Posted by gbSk |

I was fortunate to spend a weekend
in Mumbai recently, and in a single
jam-packed day participated in the age-
old traditions that have kept India alive
with vibrant spirituality: temple worship,
teachings of the spiritual masters and
holy festivals celebrated in grand style.

the day began with pre-dawn puja for
Lord Shiva at the Babulnath Temple
in the heart of the city overlooking
the Arabian Sea. Most of my time is
spent in South India where direct deity
worship is only done by the pujaris. So
it is always exceptional to visit temples
where flowers, fruit, milk, sandal paste
and other items are available for visitors
to do their own personal puja and

I then took a short cab ride to visit
the home of Advaita master Ramesh
Balsekar, who, at the age of 91, still
welcomes any and all to his home on
a daily basis for casual satsang and
question-and-answer sessions. He
delivered his straightforward message
on non-dualism with a delightful sense
of humor in the informal atmosphere of
his living room.

That evening, I joined
an overflowing and enthusiastic crowd
of devotees at the Radha Gopinath
Temple, also known as the ISKCON
Hare Krishna Hare Rama Temple, for
Pushya Abhishek to celebrate the first
day of spring. Imagine hour upon hour
of ecstatic chanting, dancing and being
showered with one ton of multicolored
flower petals, some shipped all the way
from Vrindavan. If George Harrison
had thrown a rave, it would have looked
something like this.

In these unsettling
times, ripe with threats of violence,
modernization and materialism, this
single day served as an uplifting and
comforting reminder that the customs
of ancient India are still alive and well
and readily available for all who have a
desire to participate.



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