Thursday, January 31, 2013

Saraswati (Sarasvati) - The Hindu Goddess of Learning: An In depth View

Namaste, Hari Om,

Om Aim Saraswati Namaha.

Who is this elegant and pure site to behold? Why does she have a swan as her vehicle? What does she do in relations to the other forms of God within Hinduism? Where can I learn more?

Behold your quest for knowledge as an inclination of your inward journey. Below information will be fruitful for any spiritual aspirant as the details reflect our personal lives through personifications.

The best way to climb is always the simplest way, meditate on what you have read. read something, dont think about it, but rather close your eyes and look within.

Regarding Saraswati, you can read about her in various scriptures within Hinduism. For example the Srimad Devi Bhagvat talks about her various stories and how she came to be.

An even easier place to read about her is online of course;

I skimmed through wikipedia and its well written so its a good source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saraswati.

http://hinduism.about.com/od/hindugoddesses/p/saraswati.htm this is also good.

There are many puranas that show her stories as well but you can also here some information from my side.

Growing up as a Hindu you were taught to pray and meditate upon Saraswati Mata, it was to do good in school as she is coined as the Goddess of learning. But we associate her with school and learning etc. But she also tames our mind, speech and intellect to become deeper thinkers. Her abilities control our very own thoughts, before a speech, writing a paper or something where I know speech can effect the outcome, I pray and meditate upon her.

Many artists pay homage to her before playing any instrument, even classical dancers like my wife.

She plays a major part in many of the ithihas (or history) of Hindu scriptures.

But when you are trying to tame your mind and speech, Saraswati Mata will help. But heed my great advice, do not approach her with wants or needs, do not ask for things (yes we tend to do this sometimes). God knows the past, present and future, what you may want may not be good for you or in a loving benefit towards your path. We must meditate upon the pure form of the Ishta Dev we are inclined too, but if you dont have one, no worries. You can meditate upon the Brahman (not to be confused with Brahmaa etc.).

Some more important information below;

I found this on yahoo as well regarding the Swan;
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The sacred swan, if offered a mixture of milk and water, is said to be able to drink the milk alone. The swan thus symbolizes discrimination between the good and the bad or the eternal and the transient.

Sometimes she is shown riding a peacock. The peacock represents arrogance and pride over its beauty, and by having a peacock as her mount, the goddess teaches not to be concerned with external appearance and to be wise regarding the eternal truth.

Hamsa, or Swan, is the vehicle of Hindu Goddess Saraswathi. In Hinduism, Goddess Saraswati is the goddess of knowledge, learning and art. Interestingly, a Hindu saint who rises above the thoughts of death and birth and constantly meditates on Brahman is referred as Parama Hamsa.

A famous shloka on Hamsa talks about the symbolism and significance of this majestic bird.

'Oh! Hamsa! Being the auspicious vehicle of Goddess Saraswathi, you carry learning and art upon your shoulders. Give us that discriminating wisdom for which you are famous, such as your proverbial ability to separate the substance of milk from water.'

Swan can glide on water without getting its feathers wet. With the help of Brahman knowledge we can live in the materialistic world without accumulating dusts of materialism.

Swan can also soar up into the sky from the water body. This symbolizes the need to easily rise above earthly ties. A true yogi needs to perfect these two qualities.

But the greatest quality of Swan is its capacity to separate milk from water. With Brahman knowledge, a person is capable of adapting this quality of Swan and it will help him to swim across the ocean of 'Samsara.'

The white color of the swan is also the symbol of excellence. In Hindu mythology, the white colored Hamsa, the vehicle of Goddess Saraswathi, lives in the Manasarovar Lake near the Kailash Mountain. In mythology, the bird is mute and its diet consists of pearls.

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Om Swaraswati Mata Namaha
- SimpleHinduBhai

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Saturday, January 19, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 19, 2013

''We never open our eyes to the truth, the world you see is not what it really is'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Friday, January 18, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 18, 2013

''Time is something that can never be regained in this realm we live in. Meditate and dwell upon your plans, see them coming alive and happening'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Significance Of Mehendi In Hindu Marriages

(From Hindu Press International)

INDIA, December 11, 2012 (boldsky.com ):

In Hindu marriages, several cultures have different customs that vary from state to state. These rituals have been passed on through the ages and still carry forward to the next generation. In Hindu marriages, you can find a few things in common. For example, engagement, mehendi, wedding and reception are ceremonies that are commonly followed in most parts of the country. 

Mehendi is a pre-wedding ceremony that is very popular in the Northern states of the country. However, the trend of applying mehendi on the hands and feet has become a common trend in the East, West and Southern states too.  Earlier, mehendi was applied as nua (coloring fingertips and center of palm) but with the trend of drawing, it has become an art. Mehendi signifies the bond of matrimony. It is considered as a shagun (omen) in Hindu marriages.  Mehendi was originally used only during weddings. But with the growing popularity and importance of mehendi, women have started applying it on special Hindu occasions and festivals like Karva Chauth, Navratri, Rakhi and Diwali.

Original Link: http://www.boldsky.com/yoga-spirituality/faith-mysticism/2012/significance-mehendi-hindu-marriages-031712.html

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Swami Vivekananda Quote

''We are what our thoughts have made us; so take care about what you think. Words are secondary. Thoughts live; they travel far.'' - Swami Vivekananda

Thursday, January 10, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 10, 2012

''Always remember that all pervading love, ask for it, cry for it and love it. For one day you will be merged back with it'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Hinduism Today - Latest 2013 Issue

http://www.hinduismtoday.com/modules/smartsection/category.php?categoryid=13

Dont forget to check out the new Issue!

Hindu American Foundation - http://www.hafsite.org/

Namaste, Hari Om,

Please take a moment to visit HAF (Hindu American Foundation). We have spoken about HAF on this blog before but please note their great support and work through peace and determination. If you can also donate, will be great as well.

I like HAF for many reasons, but the main one is due to their promotion of Pluralism. Pluralism is tolerance and understanding for one and all.

http://www.hafsite.org/

Thank You,

Jai Shri Krishna,
SimpleHinduBhai

SHB Quote Jan 9, 2013

''Why want, wish, need or ask. Know that you are being looked after by a powerful source that knows your best interest'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 08, 2013

''There is always a silent force watching over you'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Ram Swarup Quote (1920-1998), Indian writer and scholar

''India has come to preserve spiritual traditions which many ancient cultures and countries have lost. Today Hinduism represents not only India but the ancient wisdom of humanity. In Hinduism many ancient countries can still rediscover their religious past, their old Gods and their old spiritual traditions.'' -- Ram Swarup (1920-1998), Indian writer and scholar

Sunday, January 6, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 6, 2013

''Repeat your life's goals daily, this way your determination will stand strong against the harsh waters of laziness and temptation'' - SimpleHinduBhai

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We all have weaknesses, for some it can be food, drugs, alcohol, sex, or even a soft heart, giving too much and not caring about yourself.

Stare your weaknesses in the face and say, ''You dont control me''. My goal(s) is ____________. 

Fear is only created from our mind.


Saturday, January 5, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 5, 2013

''Danger is not a choice, fear is a choice. Our thoughts create fear'' - SimpleHinduBhai
 

Dhammapada on Contentment

200. Let us live happily then, though we call nothing our own! We shall be like the bright gods, feeding on happiness!
201. Victory breeds hatred, for the conquered is unhappy. He who has given up both victory and defeat, he, the contented, is happy.
204. Health is the greatest of gifts, contentedness the best riches; trust is the best of relationships, Nirvana the highest happiness.
362. He who controls his hand, he who controls his feet, he who controls his speech, he who is well controlled, he who delights inwardly, who is collected, who is solitary and content, him they call Wise.
Source: http://phong.com/journal/dhammapada-on-contentment/ 

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Dharmapada is a collection of sayings of the Buddha in verse form and one of the most widely read and best known Buddhist scriptures. The original version of the Dhammapada is in the Khuddaka Nikaya, a division of the Pali Canon of Theravada Buddhism.
The Buddhist scholar and commentator Buddhaghosa explains that each saying recorded in the collection was made on a different occasion in response to a unique situation that had arisen in the life of the Buddha and his monastic community. His commentary, the Dhammapada Atthakatha, presents the details of these events and is a rich source of legend for the life and times of the Buddha.

Setting Expectations In Life - Secret To Happiness?

Namaste, Hari Om,

''201. Victory breeds hatred, for the conquered is unhappy. He who has given up both victory and defeat, he, the contented, is happy.'' -Dhammapadda

To often we are let down by some and fall into emotional states such as depression, anger, and even hatred.

Even expectations from food, objects and places can effect our emotions. If our emotions are affected we often lose sight of our true spiritual goals.

Before we allow our minds to fall into this state we need to calibrate or set our expectations in life.

How do you unlock this secret to happiness? How do we set our expectations so that no event can pull us to emotional extremes?

The answer is easy, its found in the Bhagvadgita as mentioned by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar below.

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Be contented with whatever comes to you

Bangalore, March 03, 2012

Q: Guruji, please talk about gratitude. You have said that the more gratitude we have the more grace flows into our lives. How do I become more grateful every day?

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar: First of all drop this more. More devotion, more gratitude, more joy, more happiness, we need to drop this, ‘I want more and more. First you are thinking, ‘I want more money, more joy, more happiness and more pleasure.’ Then you shifted your tendency to wanting more peace, more knowledge, more of this and more of that. As long as you are in the run for more, you are not going to settle. Unless you settle, there is neither peace nor grace. Got it?! So somewhere you should take this whole ‘I want more’ thing and dump it and say ‘okay, that is it! It is said in the Bhagavad Gita, ‘Yadrccha-labha-santusto Dvandvatito Vimatsarah.’ Whatever is coming to you, you should have some level of contentment and with contentment comes gratitude. If you are discontent, how can you be grateful? If you are grumbling, you can’t be grateful, and if you are not grateful, how can there be grace? Do you see what I am saying? It all fits one into another. So now, don’t ask me how can one be more grateful? Just stop complaining! Know that this whole life is like a dream. It is all going to end and everything is going to finish one day. This very awareness will bring a shift in you. ‘This story is going to end someday and the curtains are going to fall’, knowing this suddenly a shift happens from the run to having more to contentment. It will come to that. 

Source: http://wisdomfromsrisriravishankar.blogspot.ch/2012/04/be-contented-with-whatever-comes-to-you.html
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This is the answer to 99% of life's problems. Do not get effected by life's turns and bumps. Having single pointed faith will help you climb mountains. Always remain content.

More info and the source for the above picture at: http://phong.com/journal/dhammapada-on-contentment/


Friday, January 4, 2013

Swami Rama Quote

''When you are searching and seeking, you should be doing it honestly with your full strength—not halfheartedly.'' - Swami Rama

Random Picture - Guess whats in the picture

Can you tell?

SHB Quote Jan 4, 2012

''You  can dwell upon the evil and hatred within people but what good does that do to maintaining your happiness?'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Thursday, January 3, 2013

SHB Quote Jan 3, 2012

''When in doubt meditate and ask the energies that surround you to guide you'' - SimpleHinduBhai

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

108 Names of Lord Ganesh


Namaste, Hari Om,

What are the 108 names of Lord Ganesh?

Click here to find out click below:
http://www.stephen-knapp.com/108_names_of_ganesh.htm


Hindu-blog.com: Frustrations and nervous breakdowns are the end of a self-centered life – Swami Ranganathananda Sayings

A young person must be asked to work hard. Go into the world; achieve something. . .Let the person go out, work, satisfy his or her desires, make achievements the goal of one's life at that stage. 

The same person, after achievement is over, must begin to think of other higher things. Then he or she slowly withdraws one's mind from action and achievement. There is something I have missed, my own true nature. 

Let me try to realize this truth.  How can we find joy in work? By working for oneself? No; it is not possible to find that continuous joy in work through selfish motivations. Frustration and ennui are the end of all selfish motivations. 

Frustrations and nervous breakdowns are the end of a self-centered life.  It is from the human mind itself that both good and evil come. So, a little attention as to how the mind is behaving, in the context of work, is absolutely essential for all people today. 

Otherwise, collective life will become difficult, group life will become difficult; life between husband and wife will become difficult, because both, or either of them, has not looked into the mind at all; they have been looking outside all the time. 
Swami Ranganathananda  

Source: http://www.hindu-blog.com/2013/01/frustrations-and-nervous-breakdowns-are.html

SHB Quote Jan 02, 2013



''Dedicating time to looking within on a daily basis will unlock your inner strength'' - SimpleHinduBhai