Path to Siva: A Catechism for Youth



Welcome to Path to Siva, a Catechism for Youth. We hope you enjoy this colorful book. It is based on Dancing, Living and Merging with Siva, the Master Course Trilogy created by my Gurudeva, Sivaya Subramuniyaswami. Path to Siva presents all of the important teachings of our Saiva religion, Shuddha Saiva Siddhanta. It is written with youth in mind, but is also ideal for anyone who wants a condensed version of the Master Course. Note that we have reluctantly adopted the English-language style of using masculine pronouns, such as He and His, when referring to God and the Gods, even though they are beyond gender. Other options, for now, are awkward.§

For Youth: The sixty-eight lessons in this book cover the most important things a Saivite Hindu needs to know. Each lesson is short—just one or two pages—but packed with information. Here you can find answers to questions about God Siva, Lord Ganesha, Lord Murugan and the devas—how they can help us in our lives, and how to contact them through temple worship and home puja. You will find clear explanations of karma, dharma and reincarnation, and how to use japa, meditation and affirmations to make your life better. You will learn the best ways to live in order to achieve your most important goals. The lessons include insights on home life, getting along with others, religious tolerance, vegetarianism and caring for the environment. They cover difficult philosophical areas, like death and dying, reincarnation, sin and evil. Absorbing these short essays will provide a clear understanding of our practices, beliefs and philosophy and give you a deep comprehension of life that few people have.§

For Teachers: This book is intended for youth age 10 and older. As the teacher, you should be sure your students understand all the words of the lesson text. This will make the meaning much clearer in their minds. Encourage them to ask questions.§

For Parents: This may be the most important study your child undertakes. It is the study of Saivism, the oldest form of Hinduism, and more specifically of Saiva Siddhanta. Some parents feel that the study of religion is not important, that their children should focus solely on academic studies. A wiser approach is to include both. The study of Saivite Hinduism as presented here explains many practices that will help your child excel in his or her academic studies. It also creates a more balanced life for children, a happier and less stressful childhood and more mature relationships. Take an interest in your child’s study of Path to Siva by reading all the lessons. Consider this catechism the education of your child’s soul and conscience, a spiritual training that will prepare him or her to understand our religion, practice it with knowledge and be able to use its wisdom and insights in facing the challenges of life. Encourage your child; help your child with the lessons and you may find answers to questions of your own in the process.§


Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami§

163rd Jagadacharya of the Nandinatha Sampradaya’s Kailasa Parampara§

Guru Mahasannidhanam§

Kauai Aadheenam, Hawaii, USA§