September 1, 2011

Seeking Divinity

The main thing I miss at abroad locations, is going to a temple. And US is no different.
I re-located to Cincinnati, Ohio close to 2 months ago, started visiting the client office, moved to a new apartment, set up the home, purchased a car & began work in full-swing.

But some where all this turned out very mechanical with the above things just been completed as tasks on a list. There is always something amiss when I am away from God. I did bring few pictures of Gods from India, a diya & my prayer books. And yet, the same feeling never sinks in like you are at India.

Ok, now that everything else was set at work & home, the search for a temple in the vicinity began. As expected, I could not locate one at walking distance from my home.

I am a staunch believer in God & like to visit his shrine every now & then. It need not be a temple too. It only has to be a place with His presence. It keeps me at peace. Even when we were growing up in the Middle East, my parents would always take my brother & me to the temple, irrespective of whether it was an occasion or not. Now, this doesn't mean that you are different if you don't visit a temple. There are individuals who prefer to pray at heart & believe in God in the same way as any one else. It's what you believe in & how you prefer to follow it.

The first thing I lost touch with, after moving here, was festivals. In the last minute arrangements before traveling, I conveniently forgot to pack a spiritual calendar. You do get all the information on the internet but somewhere a new lifestyle can initially put you off track till you take charge.

Few days back, it was during a chat session with my friend, HK, that I realized, the next day was Krishna Janmashtami or Gokulashtami (the day Lord Krishna was born). Now, usually I rely on my mom for such information. She knows how her daughter efficiently manages the household (pun intended :)) & thus mom never refrains from informing me the important dates & functions to watch out for. On this occasion, however, mom probably missed out on telling me the actual date. 

I immediately Googled & found a Hindu temple at a half hour's distance from home. The day was charted out with M, that we are visiting the temple for the puja. It was an amazing experience. The location of the temple was just beautiful. The festivals are not celebrated entirely the same way as we do back home but nevertheless, it feels great ! 

Lastly, posting a couple of pics of the prayer spot set up at home. 

This spot is still work in progress. :)

Speaking of which, Ganesh Chaturthi is one festival I always look forward to while at Mumbai & this year, it will be fondly remembered... Ganapati Bappa Morya....

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