for the first time. They live in Mauritius on the other side of the globe. A long journey indeed, both travel-wise and after nearly three decades of studying Gurudeva's teachings, passing along those teachings to new seekers, attending, supporting and serving tirelessly at our Mauritius Spiritual Park, and sharing Hinduism Today magazine with friends.

A couple days ago, Vandana received Vishesha Diksha, the second of two dikshas that Saiva Siddhanta Church sishyas prepare for. Below is the description from Gurudeva's 1995 Saiva Dharma Shastras book, slightly updated for the current context.

Vishesha diksha,"distinguishing" initiation, marks the sishya's formal entrance into the Sri Subramuniya Rishi Gotra, our lineage's select assembly of followers, affectionately known as chelas. After this initiation, the devotee is obligated to personally, daily perform the Saiva Atmartha Puja, which now has new power. This worship is performed during the early morning, followed by scriptural study and 108 repetitions of the Panchakshara Mantra. The puja obligation of vishesha diksha is not fulfilled by attending the puja performed by the head of the house in the shrine room. Each member who has received this initiation performs the puja privately (the long, medium or short version) and then attends the family puja as well. Vishesha diksha is also the empowering to perform yoga, to worship internally and undertake serious austerities. This diksha opens access into inner realms heretofore not accessible. As part of the diksha, the sishya voices and signs the following solemn vow binding herself and her family line to the Sri Subramuniya Rishi Gotra. Vishesha diksha brings the devotee more deeply into the study of Shum, my magical language of meditation, through the Shum Tyaef Lexicon.

Vishesha Diksha Vrata
"Prostrations to the holy feet of Lord Ganesha! Aum Sivaya! I pledge my loyalties to the Saiva Swami Sangam of Saiva Siddhanta Church, to the monistic Saiva Siddhanta theology of Rishi Tirumular and, most importantly, to the holy feet of my satguru in this life, Bodhinatha Veylanswami, as I enter the Sri Subramuniya Rishi Gotra. In doing so, I rededicate myself to the Santana Dharma and now bind myself to the congregation of devotees of Saiva Siddhanta Church, those who uphold the Saiva Dharma--Dancing with Siva: Hinduism's Contemporary Catechism and the Creed for Saivite Hindus--and seek to remold the Saiva karma by doing penance for the entire Saivite world as it moves from an agricultural into a technological era and on into a new age of space. As I sit before Guru Mahasannidhanam and the Saiva swamis and the gotra of devotees, I bow before the holy feet of Lord Nataraja, pledging my allegiance as a soldier of the within and a silent minister, emissary of duty to be well performed. I have enjoined my three bodies--soul, mental and physical--to propel new members into our fellowship and make them comfortable in our congregation. May Lord Ganesha bless me, may Lord Murugan bless me, may Lord Siva bless me. May Satguru bless me in this and from inner worlds as I join for all time as a Sivathondar the great congregation of Saiva Siddhanta Church and irrevocably blend my karma with its dharma. Anbe Sivamayam Satyame Parasivam." -------------------------

After the diksha, Kavish and Kapil read and signed pledges to perform the "Ten-Minute Spiritual Workout" and follow the yamas and niyamas to the best of their ability.

The eldest son, Tarun, will be staying on to serve with the monks for five or six months before embarking on university studies.

Sanskrit Guide Completed

The Sanskrit Guide, at, was initiated by Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami to help devotees improve their Sanskrit chanting. He named a few areas in particular, namely, attention to: aspirates, retroflex letters, compound consonants, sibilants (the three "s" sounds) and long vowels. Accelerating from his initial thrust of Guru Shakti, the course was developed over a two-year period with the guidance and genius of Adaityananda, a Sanskrit aficionado, teacher and translator. It includes text lessons, exercises (with audio), charts, illustrations, and supplementary videos. The core idea is as follows. Because of Sanskrit's structural consistency and phonetic nature, you will swiftly build a firm foundation for correct chanting if you learn: proper pronunciation of the vowels and consonants (~51 sounds in all) this means learning the source place of each group of letters (five families, basically) in the vocal system: guttural, palatal, cerebral (retroflex), dental, and labial. Learn the brilliant structural pattern within all five families of consonants: unaspirated, aspirated, voiced, unvoiced and nasal learn to chant syllables rather than words or lines of text learn to correctly divide lines of Sanskrit into syllables by following a few simple rules learn how to recognize which syllables are "guru" (strong, 2 beats, and which are "laghu" (not strong, 1 beat), and chant accordingly with precision. Mark the "long" syllables with bold or highlighting. learn to mentally cognize precisely each sound you chant by paying attention to the text, or memorizing the chant, so there is no ambiguity. You know, for example, if you see a you would knowingly and caringly pronounce it as a retroflex letter, never pronounce it as a dental t. In the beginning stages, it is important to read as you chant, so you stay "on script" and don't develop bad habits. Like playing a musical instrument, it does no good to practice a mistake over and over again. While the tendency is to want to jump in and "learn a lot of chants," a better way to spend your time is to master the above areas. Then you will be able to apply those skills to every mantra, every word, every shloka that you encounter. Then, rather than learning to chant new mantras poorly, you will learn quickly to chant anything well with a minimal amount of practice! Sound good? If so, this is the course for you!

The Superconscious Mind – Part One

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami gives his weekly upadesha in Kadavul Temple. It is part of a series of talks elaborating on the inspired teachings of Śivaya Subramuniyaswami as found in his book Merging With Śiva.

"We have to adjust our subconscious to the idea that we are a superconscious being, rather than an instinctive being or an intellectual being driven by the impulses of the five senses. Awareness is the core of us. If we dropped off this physical body today, we would be a superconscious being without a physical body. If we stepped into another physical body tomorrow, we would still be a superconscious being, but with another physical body, different than the one we had yesterday, with an entirely new subconscious and new external environment."

The Sub of the Subconscious Mind – Part 3

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami gives his weekly upadesha in Kadavul Temple at Kauai’s Hindu Monastery in Hawaii. It is part of a series of talks elaborating on the inspired teachings of Śivaya Subramuniyaswami as found in his book Merging With Śiva.

"As we study the mystical teachings of our religion, we begin to reprogram the subconscious mind and mold it like we mold clay. We become more conscious of our fears. We tell ourselves, “There is nothing to be afraid of. There is not one thing to be afraid of.” We are able to talk to the subconscious mind in this way. It is called affirmation. “I am a fearless being. I am a fearless being,” we keep saying to ourselves time and time and time again. In affirming this truth we begin reeducating or reprogramming the subconscious mind. Finally, we begin to remove the layers upon layers covering the soul."

The Associated Press Interviews Satguru

As you know from earlier posts, the Associated Press came to Kauai to do a story on Iraivan and Kauai Aadheenam. Yesterday the writer/videographer team met with Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami in the Guru Peedam. It was a rich forty-five minutes, with questions focused almost exclusively on Saivism, something we don't often see from the press. When their story appears (and the attending 3-4 minute film), we will share and you will enjoy what Satguru had to say.

The Sub of the Subconscious Mind – Part 2

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami gives his weekly upadesha in Kadavul Temple. It is part of a series of talks elaborating on the inspired teachings of Śivaya Subramuniyaswami as found in his book Merging With Śiva.

"Through the powers of meditation, one can straighten out a few of the subsubconscious mind’s predominant misprogrammings that cause tendencies that make us act in certain ways. The subsubconscious mind can be understood consciously when the thoughts which created this “sub” are traced. These will usually be found when the conscious mind is at its lowest ebb."

Saiva Siddhanta Church Sishya Receives Mantra Diksha

On the auspicious full moon day of Guru Purnima, Gunamaya Sivananda from Tijuana, Mexico, received mantra diksha from Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami after several years of study and sadhanas. She now joins the fellowship of Dikshasishyas in Saiva Siddhanta Church. Mantra Diksha is formal blessings from Satguru for "Aum Namasivaya" to become the mantra used for performing daily japa-- chanting a mantra 108 times. A summary explanation from Dancing with Siva book-- Is Initiation Necessary to Perform Japa? LOKA 138 The most precious of all aivitemantras,Nama ivya is freely sung and chanted by one and all.Mantra dkshbestows the permission and power forjapa yoga.Without this initiation, its repetition bears lesser fruit. Aum. BHSHYA The Pachkshara Mantra is the word of God, the name and total essence of iva. But to chant Nama ivya and to be empowered to chant Nama ivya is likened to the difference between writing a check without money in the bank and writing a check with money in the bank. Nama ivya is the gateway toyoga. Initiation from an orthodoxguruis given after preparation, training and attaining a certain level of purity and dedication. Thegurubestows the authority to chant Nama ivya. After initiation, the devotee is obligated to intone it regularly as instructed. This forges theishya'spermanent bond with theguruand his spiritual lineage,sampradya,and fires the process of inner unfoldment. From the lips of my Satguruntha I learned Nama ivya, and it has been the central core of my life, strength and fulfillment of destiny. The secret of Nama ivya is to hear it from the right lips at the right time. Then, and only then, is it the most powerful mantra for you. Theiva Sahitaffirms, "Only the knowledge imparted by aguru,through his lips, is powerful and useful; otherwise it becomes fruitless, weak and very painful." Aum Nama ivya.

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