I awoke to the sound of young coyotes howling in the morning. To me it was a good sign that wildlife was comfortable in the suburbs of such a sprawling place as Mississauga. David, Vivasvan, and Adisvar from Michigan, and I spent the night at the home of an outstanding couple, Dharma and Manasi. From there we went to meet Fernando and Victor for an additional stretch on the Bruce Trail. We anticipated a mere eight kilometres, which under normal circumstances, could take three hours on a usua
I introduced our guests, an extraordinary couple from Silicon Valley, California—Vaiseshika and Nirakula—as "The Unsinkables." This dynamic duo are stalwarts of bhakti yoga, who come to visit Toronto every six months to enliven the community. The emphasis of this four-day blessing was on chanting, billed as "Make Japa Great Again."
Vaiseshika had the interested recruits sit in a circle and, with chanting beads in hand, fuelled the group to a fresh approach. Every so often he would cease the
There was a major birthday party for Ashu at our temple, with kirtan entertainment in Govinda's. Special guest musicians were Amal Krishna and Hari Bhakti who were belting it out with voice and harmonium.
Ashu asked me to say a few things using the microphone, and so I had the chance to see face-on who had attended. "I can see that the people we have here are of the ’80s and ’90s crowd." They agreed with me. It seems that congregations go in waves not all at once, but transitionally. Pa
The other day in Saskatoon, Chief Pratt of the First Nations, was on the stage giving his speech at the Festival of India, and said, "They used to call us Indians." People laughed. He then went on to explain that Columbus set sail from Europe in search of the bountiful land of India and then reached the shores of the New World thinking that perhaps they had accomplished their goal, or at least came upon a place of wonder —North America. It was nice to have the Chief present.
When I arriv
The North Saskatchewan River is one of those majestic streams of water that connects with communities in the Canadian prairies of which this fine city is one. Our Chariot Fest for this place runs partially along this River, culminating at Meewasin Valley Park.
The chief of police joined us as he did last year. Chief Cooper is one of those cool officers, very popular with the kids. And Vice-Chief David Pratt, representing the Seventy-four Nations (tribes) of the province got on the stage to w
It is a familiar location for me, as Ananda and I stepped carefully beside the pond in John Avant Park with its dry and sometimes slippery edge. It's a man-made body of water, dug to address excess storm-water. A great job was done with the landscaping, and tree and bush plant management around the pond and the adjoining creek. Very pretty! https://www.instagram.com/p/B0WsnxOgm_a/?igshid=9xx3w5fsj5l3
A question came to mind, which I consider natural, as a visitor to this province and city
Gaura and Shivani hosted seventy-five people in their home for chanting, drumming, catching some wisdom, and eating. It was Ananda and I who were the presenters, except for the Prasadam (blessed food) that we were not responsible for. We were a bit cramped in a small basement. I talked about the soul’s evolution and Near Death Experience (NDE)—based on the Gita's knowledge, of course. But it was one young boy, age eight, who suggested I talk about global warming.
My response: "We don't h
There is this guy named the "Gentle Bear Man" who operates a bear sanctuary in north-western Ontario. I went to visit him in 2012 when I walked in the area. The wild bears in the region have come to know him, love him and trust him. During that trip, he brought me into his Sanctuary with eleven bears all around us. And because they love him, they trusted me to be in their midst. I fed a female black bear a pastry from my hand. I could feel her spirit. She was not defensive, only a litt
I trekked along Memorial Avenue in Thunder Bay, in a fresh moment of wind and with sunshine doing its round once again. Destination was the Sanskrit Bazaar / Temple, and there our party conducted a mini, morning program with Reflections on Canto 1 from the book Bhagavatam. The main message we absorbed from those few moments was, "Whatever you learn share it—share it because you will remember it, retain it and you also will benefit the recipient."
Our route to drive, once in the van, was Hi
I guess Darrel has left to continue his long walk to Nova Scotia. Apparently he did not make his presence known at the Festival of Colours, held at the same location at Marine Park, where on the previous day the Festival of India stood out in its glory.
What a day it was! So many happy people. So many people were chanting mantras. A big help in this regard was Malini Taneja, the dancer/singer extraordinaire who led most of the colour throws in the air. She's young, pretty and talente
In Thunder Bay, the day usually starts with the sound of a seagull flitting by one's bedroom. It's the big lake nearby, Lake Superior, which attracts these entertaining birds who are aerobatic by nature. I imagine the fish from the fresh water keeps them in the area.
Ananda, Gaura and I left our apartment, a condominium within the re-defined space of an old school, The Queen Elizabeth. With a solid foundation, strong walls and high ceilings, our group of six men felt safe, had good res
As has been observed many times before, when I move about in devotional attire, I get noticed. After a swim in Lake Boulevard, I had changed into a dhoti and kurta, when a cyclist slowed down and asked, "Hare Krishna?"
"Yeah, and I guess you'll be there for the Festival of India tomorrow?"
"Yes, sir!" he responded, and then picked up speed, off to his own destination.
At the harbourfront, the boys and I, in the midst of air-gliding seagulls, had just completed a kirtan/chanting sess
Our coordinator for this Vedic Mace traveling tour, is a competent person, a doctor from Thunder Bay by the name of Prem Kishor. ‘Prem’ means love for the Divine. It is Prem who demonstrates an actual caring for people, by organizing these events in venues throughout the towns in northern Ontario, where few folks get to the heart of the culture of India, and the heart of the soul.
Last year, we were here when a modest turnout of local people came. "This year you doubled!” said one woman wh
Gaura and I took to the Great Northern Road as a head start to Terrace Bay. So, on foot we tread with traffic roaring by our side until our van pulled up. We spotted this perfect display of reversed karma: a sculpture of a moose on its rear legs, dangling an adversary, a hunter, suspended in the air from its front hoof.
We hopped into the van and joined our boys’ team to go westward through the prettiest scenery of nature you can imagine. The boreal forest is very special, covering 60%
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