Our meetings will be at 7:30 PM on Tuesdays in the Spring Semester 2013 - same location (Fishbowl Chapel)
Navratri is a combination of two words. 'Nav' means nine while 'ratri' means night. Therefore, this celebration is literally translated as 'nine nights'. The celebrations begin on the first day of the month of Ashvin according to the Hindu calendar. They culminate in the festival of Dassera, on the tenth dayof the month.The festival of Dassera is celebrated to worship the goddess Durga. She is the embodiment of Devi, or the supreme goddess. The form of the goddess Durga is said to symbolise creative energy and the feminine body. This form of the goddess has nine aspects. Navratri therefore is dedicated to the worship of these aspects. Each form or aspect of the goddess has its own day dedicated to it.The celebrations are devoted to the worshipof the Eternal mother, which has its origins in the Vedas. Durga is also considered to be a combination of the Trinity of goddesses. They are Saraswati, Parvati, and Lakshmi. During Navratri, these three main goddesses are worshipped as well. The central theme of Navratri though is the triumph of good over evil. HSO along with Hindu Yuva celebrated Navratri on October 14th in which members of both organizations participated in garba and dandiya processions. Pictures will be posted soon!
Thanks everyone for coming out to our Malibu Temple Trip this past Sunday. The trip was a success, with 26 people attending. We drove up to the temple, prayed, ate at the Temple cafeteria, and a few of us stopped by the scenic Pepperdine University on the way back to look at the views. Pictures of the trip will be up as soon as we receive them. Let us know what you thought of the trip and what other kinds of events/temples you would like to see in the future!
After offering Aarthi and our prayers to the Divine, our content chair Harsh Vathsangam began the discussion about Swami Vivekananda. We were each given a copy of Vivekanada's speech he gave at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1893 during the The Chicago World's Fair. Vivekananda's speech emphasized the themes of unversality and religious tolerance. Please share your thoughts on Swami Vivekananda and his World's Fair speech!
A quick announcement: Our email has been experiencing a few issues and, so we have now relocated to firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to contact us through email or through the contact form on the "Contact Us" tab. If you are not receiving weekly emails from us, just send us an email or fill out the contact form and we'll put you on our list.
We spent our discussion today discussing the meaning of prayer in our lives or if it even has a special meaning to us. We discussed the purpose of prayer and why it is such an integral part of Hinduism. Accordingly, we chose some common slokas and recited them out loud as a group, hearing our voices reverberate in a chorus through the Fishbowl Chapel. What does prayer mean to you?
Our meeting on Tuesday, September 4th, began with HSO President Pavitra Krishnamani initiating Aarthi, which all members participated in. After we offered our prayers, Content Coordinator Harsh Vathsangam began the discussion on the topic of the Upanishads, a collection of ancient philosophical texts that developed over time from the Vedas. We learned that one of the core teachings of the Upanishads deals with the direct experience of the center of consciousness, the absolute reality known as Brahman. Religious Director Swami Atmavidyanada went into greater detail describing the six types of Upanishads as well as their significance. We went on to describe our meanings of consciousness and how we may imagine it and moksha - or if such things can even be imagined. For those who could not make it to Monday's meeting, we would love to hear your questions, comments, and/or opinions regarding the Upanishads and consciousness. Thank you! - HSO