Soul Food served at the Donor Appreciation Luncheon

September 17, 2011 was the day of invitation to participate at the Donor Appreciation Luncheon hosted by the Kauai Hindu Monastery at Palo Alto, California. It was the second visit for me and this time it was special as the entire Darshan2Divinity, D2D family was there to participate. Satguru Bodinatha, spiritual head of Kauai’s Hindu Monastery and a key figure in today’s ongoing Hindu renaissance was present there. He gave a keynote presentation, a video report on the Aadheenam’s activities for the year. There were also a few talks on diverse topics. Bodinatha’s keynote talk was so profound and aptly supplemented with beautiful presentations that it kept me wanting for more. All the other talks by devotees & well wishers who shared their experiences were equally insightful. I knew very well the limitation of my stomach (body). It can only take a certain quantity of food and becomes heavy soon. On the contrary I realized that my mind became lighter listening to the pearls of wisdom and my heart melted by connecting to the experiences shared by the devotees. Though there was sumptuous lunch provided after the talks; the real food for soul was already consumed. Let me take you along as I try to recollect the key experiences.

As Satguru Bodinatha addressed the gathering, he mentioned about an essential quality to succeed in life. Yes it is Practice. If a person wants to dance; he or she cannot dance by just watching others dance. That person has to first learn the art and then put it into practice diligently before becoming an expert. Yes Practice will make a man perfect. Learn any art well and practice it again and again. Soon you will get mastery of it. This could apply to our spiritual evolution, personal growth and professional growth as well. For example we could get mastery of mind by practicing breathing techniques or meditation regularly; we could get mastery of senses by practicing sense control time to time. So what if one gets mastery over anything you might ask? You could then really start giving joy to others; help others; guide others; inspire others and motivate others.  
After the keynote presentation, Bodinatha gave an update on the Iraivan temple progress and summarized the important events that happened at the Kauai Hindu Monastery since last year. It was evocative in my mind about my own journey and association with Kauai Hindu Monastery. It was last year and during a similar occasion; I got a chance to meet Bodinatha. That time I had attended the luncheon with my Guru. When I got a chance to meet with Bodinatha I had expressed my wish to come to Kauai and visit the temple. After a year when I look back; the wish had not only come true but I had got much more than I could have ever imagined at that time. I realized it was time I reflect on the blessings I have received in life from the Divine, the Guru, families and friends. What can I do in return of their generosity? Do I have anything worthy enough to give back in return – I pondered. These pondering led to deep contemplation which in turn humbled me. At that moment, an unshakeable faith dawned on me on the presence of Divine, on the guidance of Guru and on the support of the family and friends. These are my three pillars and they can be built only through faith. I resolved at once to keep the pillars strong and lasting. But how am I going to succeed in it? I don’t have to look any farther than remind my mind about Bodinatha’s Keynote presentation. Yes Practice will make me perfect and I am practicing. How can you practice faith you might ask? What is faith – it is the strong belief in anything; it is the opposite of doubt. How does doubt arise? If we think about the negative aspect repeatedly it leads to doubt. In the same way, if we think about the positives we have got in life and relate it to three pillars mentioned above, then faith develops. Faith is not a onetime act but it is the way of life. We can all practice and get mastery of it. And I believe I don’t have to emphasize on the benefits of developing faith.
- Shankar

4 Responses to “Soul Food served at the Donor Appreciation Luncheon”

  1. Sriram Says:

    Thank you shankar for the wonderful blog. I missed the opportunity to be there for the luncheon but through the blog, am able to see it. And with your explanation, am able to grasp it better.


  2. Venugopal Says:

    Dear Shankar,

    This was a wonderful recap of the Satguru Bodhinatha Velayudha Swami’s visit and lunceon. There were couple of key take aways for me during this presentation, one being the “Practice”, which you had already mentioned. The second point, which is basically i got connected to was, “Raising children”. Being a father or two-year old son, this is something, which has made me aware of the few wrong assumptions i had in raising children.

    Also, this is my first time getting a chance of the glimpse of the Satguru directly and i’m really blessed to get this opportunity. When i look back i can imagine how much i would have missed by not getting this opportunity. I’m really thankful to my Guru and other spiritual friends to give me this opportunity to be in the presence of Satguru. And when there was time to meet Satguru lot of questions were in my mind, but i could only ask for his Spiritual blessings. I assumed may be that is what was the Divine plan.

    Overall it was a soul satisfying experience, which has plenty to contemplate on.

    Thank you to my Guru and other Divine friends for guiding appropriately during this lunceon.


  3. Darshan2Divinity Says:


    You have the ability to write wonderful blogs. Continue writing blogs and inspire others throug your writing. There is a saying, when you meet your teacher, your qualities blossom. After singing, its your writing abilities that are blossoming…

    Good Luck!
    Looking forward for more Soul inspiring blogs like this.


  4. Sanjai Says:

    Dear Shankar,
    This is yet an another fan of your blog writing ..
    Though Satguru’s presentation was fast it captured all of us. It is interesting to note after all these days the one key message which rings in our ears is “practice”.
    Beautiful was Satguru’s message. Satguru’s approach has been very very simple. He explains certain basic concepts and provides us reasoning on various practices. Satguru showed us how well advanced were our practices in India. We have been following them without understanding. Though the practices always makes sense, we were not tuned to it. Satguru is lighting us the truth.
    Satguru’s light on the mind’s aspect was very good as well – Instinct, Intellect and Intuition. From Instinct to Intellect to Intuition is our experience to learn and enjoy.
    Good practices will take us to mind with intuition. Perfection blossoms.
    I enjoyed each and every moment with Satguru and our group. Our group was luck to receive him when he entered the hall. We were also there when he was leaving for his room after the lunch.
    During lunch, our Guru asked asked us a question. This was a very simple one. Each presented their thought on it. But when our Guru explained the answer with clarity, it was a blessing.
    Great Gurus are all seen to speak the same truth with immense clarity.

    Thank you Shankar and friends.

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