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Please find me on facebook for current musings and happenings. New monthly newletter to be published November 2014. Here are some entries from years gone by ...
June 22, 2012: Dharamsala/Bhagsu, India
This has been one of the most eventful, varied and oddly integrated 1.5 months of my life! Had the deep grace to spend time at the Neem Karoli Baba (Maharaj-ji) ashram in Kainchi, Uttarakhand. What an inspiration the NKB bhakti community is, so full of love and devotion. Great gratitude for the blessings that Maharaj-ji and Siddhi Ma bestow. Upon my return to Dharamsala, premiered an original Odissi Temple Dance to Krishna Das' Hanuman Chalisa. Thank you Saroj-ji for composing this moving prayer. This is by far my most favorite classical prayer dance to share, the symbolic gestures combined with the 40-verse chalisa creating such a subtle yet tangible connection with the noble service, eternal heroism and universal heart of Hanuman-ji. And quite candidly, based on my observations from the audience's (and my inner) response to the dance, it's just so palpable and powerful how the spirit and Divine love of Maharaj-ji pour through every moment of the chalisa through Krishna Das' devotional chanting.
After graduating the latest cadre of Dharamsala Agama Yogis on May 19, we launched directly into a gorgeous 5-day Tantra 1 workshop. It was indeed another incredible group energy, also inspired by love, openess and transformation. Right after, it was the debut of the Dharamsala Film Festival, May 29-31. One year in the making, what a journey! Enthusiastic viewers from 35 different countries and 6 continents gathered at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts to witness some super incredible films exemplifying spirituality and sacred arts.
As if this wasn't enough to integrate, without missing a beat, we held a life-changing Tantra 2 workshop, "team-teaching" in a sense with H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama :-). His Holiness held teachings in the morning and afternoon in his temple and Manu and I continued with a bright-eyed, compassionately charged group in the evenings. Definitely something we all wrote home about :-). This was also the time of the full moon, and Venus transit, and everything was so synchronized and a bit mind-blowing down to the last detail of a double rainbow appearing outside of our window before a nyasa ritual incorporating the mantra of Venus. Another cosmic journey! See my facebook entry from June 6 pasted below.
With barely a day off we launched the second cycle of the one month Agama Yoga intensive. On summer solstice, had the rare treat to meet with the real-life super-heroine Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo, Tibetan Buddhist nun extraordinaire ... thrilling plans for a festival focusing on women's spirituality has been officially conceived, to be birthed during next year's summer solstice. Amazing. Today a tribe of beautiful, effervescent Shaktis have gathered with me to dance our Dakini-Devi energy alive in a 6-day workshop, with a special highlight of creating a sacred dance ritual in honor of H.H. the 17th Karmapa's birthday on June 26.
Anything else? Am in the very last-minute midst of getting up to speed for our second Odissi classical temple dance offering this season. Am supposed to dance 4 items -- an opening prayer to Ganesha, a dynamic rendition of the ego-cutting impact of Kali Ma, a reprise of the devotional dance to the Hanuman Chalisa and finally, Moksha, the dance of surrender and liberation. Overflowing with the "blessings" of a busy life, I bow to existence!!! What a Divine dance this all really is.
June 6, 2012 Facebook posting: Such synchronized phenomenal~phenomena happening in the Himalayas! MOONDAY: launched the Tantra 2 intensive under the peak of the full moon with a sublimely balanced group: 16 Shivas and 16 Shaktis (16, the number of perfection and of Tripura Sundari, the “tantric Aphrodite” and moon Goddess … together, 32 united in complete male-female harmony.) TUESDAY: A magnificent DOUBLE rainbow manifests outside of our window! Then ushered in the transit of Venus with a nyasa ceremony incorporating the mantra of Venus. Beautifully cosmic!!! WEDNESDAY: Height of Venus’ transit further celebrated with a women’s jade egg circle and then the men joining us for a powerful ritual honoring the Divine Feminine. THURSDAY - SATURDAY: mornings and afternoons full of grace with teachings from H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama in his McLeod Ganj temple followed by more Tantra 2 explorations in the evenings with us in Bhagsu. Great gratitude for this Venusian love~light and beaming bountiful blessings!
MAY 6, 2012: Dharamsala, India
The most luminous full moon of the year proved to be an inspiring time for so many. Here in Dharamsala, we had the rare priviledge of witnessing the Kalachakra puja ceremonies at the Dalai Lama's temple in Mcleod Ganj. Incredible invocations abounded and there was even intricate Tibetan mask dance performed by a troupe of monks to charge the sand mandala. This full moon also marked Buddha Purnima, and it was so auspicious to receive blessings directly from H.H. the 17th Karmapa, followed by a fire ceremony at the family temple by our yoga hall under the radiant glory of Ma Chandra. Blessed be the glowing light of Ma!
We have also begun our sixth season of Agama Yoga Dharamsala ... thanks to friends old and new who have already passed by in our first two weeks.