Articles By H H Maa Purnananda Ji

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Cultivate Virtues While Celebrating Auspicious Occasions

By H H Maa Purnananda

“Mantraheenam Kriyaaheenam Bhaktiheenam Sureshwari; Yatpoojitam Mayaa Devi Paripoornam Tadastu Mey.” – (Sree Durga Saptashati – Kshama Prarthna/3)

Holi, preceded by Holaashtak and soon followed by Sree Chaitra Navraatri, to conclude with Sree Ram Navami; the seeker’s Spiritual calendar for the Gregorian month of March is set. March keeps the children busy with either Boards or Final Exams. It keeps the earning members of the society busy with accounts for Year-ending. It keeps the devout busy in various kinds of worship and so on and so forth!

In the busy life of householders, the days and months go past in running from pillar to post to deal with daily challenges for survival; learning, earning, enjoying, to possessing, expanding celebrating, and so on. While being deeply concerned about physical fitness, a little of mental wellness and struggling to enhance intellectual abilities, man completely forgets, and hence completely neglects his Spiritual fitness, wellness and growth. Our Guru-s have prescribed certain specific days throughout the year that are auspicious due to the star-constellations found by Them on those days to be most conducive for Spiritual pursuits and accordingly, the Hindu Almanac is calculated and designed meticulously for years together. In the social fabric of human societies, there are ups and downs, tranquillity and turmoil, grandeur and grief. The faithful and devout prayerfully deals with all situations. Since there are uncertainties in life, to cope up with it he tries to include daily worship in his busy worldly schedule. Soon his worship becomes a habitual routine and remains so till he faces an untoward circumstance.

Such mechanical worship works only to some extent and the actual purpose of worship gets badly defeated when there is such indifference and selfish motive behind daily worship. Knowing very well the mind of man, the Seers introduced daily worship with the specific purpose of initially cleansing the mind, followed by cultivating virtues and ultimately merging it with pure intellect which in due course would culminate into the Spiritual Heart. This whole process of transformation of mind can be successfully executed by a sincere seeker while performing one’s worldly duties and celebrating auspicious occasions with the determination to cultivate virtues.

How else anyway one would cultivate virtues? To drop the lower instincts, to cultivate virtues and to transcend from lower to the Higher, man surely needs wise guidance and constant effort. Continuity in worship helps the seeker to find focus of mind and celebrating auspicious occasions boosts the interest and enhances the ability of the seeker to remain engaged in the thoughts of the Divine. Such a purposeful approach towards worship is a must for the seekers striving for spiritual growth along with worldly achievements and enjoyments. Worship keeps the seeker on the right track even while performing worldly duties.

Each auspicious occasion has an underlying Spiritual significance. While the deities worshipped are symbolic representations of the Supreme, the religious, cultural and social traditions associated with each one of them have been thoughtfully conceptualised and meticulously designed by th wise, keeping in mind the evolution and well-being of individuals, and, the overall harmony and wellfare of the human societies. Therefore, all such auspicious occasions when celebrated sincerely, deligently and with proper understanding, help the individuals to drop the vices and to enhance virtues. While worshipping, it is not unusual that the worshipper would knowingly or unknowingly commit errors of omission and commission. Again, to save the worshipper from the wrath of errors committed thereof, the compassionate Guru-s have incorporated verses seeking forgiveness, towards concluding part of worship.

In the given verse of prayer to be offered at the Holy Feet of Mother Goddess Durga, the devotee seeks forgiveness by confessing about the errors that might have been committed by him. “While worshipping You O! Mother Goddess Sureshwari, in spite of whatever mistakes I would have committed, by missing out on the Sacred Chants of Mantra-s, by non-performance of certain ordained actions or due to lack of devotion; may my soulful prayer be compassionately and completely accepted by You.” Humbly seeking forgiveness itself is a great virtue. May the worshippers be blessed by the Deities on all such auspicious celebrations for cultivating more and more virtues.