Guru is Brahman because he creates for his disciple a new and wondrous world; he is Vishnu because he sustains and protects him; he is Shiva because he annihilates the world of individuality. All great saints have stressed the importance of a guru. In the Ramayana it is said that no one can cross the ocean of samskara without the guru’s help even if he is Brahma or Shiva. Continue reading →
Ma Shakti created Ganesha. She did not desire a son, she created him to be her protector. After Shiva beheaded Ganesha in a fearsome rage, there was pandemonium in the universe. Parvati assumed the form of Kali and was prepared to destroy and devour all the worlds. The Gods and devas were terrified, and the Gods said that they will have to give him some of their attributes. Shiva called him Ganesha which means ruler, gana means a group of people and isha means master. Continue reading →
I love my gifts and enjoy giving gifts. Over the years I have been asking for plants for my birthday. A few days ago was my husband’s birthday and I thought of what happened to my Bael plants, which I had received for two of my birthdays. We have many sacred plants in India and I have been nurturing them. Some survive and some do not. They are very demanding as they need bright sunshine and my neighbor has built a high wall and blocked our sun. Continue reading →
Swami Niranajananda Saraswati wrote about happiness, the first Yogic Yama (restraint). Parvati asked Shiva, how one can remain happy. There was so much unease and distress in the universe. What could her children do? Parvati and Shiva are the eternal couple and parents of the universe. Parvati’s ongoing concern is that her children should remain happy and at peace. Continue reading →
Swamiji has given a wonderful explanation of worship of God as either formless or with a form. Nirakaar is formless and nobody can dispute the statement as no one has seen God. So an individual can say anything about God. He gives an example of three disciples quarrelling over the exact colour of a chameleon. They had all seen the chameleon changing his colours, so they could not agree. Continue reading →
The meaning of Ishta Devata is the personal deity with whom a devotee feels the greatest affinity. According to Swami Sivanananda, our worship of a God is defined by the element which is predominant in us. Our body and mind are composed of five elements. These are earth, water, fire, air and ether. Our elements have to be in harmony for us to tread on the path of self-realization. What ensures that our elements are in balance is the flow of prana. Continue reading →
Mantra means liberation from the thought processes of the mind (manyate trayate). When the thought processes are controlled by the mantras, the consciousness presents itself in its purest, truest nature. Mantras hold the pranic power of speech. The Vedas say that prana is hidden speech, while speech is manifest prana. We speak throughout the outgoing breath and can inhale only when we are not speaking. Continue reading →
And it is Friday again, the day of the Goddess. Sati was the first goddess and she was the daughter of Daksha. She was madly in love with Shiva but her father did not approve of his boisterous friends. She got married to Shiva and Daksha disowned her. Continue reading →
Close your eyes and visualise Shiva. He is blue in colour, he has a serpent wrapped around his neck. The Ganga is cascading down from his head. He has his pet bull, Nandi by his side. There is a crescent moon nesting in his top knot. He is holding a trident. Continue reading →
How do we control Prana? Can we control the wind?
Attempting to controlling our mind, makes us plunge in a constant war with ourselves. What should we do?
We work on purifying the elements of our body and mind. We attempt to unblock the Ida and Pingala nadi, so that the Sushumna nadi can flow. Once the Sushumna nadi flows, our chakras are unblocked. Continue reading →