Buddha Purnima in Mt. Shasta

What is Buddha Purnima? Why is this Full Moon special? Buddha Purnima is the most sacred day in the Buddhist calendar and it falls on the full moon day of the lunar month Vesakha, also known as Wesak(that corresponds to the month of April-May). It was on this day that Buddha was born, gained enlightenment and attained Nirvana when he died.

What is special about Mt. Shasta that draws everyone to meditate there? This is what went through my mind when my Guru gave us an opportunity to join him to meditate in Mt. Shasta on Buddha Purnima day. The day was May 17, 2011 when my husband called me around 1:00 pm and asked if we would be able to join our Guru to Mt. Shasta for meditating. I said yes immediately and was asked to look for a place close to the mountain to meditate. Since Google is the immediate place we all look for to find anything, I also was checking there for places to meditate. I was surprised to see so many articles on spiritual significance of Mt. Shasta. Mt. Shasta is a dormant volcano, located at the southern end of the cascades in Siskiyou County, California and at 14,179 feet it is the second highest peak in the Cascades and the fifth highest in California.

Here are some highlights from articles on Mt. Shasta that I came across.
” It is internationally recognized as a sacred energy vortex. It attracts thousands of people year-round for personal and group retreats and workshops, spiritual pilgrimages, vision quests, healing and such. The many indigenous Native Americans that once lived around the mountain have always considered Mount Shasta to be sacred ground. Even today, they continue their sacred ceremonies there.”
” Many (this means a lot, not just a handful) believe that those who survived the destruction of Atlantis made their way to Mount Shasta and built a vast city within its core. The city, Telos, is now inhabited by enlightened Atlanteans. Other groups believe that those who live inside the mountain are survivors of the collapse of Lemuria, a lost continent in the Pacific. Like the Telosians, the Lemurians are thought to dwell within the mountain, although some claim to have encountered them while climbing Mount Shasta. Mount Shasta has powers of its own, beyond its mysterious inhabitants. It is considered as one of the worlds most powerful nexuses of New Age energy.”
” My introduction to the Mountain came in India. I was in Allahabad for the Kumbhamela, where millions come together to seek their gurus and destinies. It was here that one of Paramahansa Yoganandas gurus, Lahiri Mahasia, met the ancient yet youthful Babaji, who initiated him into Kriya Yoga (see: Self Realization Fellowship). Many attend the Kumbhamela hoping for similar fortune. I had wandered away from the heat and dust of the throng, up a cool, tree lined, side street leading into the city and the house where Ram Dass’s guru, Neem Karoli Baba was staying. As I reached the gate of the house a young man dressed in white with a bright smile came up to me and began a conversation, “Really, one doesn’t need to go to India. Everything I have needed to know about connecting to the spirit I learned meditating on a rock on the side of Mount Shasta. Its a place where the veils between the ethers are thinner than elsewhere, and where the Masters can communicate with you more easily. ” Written by Peter, Mt. Shasta.

All these information kindled my spiritual interest more. We went to our Guru’s house and as we were getting ready to start, my Guru picked 2 books to read. One was Bhagavad Gita book written by my Guru and the other was a book on Lord Buddha. Our plan was to drive to Mt. Shasta, meditate and return the same night. Little did we know our drive to Mt. Shasta would take 6 and 1/2 hours. My husband who has never been interested in long distance driving, volunteered to drive. I knew I am in for lot more miracles.
We begin our spiritual journey at 4:00 pm. The forecast was cloudy with occasional rainfall. We could see lot of different cloud formations in the sky and the sun rays were beautifully  showering through these clouds. A beautiful rainbow appeared in the midst of overcast clouds and we could see the full rainbow and its colors so vividly. Though I was looking in the direction of the rainbow, it was my Guru who spotted it. It looked like God was rewarding my Guru with the display of beautiful colors as my Guru brings colors to our lives. The drive was beautiful with green fields, olive plantations and more. As dinner time was approaching we spotted some restaurants and  we took the exit. We had our dinner in a Mexican restaurant and when we enquired there they said it would take 2 more hours to reach Shasta. It was already 9:00 pm. So we decided to stay overnight in Shasta and we were not even worried that we did not have any essentials for the stay.

As we continued our journey towards Mt. Shasta, the sun had set and it was really dark outside. We were wondering why is it so dark, since it is a full moon day. We looked out for the moon and interestingly we could not see the moon nor stars. Here we are traveling for 6 and 1/2 hours to meditate on a full moon day but moon is nowhere to be seen. We were hoping we would be able to see the moon once we arrive at our destination. We were randomly listening to some Tamil movie songs and every song that we listened to was addressing the moon. We call such events as coincidence and from the day we met our Guru we have been having lot of these. We finally reached Shasta city and we stopped at a motel  to check for room availability. Our eyes gazed towards the sky in search of the moon, but still the moon was hiding behind the clouds and we could not see it. We went in search of another place to stay and we spotted Best Western Hotel. We pulled over into the hotel and got out of our car and immediately our Guru was calling out for us to come soon. What a wonderful and unbelievable experience it was. The moon gently raised from the clouds and graced us with Darshan and slowly went back behind the clouds. Moon Deva answered my Guru’s prayers by giving Darshan. We were awestruck and without our Guru we could not have had this unique spiritual experience.

We checked in to a mountain view room. Since it was dark we could not see the mountain. The time was almost 11:30 pm. We were guided into meditation by our Guru in the room. As my Guru was invoking for Divine blessings, he also invoked for the Angels of the mountain to aid us in receiving the blessings from the mountain. Immediately I could feel the rush of energy flowing through my Crown chakra. It was a tremendous downpour of energy but yet very gentle. As my Guru was invoking for our chakras to open up I could see that each of my chakra was opening up like blooming of a beautiful flower. The entire meditation experience was peaceful and blissful. After the meditation my Guru read Chapter 8 from Bhagavad Gita book. Then he read about life of Lord Buddha from the other book. We all have read that Prince Siddhartha (Buddha) was protected from seeing any kind of suffering and was provided with everything while he was growing up. At a point the Prince persuaded his father to let him go outside the palace. The king made sure that his son would not see any kind of suffering on his visit outside the palace. But Prince Siddhartha saw an old man suffering and asked his charioteer what is happening to the old man. God made the charioteer speak the truth and explain that body is perishable. Right at this instance I knew why my Guru picked these two books to read. What a coincidence. In Bhagavad Gita, Lord Krishna is the charioteer and gives the discourse of Gita to Arjuna. In Lord Buddha’s story, God speaks through the charioteer to Prince Siddhartha. We were having experience after experience. It was  a wonderful moment.

We had only 5 hours to sleep since we had to leave early the next day. I woke up at 6:00 in the morning and to my surprise my husband was up already. I think he was all energized by previous day’s meditation. We were eager to see Mt. Shasta from our room but the clouds were hugging the mountain and we could not see the entire mountain. After our breakfast we came back to our room to get ready to checkout the room. We peeked through the window hoping to see the mountain again and there was Mt. Shasta standing majestically clear of all clouds and fully covered with snow. It was just sparkling in sunlight. We admired it with calmness and for an instance I felt like I was looking at Mt. Kailash. I cannot justify with words what it felt like to stand in front of the mountain. I am glad we could get a picture of Mt. Shasta to share with you all.

We left Mt. Shasta filled with wonderful experiences and with extreme gratitude to Divine and my Guru for taking us along this spiritual journey.

- Priya

4 Responses to “Buddha Purnima in Mt. Shasta”

  1. Shankar Says:

    Dear Priya, Very glad to read your blog. It was very inspiring to read your experiences. Thanks for sharing and taking us along on your spiritual journey to Mt. Shasta.

  2. Venugopal Says:

    Dear Priya,

    Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful experience. It was a very good article. I could see the enthusiasm in explaining even minute details like the songs you have listened to while traveling. The article answered few of my questions on what is the significance of full moon day and Mt.Shasta? It certainly was a great spiritual experience with Guru giving the blessings similar to Lord Krishna in Bhagavad-Gita and charioteer in Lord Buddha story.

    Your article further inspired me to read about Mt.Shasta’s spiritual significance and i found the following on internet article.. “Mt.Shasta is a focus for angels, spirit-guides, spaceships, masters from the Light Realm, and the home of the survivors of Ancient Lemuria, which sank under the waves of the Pacific Ocean a little over 12,000 years ago.”. From this i understand the cause of miracles you have experienced was our spiritual master (Guru).

    Thank you for this wonderful tour and pictures of Mt.Shasta.


  3. Sriram Says:

    Hello Priya,
    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful experience. The blog was well written and I got a feeling seeing it for myself. Guru’s explanation of coincidence in Bhagavad Gita and Lord Buddha’s story was really superb. Another interesting thing is last week I watched Mahaan Saibaba serial in Vijay TV and there Saibaba comes as a charioteer to save the life of his devotee.


  4. Sanjai Says:

    Thanks for sharing your experience. As Priya had pointed out about the songs which all had some lyrics involving moon, the book reading and others experiences, I was again reminded about how we can see the truth around us only if we were ready to listen, see and experience it. I never felt so fresh in the morning after a couple of hours of sleep. In fact our return journey took only 4 1/2 hours! That was a record break ;) Thank you Priya!

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