Source: Pragyata Mag The secrecy of the tantrik rituals involved in the worship of Tara have prevented her from taking a prominent place in mainstream Hindu imagination. But even a non-tantrik approach to her worship brings phenomenal benefits to the sadhaka. by Svechchachari (स्वेच्छाचारी) In the sampradāyas of eastern India where Tārā worship was most prominent, three temples were considered to be of utmost spiritual importance. First is Mahisi in the state of Bihar, known as Ugra Tārā sthana, second is Tārāpīṭh in Birbhum district of Bengal, and the third temple of importance to the cult of Tārā is in Bangladesh. These three were equated with the three eyes of the Goddess, with Tārāpīṭh being the Divine eye in her forehead. Additionally, it's reputation of bestowing quick success in sa
Source: Pragyata Mag Second in the list of the great Mahavidyas, the tantrik goddess, Tārā, is terrifying in appearance and yet is the one who saves, guides and protects. She ultimately helps her devotees to cross the ocean of duality. by Svechchachari (स्वेच्छाचारी) Second in the list of Mahāvidyāḥ-s, Tārā, holds a special place of reverence among Tantra sadhakas both within the Hindu fold and Vajrayāna Buddhists. To the later group this form of the Goddess has ascended to a position of such ubiquitous authority that to many lay followers Tārā has become synonymous with Tibetan Buddhism. The word Tārā or Tarini is derived from the root Sanskrita syllable “tar” which means to help cross over, as in the case of crossing an ocean, in this case symbolic of the ocean of samsara. Origi
Since time immemorial, we Indians have venerated the cow as our Mother and the milk she gives us as the elixir of life. One of our most beloved Gods, Krishna is a protector of cows. Cattle was considered as wealth in olden times. As per our indigenous medicine system, Ayurveda, the five cow-products or panch gavya, which include cow milk possess near-miraculous healing properties. Cow milk is believed to be the best nutritional supplement and ‘complete food’ provided by nature. It is against this centuries-old background of milk consumption, that the current controversy about milk being harmful to human health has caught the attention of many Indians. If milk is the elixir of life, then how can it be harmful? The answer lies in the type of milk being consumed, or more specifically whether
Gyaneshwar (1271 - 1296) Gyaneshwar was born in 1271 in Alandi, a small village near the Godavari River. His ancestors were from Pethan. His father, Vitthalpant, was unable to handle married life (as he was an ascetic with a holy disposition) and deserted the family for Benaras, where he sought refuge. However, Vitthalpant’s guru, Ramanand Swami found out about his family life. Vitthalpant was sent back home, where three additional children were born to his family. All four children became great spiritual leaders. Both parents passed away by the time Gyaneshwar was 16 years old. Gyaneshwar was a very talented person; he was enlightened, AND he was a yoga master, a spiritual leader, poet, and an intellectual. Gyaneshwar was initiated by his older brother, Nivrittinath. The latter wa
Bhupendranath Sanyal (20 January 1877 - 18 January 1961) Shrimad Bhupendranath Sanyal Mahasaya was born in 1877 in Sadhana Para, a village in the district of Nadia in West Bengal, India. At almost two years old, his mother passed away, so he was left in the care of his maternal uncle, elder sister, and her husband. Nonetheless, he blossomed into a divine young man filled with inner joy and beauty, as he lived in the Brahmin family's spiritual environment. At the age of thirteen in 1890, his spiritual practice began upon his sacred thread ceremony and initiation into the Gayatri mantra by Shri Lahiri Mahasaya. This made him the youngest disciple, which meant that he spent a lot of time in the company of the older disciples, especially Swami Shri Yukteshvar. It was destined that these brot...
Sri Sri Bama Khepa (Bamacharan Chattopadhyay) (1837–1911) Bama Khepa was born to a poor Brahmin family in the village of Atla near the Tarapith temple (Birbhum district) in West Bengal. Sarvananda Chatterjee, his father, and Brahmamoyee Devi or Rajkumari Devi, his mother, were very pious and religious people. His family included a brother and four sisters eventually. A sister was also very religious, earning the name Ksepsi. At birth, his father gave him the name Bamacara. The name Bama Khepa arose because he was seen by Tantrics to be mad, in a divine sense, as in “divinely mad,” a great one. One unique habit that Bama Khepa had was going into neighbors’ houses at night to take their images and or murtis (statues) of their deities, carrying them to a riverbank nearby. He would venerate
Baba Lokenath Brahmachari (31 August 1730 – 2 June 1890) He was born as Lokenath Ghosal in Chaurasi Chakla, Barasat district, West Bengal to Kamaladevi and Ramnarayan Ghosal. Later in life, he was also known as Baba Lokenath. Lokenath means the Lord of Lokas (all the astral worlds) and the people who inhabit Earth. He was the fourth and youngest child. His parents followed the ancient tradition of dedicating one of the children to the sannyasa mode of life, dedicating him to divine service. He lived in Bengal and also in a village, Baradi, in Bangladesh. Baba Lokenath was 11 years old when he went to live with a householder yogī named Guru Bhagwan Ganguly, who lived in the nearby village Kochua. Gurudev could see the divinity within this child, so he took him on as his disciple and initi
Avadhoot Nityananda of Ganeshpuri (Bade Baba) (November/December, 1897 – 8 August 1961) Bhagawan Nityananda was born in Koyilandy (Panthalayani), Kerala, South India in November or December of 1897. He was adopted by a farmer couple, Uniamma Nair and Chathu Nair and given the name Raman. Unfortunately, Uniamma and Chathu had passed on by the time he was six years old. The responsibility for his care was handed over to Ishwar Iyer, a wealthy lawyer who owned several farms which Nityananda's parents had worked on. In childhood, he was given the name Nityananda, which means “always in bliss.” He exhibited the unusual characteristic of being enlightened, in a spiritually-advanced state. When he reached his 20s, he was already wandering as a yogi, venturing into the Himalayas while studying yo
Source: - 'Best Documentaries' YouTube Channel. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7QYOiRsKAyg The term meditation refers to a broad variety of practices that includes techniques designed to promote relaxation, build internal energy or life force (qi, ki, prana, etc.) and develop compassion, love, patience, generosity, and forgiveness. A particularly ambitious form of meditation aims at effortlessly sustained single-pointed concentration meant to enable its practitioner to enjoy an indestructible sense of well-being while engaging in any life activity.