2 Mar 2015

Vrindavan Pilgrimage: Day 2 (March 2nd, 2015)


“In reality the dirt outside is nothing compared to the dirt people have inside. The dust in Vrindavan is the dust that purifies the dirt covering your soul. That’s why the Saints say take the dust from Vrindavan .. take the dust from the feet of the devotees of the Lord” – Sri Swami Vishwananda




Krishna’s birth place:

Day 2 of the pilgrimage started with puja early in the morning to Giridhari. Giridhari is Swami’s personal diety that Swami takes when traveling. Today the participants were able to take part in the prayers by singing bhajans, performing arati and receiving darshan of the diety. One can’t ask for a better way to start the day.

In the upcoming blogs we will talk more about Giridhari and the amazing story about how Swami received this special diety of Krishna.


After breakfast and puja we went to Mathura, the birthplace of Lord Krishna. Mathura is located a half hour from Vrindavan, in a very quiet and serene environment.

Lord Kirshna was born in a prison cell in Mathura. The prison cell is a symbol of humility. It shows how the Lord through his humbleness is willing to be born in an environment that most people would look down upon. The same acts of humility can be seen with other great masters such as Jesus Christ, who was born in a stable.

The amazing thing about the temple is that it’s situated along side of a mosque. The two places of worship stand side by side in harmony. How every culture can find a place in India is one of the most beautiful things about this country. The religious tolerance demonstrated in India is unmatched and stands as an example for the rest of the world.

Bhakti Marga Kirtans:

The rest of the day we spent relaxing at the ashram till evening. In the evening we had a very special visit to Shri Radharaman Temple. Unfortunately we entered the temple at the same time it was being closed for evening arati. Instead of leaving we decided to sing some songs before we left. As we started to sing, a large crowd gathered around us and we continued to sing much longer than expected.

As everyone was having a great time Swami pointed to the front and hinted that they were preparing something special. It so happened that rather than doing a normal arati, they brought the murthi to the very front of the temple rather than it being in its normal place further away from the general public.
Swami told us it’s very rare that they bring Him to the front.  After the curtains opened we had darshan of the deity and celebrated Holi in true fashion by getting drenched in colored water and powder.


What stands apart about Swami’s teachings and Bhakti Marga is the ability to generate life and Love into any environment. Kirtan is a great way to express our Love for God and through Kirtan we were able to transport this Love to the rest of the people that were at the temple with the Grace of Swamiji.



Testimony:

“The first day I immediately felt Love here. Since that day it’s getting stronger. Today we went to the place where Krishna was born and it was a very special place. I’m looking forward to the rest of trip … as the leelas of Krishna keep getting revealed day by day.” – Gaurishankardas, Russia 

How can Sri Swami Vishwananda dissolve the ego with His Love?



During the Darshan of Sri Swami Vishwananda which took place on the 22nd February, at Shree Peetha Nilaya, two residents of Shree Peetha Nilaya talked about their experiences with Swamiji. The main issue was about how to see the Love of the Guru in everything He does, in particular when He scolds us. Below, you can read one of these testimonies.

Sri Swami Vishwananda has said several times, “The Love of God is present in your heart always, but what covers it is the dust of arrogance, pride, ego. All these cover this Light of God.” (JL2, p. 42)

On the 22nd February, approximately 500 people came to meet Sri swami Vishwananda at Shree Peetha Nilaya and receive His individual Darshan.
During more than six hours, Sri Swami Vishwananda sat on His chair pouring out  Divine Love in each person individually and also collectively to all present in the Darshan hall.

Only a Self-realised Guru can help one to transcend the arrogance, pride, ego and develop true humility. Throughout this month of February, Swamiji sent us several messages via Twitter reminding us of this wonderful truth:

“Life becomes simple if one cultivates humility, discrimination and friendliness toward all and less will be the ego, pride and arrogance, etc...”

“With the help of the Guru, He makes all easy for the disciple to go on the path smoothly and easy as He takes upon Himself the major part.”

“The great ones realised that by bowing down to the Guru they become humble, meek and the ego is dispelled from their mind and their heart feels bliss.”

“If the Guru scolds you, you should feel great happiness as He considers you to be close to Him and He's well concerned about you and cares for your Realisation.”



Testimony

Some years ago when I decided to give myself to the Guru, took a coconut and brought it to an interview with Guruji (Sri Swami Vishwananda).

While I was walking towards the temple, where the interviews with Guruji were taking place, I met Ruchita on the way and she said, “What are you doing?”

I answered, “I have an interview with Guruji and I'm going to give Him my life.”

She asked, “What about this coconut?”

I said, “You don't know anything! This coconut symbolizes the ego and if you go to a Master you bring Him the coconut to show, 'I'm giving You my ego'. And I want to tell Him, 'I want You to destroy my ego!'"

She looked at me and said, “Why? Destroying your ego? Do you know what you are asking for? I would ask Him, ‘Please, could you dissolve my ego in love?’”

And I thought, “Hmm, yeah, it sounds good!” The effect is the same, but it sounds more smooth, more easy going. When I showed Guruji the coconut, He looked at me and asked, “What is it?” I said, “Guruji, I would like you to dissolve my ego in love.” He took the coconut, accept it and I was thinking, “Cool! I'm going to have an easy life, because all what He's going to do is to love me. He is not destroying anything, so it's going to be smooth, easy going.” I was, actually, wondering how He was going to do that; how could He dissolve the ego in love.

But He accepted, so I thought that He must have His ways. I would like to tell you two stories which are related to this Master's ability of destroying the ego with love.


St. Parthenius of Chios was a great saint in the island of Chios. He had a disciple who was a former sailor.

He was a rough person when he decided to give his life to the Guru, St. Parthenius. At the beginning he was very motivated, but soon the motivation faded away. Everybody of us know that. New broom brooms quite nicely, but more you get into the routine it becomes more and more difficult.

So, he got quite upset when St. Parthenius was giving him advices or when he scolded him. But this student was so short-tempered that he lost control and once slapped St. Parthenius's face. St. Parthenius was already very old at that time so fell unconscious on the floor. After that, out of guilt and shame the disciple left.

When St. Parthenius came to his senses, the first thing he did was to look for the student who had just knocked him down. He went looking for him all over the island of Chios and when he finally found him, he ran away from St. Parthenius. St. Parthenius ran after him saying, “Please stop, please stop! Stay here!”

St. Parthenius fell on his knees begging him, “Please, please, come back to the monastery! Please forgive me! Come back to the monastery with me and stay there!” This incident touched this devotee so much that all his anger and frustration changed into remorse. He went back to the monastery and through the Grace of his teacher, he felt again this love for God and enthusiasm for his path. He served a few days very well and then passed away.

It was obvious St. Parthenius knew that he was going to pass away, because such an insult to the Master doesn't stay without any consequences. But through the grace of his teacher, he was forgiven, he got the love from his teacher and once he passed away he was saved from, let's say, hell and attained the Kingdom of God through the prayers of this saint.


There is also a very nice story in Hinduism, when all the rishis, all the great sages were gathering for a yagna, a sacrificial fire and they were wondering, “Who is worthy to be worshipped by us?”

So, sage Bhrigu said, “I'm going to find out who is worthy of our worship.”

First he went to Brahma Loka. He purposely provoked Brahma, his own father, who immediately became angry. Bhrigu cursed Brahma that he would never be worshipped on Earth. And, in fact, there's only one temple in whole the world for Brahma.

So, the angry sage left and went to Shiva Loka, to Kailash. As Shiva was having some quality time with Parvati, Bhrigu was not welcomed. He got very angry and also cursed Shiva that he would only be worshipped in the form of a Lingam and never in his true aspect. Shiva also accepted the curse.



Afterwards, he went to Vaikunta, to Vishnu Loka. When he arrived there, he saw Mahavishnu laying there on Adhishesh and nobody welcomed this great sage. The sage being very proud of himself and of his achievements thought, “What's going on? I'm here! You should honour me!” In the Hindu tradition when a sage comes to a place, people have to honour him. If you don't even notice him, that's an insult.

So, what did Bhrigu do? He was so furious that he went up to Mahavishnu and kicked His chest with his foot. What was Mahavishnu's reaction? Instead of shouting at him, He said, “Oh, great sage, I'm so sorry! I didn't noticed that you were here! I apologise for not having welcomed you! Oh my God, you had even to kick my hard chest with your soft feet. You probably have hurt yourself. Come here!”

So, He bowed down to the sage saying, “Let me see your foot!” And He started to press the foot of this sage. And Bhrigu, who at first was thinking, “Yeah, that's right! You should apologise to me!” But when he saw the Lord of Lords Himself kneeling in front of him, pressing his feet, giving him love, something changed in Bhrigu's heart. He felt this love which came from God, he regretted for his deeds and started to cry. Finally, he fell at Mahavishnu's Feet.


In these two stories, from two different traditions, we can see how God and the Guru breaks the ego very easily with love.



How many times has Guruji told me something that I didn't want to hear? How many times has He scolded me? How many times has He scolded you? How many times has He told something what you didn't want to hear? You went there with a question, you had already your answer and He was telling you something else, not what you wanted to hear, and suddenly anger arises. He pushes the buttons which He knows quite well where they are.

So, how many times have I nourished this anger, this frustration and have gone into it, and even criticise in my mind His actions, His words? How many times has this happened to you?

Aren't these thoughts and actions, indirectly, a slap in the face of the Guru, who doesn't want anything else but awaken the Love in you? Like the devotee of Parthenius did.

How many times have you felt ignored? How does it feel to be ignored? What does this make inside of you? How often have I then followed this jealousy, which awakes inside, and gossip. We start to judge the others and think, “Why he? Why she, why not me? He didn't even look at me. This person has got so much...”

Has that not happened to all of you or most of you, at least those who know Him and those who long for His Love? And has this not created jealousy and negativity inside of you?

I can talk for myself; it happens over and over again and I'm so sad about it, because somehow I'm kicking all His teachings with my feet. Love is all He is and gives.

When will us realise that everything that He does, everything that He is, everything that happens in our life is for our benefit? When will I stop slapping Him and kicking Him? When will we become this pure Love that He is and that He wants us to be?

I pray that this is going to be very soon and I also pray that by His Grace we all may attain this pure eternal Love for Him and for God and that we can surrender completely at His Lotus Feet. Thus, like this, I see more and more how He dissolves my ego with Love.

- Pramod, Shree Peetha Nilaya.

1 Mar 2015

Vrindavan Pilgrimage: Day 1 (March 1st, 2015)


“Vrindavan, the land of Lord Krishna, where 5ooo years ago He poured His love in everything around Him. This Love has never finished. Throughout the centuries, through the devotion of the people, through the Love of the people they have kept His vibration alive.” – Sri Swami Vishwananda


SCHEDULE:

Day 1 of the pilgrimage is exactly what you can expect from a pilgrimage with Sri Swami Vishwananda: amazing, exciting, scary and at the end Divine. 



The group arrived at the Jiva Institute Ashram after a long flight from Germany. We were welcomed warmly by Babaji and the people that live at the ashram. We had a nice meal and before we could get settled in Swami gave us 30 minutes to get ready to go to our first temple. It wasn't  a lot of time … but enough to throw on some old clothes and start the trip on a high note.


We entered the rickshas waiting for us and we were off to the Banke Bihari Temple. The temple is arguably one of the most famous temples in Vrindavan. On the way Swami made a few comments that you can find below.

Comments from Swamiji (we try our best to say exactly what he told us ... but pardon us for any mistakes we might have made):

"Vrindavan isn’t the way it used to be on the outside anymore .. with all of the buildings, people and traffic; however the old Vrindavan still exists. If one has the eyes to see it they can see the old roads that Krishna walked on, the places he had his “leelas” and it is exactly how it was 5,000 years ago."


The great thing about traveling with a Master is that through His Grace he takes us through the old roads that Krishna would walk on and the places he would perform his leelas, and even if we don’t see it with our eyes, our soul rejoices in getting the Darshan of these places.

We went to Banke Bihari on Ekadasi. It is a very auspicious time because this day is dedicated to Narayan. People come from all over to visit Banke Bihari on this day, and to have the opportunity to venerate Him on such a holy day is a great blessing for everyone on the pilgrimage. 

CONCLUSION:
The visit of the temple was nothing short of amazing. It was wild, people pushing from all sides, colours and water being thrown at everything and everyone. But at the same time completely beautiful because we knew that Swami was protecting us the whole time, and no matter how crazy it got everyone met back together and nobody got lost.


Tomorrow we will be visiting many famous temples, and I’m sure Swami has some exciting “leelas” planned for us well…. 

Chidananda, "live" from Vrindavan 

23 Feb 2015

Shivaratri: A first time experience.

My First Shivaratri, February 17-18, 2015

A few days ago, I had the enormous good fortune of attending Shivaratri at Shree Peetha Nilaya. Visiting here from the USA, and only meeting Swami for the first time a few months ago, everything is pretty new to me. I thought Shivaratri would just be a simple event; it turned out to be an all-night, unforgettable experience.



Now, I have to admit, I've always been kinda scared of the image of Shiva, but then again, all I knew was that he was dark blue, wore snakes around his neck, sat there, unmoving, on an animal skin, and destroyed stuff. A pretty limited understanding, to be sure. Strangely enough, my spiritual name is Gauri (wife to Shiva) and my husband's spiritual name is Shankar (the benevolent aspect of Shiva). So this event had the potential to hold a lot of personal insights, even though my own knowledge about it was embarrassingly little.

Feeling like I was responsible for finding out more about our namesakes, and thanks to the wisdom given by several residents of SPN, I decided to get some basic knowledge of the event, and not wait for Swami to explain everything for me. (Apparently he is known to say things like "...but I told you this last time, so I won't repeat myself..." and I didn't want to miss out on some vital info.) So, I referred to Swami's Just Love 3 book to help me understand what all the fuss was about. Several chapters are devoted to Shivaratri there and Swami explains in detail the meaning and significance of each phase of the celebration.

I learned that Shivaratri is a day devoted to honoring the deity responsible for transformation. Most people think of Shiva as the Destroyer (in the trinity of Brahma/Vishnu/Shiva or Creator/Maintainer/Destroyer), but I learned that there is a secret that he holds: he is not responsible for just an "ending" but is the only one that makes possible a new beginning. He is responsible for transformation, and because of that, he is kind, generous, and always giving.



I also learned that the whole point was to devote the day to remembering and thinking of Shiva and to allow this special process to affect a transformation in ourselves. It was all about surrendering the mind and dissolving the ego.

The event would go throughout the night, until well after the sun came up the next morning, and to get the greatest benefit, we were to remain awake and attend all five offerings to the Shiva Lingam, held at 5am, 6 pm, 9pm, midnight, and 3 am. And if you couldn't, no worries, you would get the benefit according to how many offerings you COULD attend. (Since during my entire visit here, I hadn't been able to stay up past 10, I figured I'd have no chance. But again, a resident reassured me: "Swami will help you," she said. I assumed this meant a constant supply of coffee and doughnuts or something. Little did I know...)

The day began early. Really, really early. 3:30 am for me at least, in order to get ready for the first yagna ceremony at 5:00 am.

Through the day there was an anticipation of what was to come that evening. Beginning at 6 pm, the entire proceedings were interesting and insightful: nearly constant singing Shiva's name and praise; hours of puja, yagna and abhishekam ceremonies; seeing Swami come in and guide the proceedings and lead the singing; eating prasad after every offering; moving in and out of the Big Temple in waves of devotees from around the world; and most importantly, as we offered to the Shiva Lingam at the front of the room, consciously offering our ego and limited mind to Shiva himself, and asking for purification of our limitations.

As the night went on, I felt as if I was getting more and more...well, "flexible" is the only word that comes to mind. I felt less tied to responding to things going on around me in the same way I always had, and was more aware of new options. I was also very conscious of my judgments about other people, and noticed how those judgments actually felt like poison inside me. (Is it a coincidence that Shiva himself drank poison to save the world?) Fortunately, the rhythm of prayers, singing bhajans, and offering it all up to Shiva seemed to have a cleansing effect that went deeper and deeper each time.

The SPN residents and the guests doing seva did a wonderful job. How did all that prasad seem to keep coming throughout the night? How did everything get reset and ready for the next ceremony so quickly? How was everything so clean despite hundreds of people moving throughout the building all night? Behind the scenes, the residents worked, happily serving the Divine in its earthly process, and generously staying in the back of the room so the guests could get the best seats. (I was totally impressed and truly grateful, but you cannot give a compliment to anyone here without them immediately referring it back to Swami's grace.)

When the day had dawned, I had made it. And now that I think of it, it was easy. So that's what they meant about Swami would help me! Naturally and effortlessly the energy flowed through the night, and allowed the best possible outcome. I felt lighter and different. As if something had shifted, but was so deep that there was no evidence on the surface....not yet, at least...but still, something about me felt new.

Shankar and I went to bed at 7:30 AM with morning light streaming in the windows, and an entirely new appreciation of Shiva in our hearts. Thank you Shree Peetha Nilaya, and of course, endless gratitude to our beloved Guruji.

- Gauri
Visiting devotee from the USA

19 Feb 2015

Maha Shivaratri with Sri Swami Vishwananda – offering the mind at the Feet of the Lord



The Celebrations of Maha Shivaratri at Shree Peetha Nilaya took place for 24 hours from dawn of Tuesday, the 17th of February until the dawn of Wednesday, the 18th of February. It included the first prayer performed on Tuesday morning, and the Char Pahar, which are the most important prayers - the four abishekams done during the great night of Lord Shiva. The first pahar started at 18:00 hours and the others followed approximately every three hours at 21:00, 24:00 and 3:00.

The first prayer started with Guru puja, Guru Paduka abishekam, Kalash puja and homa.

Guru Arati
Kalash puja
Offering honey to the yagna
Offering a coconut to the yagna
Arati at the end of the yagna

The main part of the five prayers is an abishekam performed on a special Shiva Lingam, blessed by Mahavatar Babaji and named Mrityum Bageshwar (The Lord which is above death), after one of the famous twelve Jyotir Lingams placed at Maha kaal Temple, in Ujjain, India. (JL 3, p. 200).

Throughout the night, while the abishekam was being performed, bhajans and songs were sung in particular different versions of the mantra OM Namah Shivaya, and praises to Lord Shiva, namely Shrī Shivarāmāshtaka Stotram, Shiva Panchakshara Stotram, Rudra Ashtakam, Chidananda Rupa Shivoham Shivoham. The Sri Rudram and Sri Rudra Laghunyasa were also chanted, and at the end of each pahar everybody has sung the Lingāshtakam.   

Shiva Lingam blessed and named Mrityum Bageshwar by Mahavatar Babaji 
At the end of each abishekam, Sri Swami Vishwananda placed bilva leaves on the top of Shiva Lingam
At the end of each abishekam, everybody had the opportunity to offer a bilva leaf and water to the Shiva Lingam
At the end of each pahar, Prasad was distributed

At the end of the first pahar, Sri Swami Vishwananda reminded us shortly of the meaning of celebrating Shivaratri:

“I wish you all an auspicious Shivaratri. I will not repeat myself like every year. You know what Shiva stands for – the destruction of the pride and the ego. And on this particular day, by His Grace, in the form of Rudra He destroys the mind, the ignorance inside of you, so that your heart can take over and rise to the Feet of Lord Narayana. That's why we stay throughout the night praising His Name chanting OM Namah Shivaya, Shivaya Namah OM. Like this the mind is cleansed,  transformed and becomes an offering to the Feet of the Lord. As the Lord offers Himself completely, in this Shivaratri offer your mind! In the mind there are so many unwanted things. So offer it to Lord Shiva. He destroys all the negativity, so He shall destroy all the pride and ego inside of you. As you are cleaning Him, bathing Him, He is also cleaning you of the inner impurities, the tendency of past lives which act very much on the mind."


"Nandi (the bull, Lord Shiva's vehicle) has chosen the right way. What does he do? He is in front of the Lord Shankara with his mind focused on Him. Like that your mind has also to be focused on the Lord! Your mind has also to be focused on the Feet of the Guru! Then you become like Nandi. Not as an animal. That is past. Finished! That tendency of animal quality is long gone from you. You have gone through all this and you got an human birth. As the shastras say, the human birth is the greatest gift which God has given you. Do you want to waste it? It's your choice. But if God has called you on the spiritual path, due to the good punya from past lives cleanse your mind, cleanse your pride, cleanse you ego. Get rid of these things. Be free from that and He will reveal Himself to you. The Lord is ready to give Himself. But are you ready to give yourself? Don't just say, ‘yes’, ‘yes’. No. The ‘yes’ has to be from deep within your heart, from deep within your soul itself. Then, as He brought you on the spiritual path - due to your punya; like that He will take care of everything for you!"

Shiva Arati

The Shivaratri celebrations ended with a special blessing of Sri Swami Vishwananda: He chanted a prayer in Sanskrit while everybody was bowing down, and at the end everybody received an handful of blessed vibhuti directly from His hands.


His last words of the night to everybody present were:
“May the blessing of Lord Shiva and Parvati be on you always. May your mind be purified! May your heart be purified! May your soul be purified! May you attain the goal of life which is the Feet of the Lord!"

15 Feb 2015

In Divine Love with Sri Swami Vishwananda every day becomes Valentine's day

On the 14th February, throughout the day, Sri Swami Vishwananda showered us all with the sweetness of His Love. Through Twitter He sent Valentine's day greetings and several messages reminding us that our essence is Love and we should always love, at all times.









In the evening, more than 500 people were graced with an individual Darshan of Sri Swami Vishwananda. 


At the beginning of the Darshan, He gave a short talk about the difference between human love and Divine Love (please see below the highlights of this talk and respective Youtube video)


Highlights of Sri Swami Vishwananda talk

“It's nice to spread love. But, it's sad that people do it just for one day. It would be lovely if Valentine's day would be every day. That's what Srimati Radharani and Krishna remind us, no? That there is no time, there is no place to love. Love is eternal. Love is what is deep inside of you. It's not outside of you.”

“In Hinduism we have two different words for love: ‘pyar’ and ‘prem’. ‘Pyar’ is the love which is bound by emotion, the love which you understand with the mind and people long for. Then you have another love inside of you which is called ‘prem’. ‘Prem’ is a sublimification of ‘pyar’. When ‘pyar’ becomes intense, not in the outside, but the inside, it is transformed into ‘prem’. When we address our love to God we never say ‘pyar’, we always say ‘prem’, because it is our soul that loves God. This is the supreme state of Love and that's what we express towards the Divine. When we talk about unconditional Love, this is ‘prem’, because this Love only knows how to give, it's always giving and doesn't expect anything. And this is who you are in reality - ‘prem’, premaswarupa. You are an embodiment of this Divine Love, an embodiment of a parcel of God. You should never forget about that!”

“The most important thing on the spiritual path and in life itself is to realise the deepness of this Love. And once this Love is there, there will be no way back; it's always forward. This is how the saints love God. They didn't expect anything from Him. Today people are celebrating St. Valentine, no? Do you know how was his life? He gave his life for a brother and a sister, not for a couple as people nowadays think. No! For a brother and sister! He gave his life for them. Like that, you see in the life of many saints that love is transformed into sacrifice, love is transformed into bliss, where one forgets about oneself and thinks of the beloved. And this is our eternal relationship with God.”

“Once you realise this Love everything becomes automatic, everything takes its place by itself. Same, when you eat you don't need something extra to digest your food. What happens? The food gets digested by itself, no? Same thing, when Love awakes from deep within your heart there is no technique, there is no mantra for it. It needs only the willingness from your side, the willingness to say, “Yes, I truly want it!” Then the way is traced and everything is guided for that Love to grow more and more, where every day becomes Valentine's day.”


Vishnu Pathi




Yesterday, (Friday, February 13th) was the celebration of Vishnu Pathi. At Shree Peetha Nilaya, an impromptu yagna was conducted by our beloved GuruSri Swami Vishwananda. 









As per tradition, three yagna kunds were offered to simultaneously, accompanied by the chanting of the Sri Suktam, Purusha Sukatam and Vishnu Sahasranam. One yagna was dedicated to the Goddess Lakshmi. The second was to the God of wealth, Kubera. And the third was dedicated to Narayana, the Supreme Brahman.



























11 Feb 2015

Register for Shivaratri at Shree Peetha Nilaya

Register now for Maha Shivaratri with Sri Swami Vishwananda at Shree Peetha Nilaya.

Maha Shivaratri is less than one week away!


Shivaratri, happening this year on Tuesday February 17, is the great night of Lord Shiva, associated with various legends marking that auspicious night. It is associated with the incident when Shiva swallowed the dangerous halahala poison which emerged from the churning of the ocean to save the world.

By his yogic powers, Shiva could arrest the poison in his throat. Due to the effect of the poison his neck turned blue which lead to his name Neela Kantha or The Blue Throated One.

Shivaratri is also the day when Shiva married Parvati.

On the auspicious day, an all-night vigil is held for Lord Shiva, accompanied by a strict fast in dedication to the Lord. All the traditional rituals are performed, including offering of bilva leaves and abhishekam to the Shiva Lingam. In addition kirtan is performed throughout the night, allowing devotes to take part in the “tandav” or “dance of destruction” with the Lord, symbolising the destruction of the Ego.


Shivaratri with Sri Swami Vishwananda at Shree Peetha Nilaya



The day of Shivaratri will be a long and exciting one.

We will start the ceremonies at 5:00 in the morning on the 17th February in the temple and do kalash puja, abhishekam and a small yagna.

In the night from 17th to the 18th February there will be the ceremonies that commence in the evening with 4 abhishekams taking place at 18:00, 21:00, 24:00 hrs on the 17th February and 03:00 in the morning on the 18th February. Throughout the night, devotees will be able to offer water and bilva leaves to the Shiva Lingam.

We expect the final ceremony and celebrations to finish around 05:00 hrs in the morning.


Register now for Shivaratri with Sri Swami Vishwananda at Shree Peetha Nilaya!

We expect many people to attend, so registration is extremely important for us to accomodate our guests properly.

(If you have already registered, you do not need to re-register).

We look forward to seeing you at the ashram celebrating Mahadev with Sri Swami Vishwananda!