Sacinandana Swami

A Little Roadside Temple – and the Lamp of Devotion

We have arrived in India and are on our way to Haridwar to enter the merciful waters of Mother Ganga. We will stay in the guesthouse of the Dev Sanskriti University for two days and deliver a workshop as part of their second festival on yoga, culture and spirituality. Then we will continue our pilgrimage to Badrinath.

We are speeding through the night. Our car stops before a little roadside temple. The driver needs a pause! It’s 3 a.m. and still very dark. But the Lord’s temple is open. (more…)

Kaustubha das

Franny and Zooey and Kirtan

Something I read today from J.D. Salinger’s novel “Franny and Zooey”. Zooey is trying to convince his sister Franny that she is taking shelter of the Jesus prayer with the wrong motivation based on her misunderstanding of the character of Jesus. I thought it had some interesting implications regarding how we understand kirtan and mantra chanting.


Kaustubha das

Radhanath Swami Celebrates the Life of Aindra Das With Tears of Gratitude.


As the effulgent sun of Sri Aindra Prabhu’s divine personality has risen in the spiritual world of Goloka Vrindaban, the sun of his physical presence has set in Gokula, the Vrindaban of this world. And we cry in separation. (more…)

Kaustubha das

In Loving Memory of Aindra Das

The first time I visited India was in 1989. My flight arrived at the Delhi Airport at some early hour and I took a precarious taxi ride through the morning fog to the holy town of Vrindavan. Upon arriving, I prostrated in the dust of Vraja and headed straight for the Krishna Balaram Temple. It was shortly after the daily scriptural discourse and the place was nearly empty. As I approached the foot of the alter a musician caught my attention. He was alone, sitting before the shrine of Sri Sri Radha Syamsundar. He appeared austere. It was cold and he was wrapped in a ragged wool shawl. His music was unlike anything I had heard before. The melody was stripped bare. A desolate voice accompanied only by a frail harmonium scale, slow and slightly off beat – crawling, barely dragging along. His song was the cry of a dying man. (more…)

Kaustubha das

Oddisi Dance: Questions for Vrindarani Dasi

Interview by Kaustubha das

Vrindarani Dasi (originally from St. Petersburg) is a 17 year old student at the Venunad Kala Kendra school of Odissi Dance in Vrindavan, India. Recently I had the pleasure of spending some time with her and her family in their beautiful home in Vrindavan. After an evening of kirtan in their small roof-top temple to Radha Govinda, Vrindarani kindly answered some questions about the classical form of Indian dance called Odissi. (more…)

Kaustubha das

Photos of Kumbha Mela

Here’s a link to some nice photos of the current Kumbha Mela posted by Vinod Bangarshettar on Smashing Pics.

Kaustubha das

Sacinandana Swami

Focus on the Essential and Escape the “Tyranny” of 1000 Urgent Things

Dear friends,

The lives of everyone in the global community have been moving faster over the past so many years. Gone are the days of peaceful contemplation. Instead, the average person’s life is filled with small and large projects, most of them unessential. We’re flooded with information, news, conversation, jobs, activities, commitments, duties, relationships, meetings, travel, and we have too much access to the internet. As our lives speed by, the list of things we think we have to do seems to only get longer and create more stress. (more…)

Dhanurdhara Swami

Remembering Her Grace Rasajna Devi Dasi

December 29, 2009
Sri Vrindavana

This morning I got the news that my dear god-sister, Her Grace Rasajna devi dasi, passed away from this world. I will miss her dearly. I can’t remember where I heard the saying, but it goes something like, “One will be remembered more for how one made others feel than for what one has accomplished.” I think of Rasa in this way. It’s not that she didn’t have significant accomplishments, but whatever she accomplished is over-shadowed by the simple fact that there was just nothing bad in her heart. (more…)

Kaustubha das

NAMARUPA Issuse 10 Vol.05

For those still unfamiliar, NAMRUPA is a Internet magazine (with the option for print on demand) featuring well written articles and beautiful photography related to all varieties of Indian thought and culture. Of all the yoga related publications I’ve come across, NAMARUPA stands out as one of the most interesting and authentic. The latest issue (issue 10 volume 5) features a review of Radhanath Swami’s book The Journey Home by Rachael Stark, an article about the Polish humanitarian and Hindu Swami Maurice Frydman by Abdi Assadi and a National Geographic article from December 1905 entitled “The Parsees & The Tower of Silence at Bombay”. (more…)

Dhanurdhara Swami

Seven Ways In Which Hearing Sacred Texts Purifies the Mind

Hearing (sravanam) is the conduit of knowledge. It is thus the first principle in the practice of spiritual life. Without gaining faith in a spiritual goal by first hearing about it from an authoritative source, why would anyone be inspired to take up an arduous path of spiritual practice? And even if one did, without sravanam how would one understand the intricacies of that practice? (more…)

Other recent Posts

Constructing the Exotic /A Review of the Art of Michael Bühler-Rose
Kaustubha das, 09.04.09

An Appeal for the Merciful Sidelong Glance of Sri Radha
Kaustubha das, 08.27.09

A Review of Stephen Phillips’ Yoga, Karma and Rebirth
Matthew Dasti, 08.24.09

Radhanath Swami on Sita’s Banishment
Kaustubha das, 08.18.09

108 Names of Lord Krishna
Kaustubha das, 08.13.09

New Yoga Sutras Translation
Matthew Dasti, 08.05.09

Sri Krishnamacharya’s Anjali-mudra
Kaustubha das, 07.11.09

Book Review: The Journey Home – Autobiography of an American Swami
Kaustubha das, 04.09.09

The Holy Appearance of Sri Caitanya
Kaustubha das, 03.10.09

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