Thinking about Sivaratri

Tonight as the sun dips and the full moon lifts, Sivaratri begins.

For those who can’t wait, a livecast of the Sivaratri puja is happening in Varansi. Check it out, here. (Hat tip to both Eddie Stern and Robert Moses, and, yes, the last Namarupa Yatra and the one this October did / will stop at this all-powerful temple. Bring your passports!)

Here’s a little more to think about as you prep for tonight’s all-night event. First, from the Broome Street Temple Facebook page, in answer to the question: Why do we stay up all night?:

One symbolic reason for remaining awake all night can be viewed in the following manner: It is has been said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If we wish to achieve something that we see embodied perfectly in another, we may remain near that person, and try to gain the experience of their knowledge through imitating their modes of activity. For example, if I wish to learn how to play an instrument, I could remain with a master musician and follow his instructions, and imitate his methods of practice, until I could play as perfectly as he. Then, after that is achieved, my own unique potential can be fulfilled, as a result of being grounded in the ways of one who has already reached some type of mastery.

Check out the full temple schedule.

And a second thing (hat tip this time to Naren Schreiner) from the Lakshmanjoo Academy:

JOHN: “Notions of thought” means actual thoughts themselves or even thinking of . . . ?

ERNIE: Even the seeds.

SWAMIJI: No, all thoughts.

JOACHIM: Any thinking activity.

SWAMIJI: Things other than spirituality, other than Lord Śiva. Those thoughts also have ended and the ingoing breath and the out-coming breath, these also have stopped.

. . . where these have stopped and all those notions of mind have stopped, that is Śiva rātri, that supreme Śiva rātri. That unique Śiva rātri is glorified. There, that Śiva rātri is glorified,[which generally occurs on] the dark half of the phālguna month98. Śiva rātri you know?

JOHN: Śiva rātri is the night of Śiva that comes in . . .

Om Namah Siva.

Posted by Steve

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Two Ashtangis write about their practice and their teachers.

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