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    Re: Gotra for Converts

    As per what Satay suggested in my sampradaya we use the Guru's name as gotra.
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    Re: Should I totally avoid shaking hands?

    Namaste Orlando ... Have you been able to go here yet? http://www.ashramgita.com/?lang=en
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    Re: Should I totally avoid shaking hands?

    Vannakkam all ... It can be quite disconcerting to go outside of your own upbringing/culture. I have difficulty with hugging personally. It's just too close, in my space. In Mauritius, because of the...
  4. Re: I now undoubtedly accept that Earth is flat (According to Vedas)

    Vannakkam: I'd have to cross the Rockies first. I could join some firefighting team. That would burn off some karma.

    Aum
  5. Re: I now undoubtedly accept that Earth is flat (According to Vedas)

    Vannakkam: I ponder which direction I should sail or walk so that I can fall off.

    Aum
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    Re: Shaivism and onion and garlic

    Vannakkam ... so it boils down to individual choice. Onions, BTW, in terms of tonnage, are India's number 1 ranking crop.

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: Shaivism and onion and garlic

    Aum Sivaya ... Some do, some don't. Depends on the sampradaya and individual. I personally have no problem with either.

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: Panchakshara with or without OM?

    Vannakkam, Yes Aum is the primordial sound. I was just attempting to answer the OP's question, not start a debate. I've heard it done both ways, with and without Aum, although it's rare that you...
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    Re: Panchakshara with or without OM?

    Vannakkam: In my limited understanding, putting 'Aum' in front of a mantra is like giving that mantra praise. So Aum Namasivaya is more like saying, "I praise the mantra namasivaya, whereas...
  10. Re: Should I keep my Lingam stone, or do away with it?

    Vannakkam:

    Firstly, I have to say that with my personal understanding of Siva, He would never get angry. But of course understandings vary. The though of an angry God conjures up non-dharmic...
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    Re: Great Hindu Temples?

    Vannakkan Cedar Tree.

    There are so many, it's hard to pinpoint, without some bias. At the temple I go to regularly, we get people from every state in India, and almost without exception, if asked...
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    Re: Hello from Canada :-)

    Vannakkam, and welcome to this forum. I too am from Canada, Edmonton to be precise. We certainly have a lot of temples to see now. Hope your stay at HDF is fruitful.

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: How can I find my path?

    Vannakkam: Looks like you only have on-line help and scripture/books to go by, given where you live. and the situation.

    Hinduism is first and foremost, a religion of practice, not just a 'book'...
  14. Re: Can We Have Photo of Kali at Home and Office and Worship Her?

    Vannakkam: Kali worship is common, just not in Chennai. There is always a regional effect on our religion, so it varies a lot from place to place. If you were living in Bengal, it would be more...
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    Re: New but not new :)

    Vannakkam" Welcome to these forums. I hope your stay is fruitful.

    Aum namasivaya
  16. Re: Greatly desiring to move towards, and eventually become vegetarian.

    Vannakkam: I will explain the context for you. Perhaps that will help. I was maybe 18 years old at the time, and was in a friendship relationship with a person where I realised that it had to be...
  17. Re: Greatly desiring to move towards, and eventually become vegetarian.

    Vannakkam: This part reminded me of what my Guru told me one time. "If you have to cut a dog's tail off, do you do it an inch at a time, or all at once?"

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: Temple Buddies Website

    Vannakkam: I signed up too. Maybe some of us will host each other some day.

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: karmic debts of spiritual person?

    Vannakkam: I third it, after Believer, and markandeya 108. Not sure where it comes from either, but I do have my suspicions.

    Aum Namasivaya
  20. Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Vannakkam Viraja: Personally, I believe everyone has mystical experiences. It's part of being in a physical body on this planet. What varies is the ability to recognise it as such, and that's from...
  21. Re: A delicate question - how not to offend other (potentially greater) devotees?

    Vannakkam: I have come to the opinion from life experiences that there are some folk that are all about being offended. One can say the most harmless thing, and this personality type gets offended....
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    Re: The Donald

    Vannakkam B: I admit to be feeling fortunate to have watched all this play out from a wee bit of a distance. Although we're close, its not quite the same. One thing in many things that I've noticed...
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    Re: The Donald

    Vannakkam B: In fact I do have a room for rent in my basement. Its hard to find a vegetarian for a vegetarian house. One room out of two is rented currently. When the kids all got moved out, instead...
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    Re: Karma Yoga and Seva

    Vannakkam: Seva is such a joy. To have the opportunity to apply oneself, or use a profession you have in the Service to others is a boon from God, an indirect way of helping yourself get closer.
    ...
  25. Re: Suggested materials for small group study

    Vannakkam: Why would you be the only person responsible if there are 5 of you? Perhaps you can take turns chairing the satsangs. If you're hosting it and doing a puja, perhaps someone else can lead...
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    Re: Ganesh image - Trunk direction

    Vannakkam: It should be no problem to be kept at home. The trunk direction, as far as I know, is just variations in depiction, and has no true significance beyounf that. The famous rock-cut temple...
  27. Re: From a 'dharmic' stand-point, what is 'Unity in Diversity'?

    Vannakkam Viraja

    I agree wholeheartedly with Devotee. I think the phrase 'unity in diversity' expresses the Hindu's love for humanity despite differences. I'm not really sure who coined the...
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    Re: Do Hindu Widows "Date"

    Vannakkam: In my sampradaya, widows can remarry, although age could be a factor here. I think as we age, company is great. So on a personal level, I'd see no problem with it. You could place an ad...
  29. Re: Trivial issue, but unable to find solution

    Vannakkam Anirudh: I'm not sure where you live and that has quite the bearing on this discussion. The more vegetarians in a given aream the easier it is.

    I do know that some folks are incredibly...
  30. Re: What were the gods of the Indus Valley Civilization?

    :

    Indeed! I too have done a lot of reading, trying to keep an open mind, but always arrive at conclusions similar to yours. Besides, now is now, not then. Sadhana is still necessary for the soul....
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    Re: Can I call myself a Hindu?

    Vannakkam:

    Yes of course you can call yourself Hindu. All kinds of western converts and adoptives do with no problems whatsoever. In fact, I see no reason whatsoever why you wouldn't.

    Aum...
  32. Thread: Anger

    by Eastern Mind
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    Re: Anger

    Vannakkam: Here's a link to a short story that I helped write. Not sure if it will be helpful or not, and intended for Hindu teens as an audience.
    ...
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    Re: Anyone been through this (phase) before?

    Vannakkam: Have you been to any temples? If not, I would suggest you explore that. The idea here would be to get out of intellectual stuff, the thinking mind, and more into the spiritual feeling...
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    Re: How to Become a Lord Shiva Devotee

    Vannakkam: I've never seen this as a process of becoming, but rather a process of recognising. Have a clear look at your own ways of thinking, and then do research to find a match. If that match is...
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    Re: Temple visits and now what?

    Vannakkam: If it makes you feel any better, a temple I know had to ban an entire group. The group sponsored a monthly puja for many years, but over time, as the group grew, so did the problems. They...
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    Re: Temple visits and now what?

    Vannakkam C. Smith: The story just seems odd to me now. Odd as in the style of temple. In my visits to 40 or so North American temples, I've never encountered one like you have described. Firstly,...
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    Re: Temple visits and now what?

    Vannakkam: For what its worth, I think you should listen to the swami. More importantly, the other people should. I had to laugh at the 'skin disease' comment He made. My Guru used to say 'colour...
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    Re: What to call myself

    Vannakkam Rose: Personally, I just say, "I'm a Hindu" in a casual sort of way, similar to, "I'm a Canadian." It never seems to be a big deal.
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    Re: Namaskar All

    Vannakkam:

    Welcome to these forums. Quite the contradictory paths you've mentioned. Looking forward to hearing more of our Beloved Pillaiyar!

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: Questions about flowers?

    Vannakkam,

    Personally, I don't give it a second thought. You're just moving bugs around. For larger ones that appear in the shrine room, we keep a jar to catch and release them. Flowers are filled...
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    Re: Hindu Temples across the world

    Vannakkam: I'm not sure exactly what you mean. Most of this is already available in some way, and putting 100 000 + temples into a data base would be nigh impossible. Perhaps you mean outside India...
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    Re: What would be the pillars of Hinduism?

    Vannakkam,

    To me, a pillar means something that would hold the religion up, on it's own, the the rest wasn't there. So Holy men, temples, and scripture would be my 3 pillars.

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: California Text Books

    Vannakkam: The petitioners won, and India will not be replaced by South Asia.

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: Happy Vaikasi Visakam!

    Vannakkam B: Here's a video for you ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjrHkQJCr00 I thought the words just meant Victory to Murugan. Its a common shout at some of the temples I've been to...
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    Re: Happy Vaikasi Visakam!

    Vannakam:

    Vetri Vel Murukannekku!

    Aum Namasivaya
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    Re: Learning about Lord Shiva

    Vannakkam MS: There is nothing that I know of. Within Saivism the 'ashram' concept that you are looking for is practically non-existent. There is a fairly distinct line between the sannyasi path and...
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    Re: ISKCON Question

    Vannakkam MS: Hindus in the west face this circumstance a lot. Only in very large cities are there temples for nearly every sect built by differing linguistic, sectarian and geographic elements. In...
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    Re: Spiritual name

    Vannakkam: I'm still confused too. Are you asking about yourself taking on a new name because of initiation into the holy orders? Or are you asking on behalf of someone else? Or is the swami...
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    Re: Spiritual name

    Vannakkam: Not sure I understand yet, but then I don't get much these days.. Personally, I've never understood the concept of a 'spiritual' name'. I realise some Gurus and organisations do practice...
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    Re: Bhakti yoga + Gyan yoga?

    Vannakkam: Sometimes I have serious doubts about this 4 separate paths idea. My doubts aren't there on a philosophical level, as I don't believe it in that way, and respect the right for any belief...
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