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Pālki at the Rāmnāthi Devasthān

photos of Ramnath and Kamakshi in Palki at Ramnathi Devasthan by Arun Shanbhag

Hindus believe that all things animate and in-animate (manifest or unmanifest) are part of the universal divine consciousness. We generally refer to this divine consciousness as “That”, because any attribute you give it is limiting (see Sant Tulsidas’ beautiful verse describing “That” divine consciousness; also this post on Dwija). In common parlance, we refer to […]

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Amma coming to Boston, July 2012

Amma in Devi Bhava during her Boston visit in 2011. Dates for Amma‘s (Mata Amritanandamayi) Boston tour have been announced and Registration is now open for the Retreat. Here, you can read about my fabulous, life-altering experience with Amma. Hope to see some of you there.

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Break at a Marathi Village

Father and Daughter eating a banana behind the Devi Temple, pics by Arun Shanbhag

During our AstaVinayak (Eight Sacred Ganapati Temples) tour, we stopped at a roadside eatery in rural Maharashtra. After a simple meal (roti & sabzi for us; curd (yogurt) and rice for Meera), I sauntered over to a village square.

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Dussehra: Glory to Durga Devi 2011

Durga Devi preparation, Mumbai 2011 by Arun Shanbhag

Shristhī-sthīthī-laya kārinī Cause of this creation, sustenance & dissolution Wishing you all a Wonderful Dassara. M&M & A

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Meeting Amma in Boston

Prema rasāmrta varshini mātā amrtānandamayi | Prema bhakti sandāyani mātā amrtānandamayi || Showers us with immortal nectar of love, O mother; Grant us the capacity for love & bhakti (selfless devotion), O mother Amritanandamayi || Two weeks ago, I got the opportunity to experience darshan of Mata Amritanandamay, better known as Amma. What started as […]

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Diwali: Madurai Meenakshi Temple

photos of Lighting Oil Lamps at the Meenakshi Temple Madurai by Arun Shanbhag

On this joyous Diwali, Wishing you and all your loved ones God’s amazing grace. Coz, with it comes Peace, Good Health and Success! Happy Diwali Meera, M & A

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Bookseller in Goa

With M & m in Mumbai, I stay at work longer, workout harder and run further. With friends, I laze around more; that means less blogging. But I want to share this beautiful pic of a bookseller I met in Goa. We were on our way back to the Ramnathi Devasthan after visiting some Konkani […]

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Enlightening Maha Shivratri

On this Beautiful Maha Shivratri, May the Grace of Shiva Lead you further Onto the Path of Spiritual Revelation! Har Har Mahadev Mm & A

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Diwali: Tribute to Lakshmi

On this Wonderful Diwali, May the Grace of Lakshmi bring you and your loved ones Peace, Health and Prosperity! Happy Diwali! Meera, M & A Notes are excerpted from my book, Prarthana: A Book of Hindu Psalms; © Arun Shanbhag Mahalakshmi As Goddess of Good Fortune and Wealth, Lakshmi embodies abundance and prosperity. She is […]

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Dassara: Celebrating Devi’s Grace

Wishing you all a Wonderful Dassara May you and your loved ones Be blessed by Devi’s Grace! M&M & A

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Mahalakshmi Temple, Goa

photos of Maha Mandapam at Mahalakshmi Temple in Goa by Arun Shanbhag

The Mahamandap (Great Hall) at the Mahalakshmi Temple in Bandivade, Goa provides a therapeutic escape from many of Goa busy attractions. It is a perfect place to sit undisturbed and commune with the divine. On this early morning, regular devotees went about their prayers silently and tourist laden buses had not yet arrived. In front […]

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Varaha Mandap at Mamallāpuram

Pallava art Varaha Mandap at Mamallapuram by Arun Shanbhag

Mandapas or Cave shrines of Mamallapuram. The Pallavas (4th – 9th century ce) were the first dynasty to rule over large tracts of present day Tamil Nadu. Their capital at Kanchipuram was at the cross-roads of the North-South trade in spices, gems and silks. Their thriving port at Mamallapuram was the export nexus for trade […]

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Kānchi Kāmākshi

pics from Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham Sri Kamakshi Ambal by Arun Shanbhag

Kanchi is verily the City of Temples. Poems composed in the 2nd century ce refer to a shrine dedicated to the love goddess (Kamakshi – eyes of love). The current Kamakshi temple (Sri Kanchi Kamakshi Peetham Sri Kamakshi Ambal) was built by the Pallavas in the 8th century.

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Uma: Quencher of Thirst

It was a blazing hot summer afternoon in Hampi. As I walked out of the magnificent Vithala Temple, my throat was parched. Even my sweat had dried in this arid North Karnataka summer. The sight of this woman under a bright red umbrella, tending a cooler with drinks was an oasis of bliss to a […]

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Dassara, Dussehra: Celebrating Devi’s Grace

Devi Shanteri at the Ramnathi Devasthan by Arun Shanbhag

Wishing you all a Wonderful Dassara. All year around, We are blessed by Devi’s Grace! M&M & A

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Prarthana: At Harvard Book Store

Prarthana: A Book of Hindu Psalms now on sale at: The Harvard Book Store 1256 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138

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Prarthana: A Book of Hindu Psalms

After five years of research and writing, Prarthana: A Book of Hindu Psalms was released on Ganesh Chaturthi, September 15, 2007. This was my second book. When you see both my books juxtaposed on Amazon, you will nod: yup! only a Gemini could pull this off! I am grateful that I was given this gift […]

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Saraswati, Lakshmi & Ganapati

print of Saraswati, Lakshmi and Ganapati posted by Arun Shanbhag

Growing up, such a print of Saraswati, Lakshmi and Ganapati adorned every home or shop, either as a calendar or a picture frame. I bought this poster from a sidewalk stall in the Fort area in Mumbai. Love the bright colors. Beautifully done. Mahalakshmi Temple, Goa Ganapati and Gauri Puja Ganesh Chaturthi

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Durga Puja – Dussehra

Most compassionate and beautiful, Yet relentless in battle against evil, Devi! Shower us with your grace! M&m amp; A Durga as Mahisasura-mardini, Cave Temples of Badami (6th century). See Durga Stotram (Ode to Durga Devi) from my book Prarthana: A Book of Hindu Psalms Other Durga Devi / Dassara Posts: Dassara: Celebrating Devi’s Grace, 2008 […]

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Rāmnāthi Devasthān, A Konkani Temple

Ramnath Dev at the Ramnathi Devasthan

The Shanteri Kamakshi Ramnath Devasthan (place of God, or Temple) in Ponda, Goa is our family's ancestral temple. Millenia ago, groups of Konkani families settled in extended family-based communities in Goa. Each community had their own spirits, which protected them from evil and satisfied their spiritual curiosity. The spirits and associated deities also received gratitude […]

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Durga Devi – All Powerful Shakti

After my earlier post on the Chicago Balaji Temple, reminded me about the Balaji Temple in Atlanta, GA. I was fortunate to visit the temple in Dec of last year. More than the main deity, “Durga Devi” in the seconday shrine intrigued me. Durga manifests the fertile woman, as the all powerful shakti, full of […]