Namaste, Divine Brothers and Sisters,
As some of you know, I was recently diagnosed with terminal cancer. I believe that my guru, Sadguru Sant Keshavadas, who reincarnated in 2005, is calling me early. I have very few days left, but my heart is full of gratitude for the many blessings of God and Gurus and the love and support of my wife of nearly 29 years, Satyabhama. I am not afraid to make this transition, though I confess frustration at not being able to finish a number of projects. However, Satyabhama will continue the mission given to us by our gurus and will be giving workshops, recording mantras and persevering in spreading the dharma and mantras. She, too, was initiated to be a guru by Satguru Rama Mata, though not publicly. I have also initiated her to transfer the power given to me to do the work, including giving mantra initiations, so that she will carry on with great strength and love.
The Teacher of Mantra and Pujari courses will continue, and we hope many more people will sign up to become certified and teach others, so that the mantras can never again be hidden from people.
Thank you all for the love and prayers and chanting. You have truly held us up for the last few weeks.
With Gratitude, In Love And Service,
Mantra for Namadeva Acharya
Please chant for Namadeva Acharya to have a smooth and painless transition:
OM NAMO NARAYA-NAYA
Shiva: The Consciousness of the Universe, Part 2
and the Mantras of the Month
My God Is Bigger Than Your GodMantra: Om Rudraya Namaha
Every tradition thinks of its philosophy as the superior one. Whether it is one of the great religions, or one of the Buddhist sects, or one of the various branches of Hinduism, one will always find references to its practices and teachings as being superior to all others.
1.Shaktas say that the Divine Feminine Principle is the be all and end all. They point to Paramashansa Ramakrishna as a supreme example as teaching this idea. Or Paramahansa Yoganada, who also taught the glory and power of the Great Feminine.
2.Those who follow the path of Brahma Rishis will tell you that to be in union with Brahma or Brahman is the highest attainable. They point to Vashista and others. And they are right to do so.
3.Followers of Vishnu point to the Avatars of Vishnu, without whom we might never have made is through to maturity as a species. And those who say this are also correct.
So it should come as no surprise that it is no different with the followers of Shiva. They state that as the pinnacle of consciousness, there can be nothing higher than Shiva. Those who follow Shiva in an intellectual way will tell you that Sadashiva is that principle in waiting which is the source and substance of all. They will tell you that Shakti, The Great Feminine, is part of Shiva and that when he unites with that part of himself, the cosmos is created.Nothing could be superior to this, thus Shiva is supreme.They are, of course, also correct.
Shiva Is Not Mentioned In The Vedas
The only similar being mentioned in the Vedas is Rudra, or he who dries up the sorrows. In another context Rudra is called "the howler" because he knows both the separation from the Divine and the Union with it in the highest sense.
Shiva appears in print much later, in other scriptures such as the Shiva Purana. There, it is written that Shiva has five functions:
-Embodiment of consciousness
-Emancipation or release
Here are some of the great names of Shiva and their attributes as they have appeared over time.
As Rudra, Shiva dwells in mountains where he has an entourage of both saints and goblins. This symbology indicates that wherever there is consciousness dwelling in individuals, the Shiva principle abides Since consciousness exists even in the lower or nether spheres, Shiva honors those who propitiate and venerate the idea of consciousness itself, no matter where they fall in the hierarchy of Good or Evil. Thus the idea of veneration of consciousness is not limited to beings who are good. Thieves and robbers, ghosts and demons are also capable of recognizing and venerating the concept of individual consciousness and its potentialities.
In this attitude of acceptance of consciousness, Shiva first stands apart as embracing all of consciousness, no matter where it may be found. In Tulasidas' version of The Ramanaya, Shiva causes fear and trembling in the wedding party procession of Rama and Sita. For in Shiva's entourage there are ghosts and demons, mad spirits and leering ghastly apparitions all of whom worship Shiva, and all of whom he accepts with complete equanimity.
Pashupati: Master of the Animal World
The small band of peoples who lived in the foothills of the Himalayas needed protection from the fierce animals who roved the area and constantly threatened their existence. Thus, they approached one aspect of total consciousness with the idea of protection via a principle that would be observed as Lord of Animals, which is the meaning of PASHUPATI. It is interesting to observe that the Egyptians of an early epoch are said to have been able to control lions with their mind. The Himalayan dwellers would have called those individuals who controlled the lions, bearers of PASHUPATI and Lords of Animals. Later, this same idea came to include domesticated animals as well.
Mantra: Om Pashupatayea Namaha
Over the centuries, Pashupathi became transformed into Mahadeva: The Great God. It is he who is said to have brought the use of herbs for healing into popular usage from which the science of natural remedies developed.
Mantra: Om Maha Devaya Namaha
This is the masculine and feminine conjoined. Both in inert representation of principle and in active representation of the manifest, the lingam is always interpreted as masculine by Shaivites, even though it is clearly androgynous. But those who worship Shiva in this form have some admirable attributes. They reject the idea of the caste system and the idea of rule by Brahmins. They have arrived at a state free of prejudice when it comes to matters of consciousness.
Mantra: Om Linga Rajaya Namaha
The dance of Shiva and the dissolution of the Universe in preparation for the next cycle, or Mahakalpa. The spiritualizing principle of consciousness which takes the entire universe to a new level of beingness. We also master the elements of creation: earth, water, fire, air and ether.
Mantra: Om Namah Shivaya
Here Shiva is represented as the naked ascetic seeker after the higher realities. He is often shown with eyes closed in meditative pose. The tiger skin upon which he sits shows two things: (1) The animal nature under complete control to the point of annilation. (2) the skin of the Tiger as well as that of deer and sheep's wool neutralize certain earth vibrations which allow the kundalini to more easily rise up the spine.
Shiva is also closely associated with the "third eye of consciousness." The eye of Shiva can reduce any object to ashes by a mere glance with such a mental intention. Of course, that glance can also heal, or stare into mystic realms where all knowledge resides.
Because he has become completely free of all desire, just as the Avatar The Buddha taught, he has become the supreme yogi who knows how to come into communion with the Supreme Spirit.
In The Kurma Purana, Shiva says of himself: "I am the liberator here of yogis from all worldly bondage. I am the cause as well as the effect of worldly existence, though I am bereft of all worldly ties. I alone and the annilator, creator and protector of the Universe. Maya (Divine Illusion) is my potency."
Mantra: Om Raja Yogaye Namaha
The Uncouth (similar to a combination of Greek and Roman Diana and Bacchus). Shiva in this aspect revels in those things which alter the consciousness while still living a separate existence. He drinks wine and is often depicted as drunk. He dances, he engages in the smoking of Ganga (marijuana). This category of worshippers of Shiva are often said to have taken "the perverse path." Yet even takers of Ganga in Northern India sometimes end up renouncing worldly pleasures to pursue the higher states of consciousness. These people, it is said, Shiva utterly seduces for their own good.
The myths say that Shiva engaged in sexual union with Uma (his consort) for a hundred years. And the celestials wanted to have his power available, in the world at large, so they persuaded him to have one drop of his semen land outside the Union with Uma. So powerful was this drop that after a huge drama of passing from place to place, it eventually came into being as Kartikeya, also called Skanda, and Subramanya, chief of the Celestial Army and defeator of the forces of oppression.
Mantra for Skanda: Om Sharavana Bhavaya Namaha
Mahakala: The Lord Of Time
This shows Shiva as ruthless as time itself. At once the past present and future consciousness, the timeless path of birth and death of all beings is relentless. Yet Shiva's innate compassion leaks out into the world as he dispenses favors and boons to sincere seekers after truth, as he did to the ever-living Master, 16 year old Markendaya. From this boon, he was given the name Mrityunjaya, or victor over death.
As the ruler of time, he is also Master of Destiny. Since time is the instrument of apparent destruction, his reputation as destroyer is upheld by this title. One sage wrote that he was even able to alter the course of destiny. Thus he is not time, but its ruler. He is the only Hindu deity ever accorded this accolade.
The Tibetans have their version of Shiva as the Lord of Time in the Kalachakra Entity.
Mantra: Om Ha Ks Ma La Va Ra Yam Swaha
Shankara Or Shambhu: Giver Of Happiness
"Sham" means welfare or happiness, and includes even health. "Kar" means one who brings it. "Bhu" is the earth place, Thus It is how who can bring happiness even on the earth plane. In this capacity he is sometimes described as Ashtosh: One who fulfills wishes instantly. Consider that if our individual consciousness is in union with the greater reality, we can exercise our ability to co-create and fulfill our desires instantly through mere thought.
Story of the Boon of the Demon (turn to ashes anyone he placed his hand upon), the rush of Shiva to Vishnu, Vishnu turned into a woman, seduced the demon, danced, and demon placed hand on his own head.
This emanation of Shiva is the most kind, generous, easily pleased with a little attention and bestows impossible boon.
Mantra: Om Shankaraya Namaha
Om Shambhu Devaya Namaha
Maheshwara: Source Of All Knowledge And Power.
In this aspect, Shiva prodded Brahma to reveal The Vedas and make then available to humanity. He is said here to be the originator of all sound and music through his favorite syllable, "Om"
This name means "best God" again showing the favoritism of the sects that worship this aspect of consciousness.
Mantra: Om Maheshwaraya Namaha
Bhuteshwara: Lord Of Baser Beings
This means God of all things material. Bhut has two meanings. As Bhu it is the earth plane. As Bhuta, it means ghost. So there is a double entendre that implies that he is Lord of the material plane and all realms below it as well, where the demons and ghosts dwell.
The meaning of this is that when we achieve union of the shakti, consciousness and Divine Self at the heart level, we are also in touch with all other dimensions of our beings, event those in the lower realms which we mostly choose to ignore because the experience would be so painful to our ego.
To be continued next month.
We offer a number of pujas and fire ceremonies which may be done on your behalf for various purposes. You will find a list of them here:
If you wish to have a puja performed for you, purchase it online, and one of the priests will contact you to make arrangements with you as to which puja or fire ceremony/yajna you want and when.
Certified Priests and Pujari
Sri Savitri Devi and Maheshwara,Sanatana Dharma Satsang Certified Priests, are available for pujas and fire ceremonies in absentia. Please click here for further details: Pujas in absentia.
Mahavir has been certified by Sanatana Dharma Satsang as a Pujari for 9 years. He is available to do pujas or yajnas in Brooklyn or at your location in the New York City area on a donation basis. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Bharata/Bill Barry, a Certified Priest who lives in Massachusetts, is available for pujas and yajnas in his area. Please contact him at email@example.com
The works of Thomas Ashley-Farrand (Namadeva Acharya) give unprecedented, detailed instruction in how to empower yourself using the techniques of the ancient sages and rishis. He and Satyabhama have been given the mission by their Gurus Sadguru Sant Keshavadas and Guru Rama Mata to bring these teachings to everyone.
To that end, he has written and recorded a number of works, and he travels to North America and the UK to teach workshops. Bi-annually, we lead a Pilgrimage Tour of India's Holy Places, visiting with the Shankaracharayas at Kanchi Math, Guru Mata at Vishwa Shanti Ashram, and doing fire ceremonies in the Himalayas, among the highlights of the trip.
We have founded a religious organization, Sanatana Dharma Satsang, which has opened a Gayatri Temple in Beaverton, Oregon. Plans are in the works to found temples with residential communities in Oregon, New Mexico, and other locations. The link to it is in the right column.
These works are offered in a spirit of service. We sincerely hope that they will further you on your path.
Prem & Shanti,
Satyabhama (Margalo Ashley-Farrand)
Saraswati Publications, LLC
Video Quick LinksIndia Video
Visit with SatGuru Mata at Vishwa Shanti Ashram and Pujas
India Video HD
Ancient Power of Sanskrit Mantra and Ceremony, Volumes I, II & III CD-sets now recorded and available.
Rama & Sita Workshop, Co-Starring Hanuman - 16 CDs.
Ganesha's Abode of Bliss Guided Meditation (CD)
True Stories of Spiritual Power
Dr. Wright's Clean Out Technique - guided pranayama
Piercing the Knots-Granthis CD - A Mantra & Visualization Meditation to release the Kundalini.
Mantra Therapy for Prosperity CD - Help with blocks to prosperity and mantras to bring it in.
Other Mantra Therapy CDs in the series:
Healing Intensives 1,2;
Restoration of Dharma & Peace
Mantra, Path to Spiritual & Material Attainment - a 15-hour workshop on 14 CDs
2010 Schedule of Workshops
Satyabhama will be doing workshops in the following places:
November - Sherman, TX
December - INDIA
January - Austin, TX, Los Angeles, CA
February - Kauaii, HI
March - Chicago, IL; MA: Boston; Keene, NH
April - London, England
May - INDIA Pilgrimage Tour
June - Satguru Rama Mata in OR
2010 information: http://sanskritmantra.com/schedule.shtm
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Cochrane, Alberta, Canada
Los Angeles, CAAtma Jyoti Chanting Group, Contact Jagadamba, Certified Mantra Instructor: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact Saraswati/Mary-Ann Muth, email@example.com
Contact Sara Minnis:
The Ancient Power of Sanskrit Mantra and Ceremony Recordings
The Ancient Power of Sanskrit Mantra and Ceremony, 2nd. Ed., is now being revised to simplify pronunciation.
Volume I and Volume II, 7-CD sets are now for sale at our online store for $65 each
Volume III, 20-CD set, is now for sale. $150