2012 Winter-Spring: New Directions

Ritual and Communal Worship | Vedanta Group Worship Service: An Experiment | Ramakrishna’s Realization and Integral Vedanta | Appreciating the Significance of the Opening of the Bhagavad Gita | Two Poems for Mother | Surrender | Mahendra Nath Gupta | Vedantists Meet Again in New Mexico

Ramakrishna’s Realization and Integral Vedanta

by Sister Gayatriprana a. Introduction  This article was inspired by an essay in the summer-fall edition of American Vedantist: “Ramakrishna’s Highest Realization: Original Insights from Swami Siddheshwarananda” by Professor Steven Walker. This swami, a disciple of...

Appreciating the Significance of the Opening of the Bhagavad Gita

Some canonical sacred texts open with a real bang, such as: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (Gospel of John); “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, and the earth was without form and void” (Book of Genesis); or “In the name of God, the Lord of Mercy, the Giver of Mercy!”, which are Koranic verses that are chanted by Moslems every day at their prayers.

Ritual and Communal Worship

So the question becomes, how can Vedantists in the West combine the individual freedom of Hindu spirituality with the sense of community characteristic of Abrahamic and indigenous spirituality? Can we evolve a form of shared ritual that fosters group support and responsibility while preserving and encouraging individual striving for spiritual realization?

Vedanta Group Worship Service: An Experiment

A group of Vedantists from different parts of the United States held a working retreat at Our Lady of Guadalupe Benedictine Monastery in Pecos, New Mexico last October 13-15. One of the topics discussed was the place of group worship and ritual in Vedanta in the West. An experimental worship service was tried in the opening session. Those participating found it meaningful and moving. The text of the service follows.

Vedantists Meet Again in New Mexico

In the Fall 2010 issue of AV, we reported on the meeting of a small group of Vedantists from around the U.S. in Albuquerque, New Mexico for a weekend of sharing and support. Those of us who participated in that meeting voted to meet again in 2011 and to continue to share ideas by e-mail on how to further Vedanta in the West. We did meet again, this time at a Benedictine monastery in Pecos, near Santa Fe, on the weekend of October 13-15. Five new participants joined the group, from Atlanta, Chicago and Albuquerque.

Integral Vedanta Quickie

My interest in Integral Vedanta centers on transformation of consciousness. By that I am referring to the idea that consciousness can appear in a number of modes or states, each setting the “tone”, as it were, for the way we are aware of and perceive things. Furthermore, we can direct which way our consciousness develops these states through a process of self-transformation, or what in India is called yoga.

Pin It on Pinterest