With the dark half of the year growing in strength, we increasingly turn inward for reflection. But something compels us to deepen this spiritual warrior’s journey to study our true nature, both the traits that we admire and those we reject. While the land lulls itself to sleep, this marks the time to honor our inner wisdom as well as the potential self-destructive tendencies we all hold inside…
OM JAI JAGDISH HARE
Known as the Universal aarti or ritual song, Om Jai Jagdish Hare is sung often at Diwali celebrations. Different versions exist, but here is the one my family and I sing every year at our puja, or prayer, celebration.
Hey Ma Durga, Hey Ma Durga
Hey Ma Durga, Rakshamam
Hey Ma Durga, Hey Ma Durga
Hey Ma Durga, Pahimam
Om Dum Durgayei Namaha
“Slow down, you move too fast.
You got to make the morning last.”
~ From the 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy) by Simon & Garfunkel
“Life’s like an hourglass, glued to the table
No one can find the rewind button, girl.
So cradle your head in your hands
And breathe… just breathe.”
~ From the song Breathe (2 am) by Anna Nalick
Spiritual warriors on the path toward enlightenment can be driven to speed just as much as any trader on Wall Street. With an inestimable number of bytes slinging through cyberspace at near light speed, we have vast libraries of information and ways to connect at our fingertips. Throughout the history of the technology age, developments have been lauded for their ability to streamline and improve our lives. But instead of having super productive lives with more free time, we’re inundated with a mountain of e-mail, racing to keep up with the latest advancements, and in a continual fight against viruses and attacks on our privacy. Meanwhile, the laundry still piles up in the corner. The answer isn’t to turn away from the wealth of opportunities that progress can bring to our lives. Perhaps the key to a happier, healthier life lies in slowing down enough to become more aware when making the choices that create our world. Continue reading
“My sorrow, when she’s here with me, thinks these dark days of autumn rain are beautiful as days can be; she loves the bare, the withered tree; she walks the sodden pasture lane.” ~Robert Frost
Fall is in the slightly burnt, cool air and in the crinkling of leaves underfoot in the Northeastern Corridor of the United States. School is back in session and vacation dreams have turned to the promise of costumes and pumpkin-carving. We celebrate the official beginning of the season in the Northern Hemisphere today with the Autumnal Equinox, also known as Alban Elfed to Druids and Mabon to other nature-based faiths. Continue reading
Perhaps the most famous Hindu mantra in the West is the Maha Mantra dedicated to the spirit of Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the Universe who descends to the Earth whenever balance needs to be restored between good and evil. Popularized by the Beatles and George Harrison in 1969, the mantra has become synonymous with Western Krishna Consciousness (ISKONN) devotees. But the Hare Krisna mantra dates back more than 5,000 years ago.
“All you need is love, love, love…Love is all you need.”
“In all things, we learn only from those we love.”
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“Love is friendship set to music.”
Western society focuses a wealth of attention on finding and keeping romantic love as illustrated in songs, movies and media. But is this narrow perspective creating a culture of emotional anorexia? Continue reading