PAN-Galactic Poemy and Updata

Rubber Pants and Psychic Rice...

   Mon, October 22, 2007 - 10:40 AM
Happy Post-Navratri!
Navratri is the nine days of worship devoted to three incarnations of Mother Divine (Jai Ma!); three days each to Saraswati, Goddess of Knowledge and Truth, Laxmi, Goddess of Wealth and Abundance, and Kali, The Destroyer of Darkness, and a tenth day is Durga Puja, for when Maha Kali destroyed the powerful demon Mahishasura.

Mahishasura was the impious king who, through devotion to Shiva, won the power of having one thousand clones form instantly from a single drop of his blood. With this power he embarked on a campaign to kill all the Saints of Heaven and Earth. Maha Kali was born from the combination of all the Saints' and Gods' powers. She is naked, black-skinned, with fangs and a long tongue. She is the all-powerful destroyer of evil. After her nine days of destroying the evil Mahishasura, and her success on the tenth day, she still continues to destroy everything indiscriminately until her husband, Shiva, lays down prostrate in her path and feigns death. Kali steps on his heart and looks down, thinking she killed her own husband, and instantly transforms to her old self, Parvati.

The tenth day, Durga Puja, is also the day Shirdi Sai Baba, the Saint who is grandfather to all, left his physical body.

It is Indian tradition to do puja (worship) on each of the ten days of Navratri. This sometimes takes the form of a fire ceremony called a homa. In the homa, negative energy is burned up while the participants chant mantras devoted to the Devas (Gods).

It was a beautiful blessing to ba part of this group's pujas just north of Santa Cruz. Three of the days were puja'd chanting Sanskrit loudly in a trailer park in Scotts Valley. The rest of the ten days were puja'd at a beautiful cottage in the mountains, surrounded by fog and redwoods. One of the days it was raining, and some members of the group said prayers asking for the rain to stop. Sure enough, right when it was time to light the fire, the rain died down.

The next night refused to stop raining, so we had our ceremony indoors, in a little fireplace.

It is custom in this tradition to put special intentions and negativity into some dry rice and toss it into the fire. As it burns, the intention feeds the Goddess or deity being prayed to. Sitting indoors though, twenty people packed like sardines, leaves precious little throw room, so we sent our intentions into the fire psychically.

Yesterday was the spiritual cream, though. On the last day of Navratri we bathed the statues of the deities with sandalwood oil, milk, and rose water. The group was the biggest ever, and by the end of the homa it was a veritable blanket of rice everywhere around the fire pit.

I am loving Santa Cruz. All of my friends up and down the coast have been in my thoughts and prayers. I hope we are all gaining big consciousness even as we head into the darker part of the year.

With the cold coming it is a good time to watch some good movies (and some bad ones). I recommend "Naked in Ashes", which is about yogis in India. It is really well made, with beautiful footage of India and the Ganges on the last Khumba Mela, which is the Indian yogi's Burning Man that happens every twelve years. Keep your eyes peeled for the yogi pulling a jeep with his crotch!

Deep Love and Praise to All. Namaste.

for photo credit, see:


add a comment
Mon, October 22, 2007 - 11:42 AM
hooray for mother goddess! and you! Hope your travels are well and we can meet again when you return to Portland
Mon, October 22, 2007 - 11:58 AM
Doesn't Khumba Mela happen every three years in four different locations,
Symbolizing the four drops that fell from a holy pitcher that the gods and demons fought over?
Tue, October 23, 2007 - 9:17 AM
You may be right.
I know that the biggest one happens every twelve years.
More than a million people descend on the banks of the Ganges,
All of the yogis come and bathe at the same time together.
I believe the next one is in 2012.
Tue, October 23, 2007 - 9:39 AM
Yes, I believe you are right on that one as well.
You should watch the movie "Shortcut to Nirvana."
It's a journey into that world and is very interesting.
The library here has it, but I don't know about Santa Cruz.