Adventures in Advaita Vedanta, the philosophy and science of spirit. We are one you and I; are you curious why?..


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Full Festival

Hari OM
Story-day is for cultural exploration, puraanas and parables and finding out about leading lights in spiritual philosophy.

This is a busy week; the B'hai faith has two holy days - the 25th and 27th, - there was another Sikh festival on the 24th, which was also the day of Thanksgiving for the United States. Then there is the first Sunday of Advent of Christ tomorrow. Indeed, this part of the year is well-laden with festival days!

It is fair to say that majority festivals took place, originally, only in the Northern hemisphere, as that is where the centres of civilization and organised faith structures developed. Whether of the naturalistic, Pagan-style or the highly intellectual such as Kabbalah and Vedanta, it is not hard to see why most festivals took - and continue to take - place in the winter months. It is difficult to resist the pull of Nature and the run of the year as driven by the seasons. Even though calendars may vary between different cultures, months named differently, years running differently, there is a commonality with regard to season and an understanding of the analogy of destruction, renewal and recovery.

No matter what culture one is from, the drawing in of winter encourages a review of what has been, preparation for the immediate months of withdrawal, and looking forward to improved times as the following seasons spring out again.

This applies at the naturistic level and at the intellectual. The former is easy to understand, for we have the laying-in of produce from this year to see us through the fallowness of winter, and ceremony to encourage the Earth Spirit to be kind to its devotees. For the more intellectually-minded sadhaks, we have for example Christ's 'birthday' to enhearten and brighten our deep winter with the promise of new life, or the ascendence of Gurus and saints (Abdul-baha, Tegh Bahdur, Tapovanam), or dedications to the continuation of sacred places and scriptures (Hannukah, Bhagavad Gita Jayanti). Many are the days ahead which offer doorways to expand one's spirit, whether through living example, learned pursuit, or simple gratitude for the resplendence of life.

There is no reason to become despondent at the onset of winter. Use the quietude it brings to reflect on the many ways of worship, the many joys to be had from each moment and the benefit to be gained from having some 'down time' to prepare for the 'up'!

Greet the seasons, as the Season's Greetings begin to ring.

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Hari OM
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