Rajeshwari meets Namadeva Acharya
Really ready for a change or change of scenery. Times were extremely challenging, it would be good for me to get away. I had about a week with no responsibilities. I picked up the Kripalu catalog and started the search. What caught my eye was a full-page photo of my favorite deity, Ganesha. Gazing at the photo, drawn in by it's subtleties, I realized it was promoting a workshop.The offering was entitled Myths & Mantras of Ganesha by Thomas Ashley-Farrand, Namadeva. No idea who he was. The course description was laid out with all the details plus the dates and price. To my surprise, the workshop was the exact dates I could attend. I felt the connection in my body, really strong. It was a knowing, an awareness. It was so clear. I made my decision. I had no experience with mantra nor did I know the presenter, but the synchronicities of my love for Ganesha and the timing were all I needed.
"I felt the connection in my body, really strong. It was a knowing, an awareness. It was so clear. I made my decision."
I remember soon after sharing this with a friend. Her response was filled with excitement. She was familiar with Namadeva's teachings and thought it to be a great fit for me. I made the reservation.
The workshop began on a Sunday evening. I arrived and got settled in and made my way to the first session. It was a fairly small group, maybe 10 participants. I really had no expectations. It was just nice to be away and know that I was going to be immersed in some new teachings.
My most prominent memories of that evening were the presenters gentleness, wisdom and true love of the material. I sat in the front, to the left, on his right side. Towards the end of the evening, we were guided into a special meditation called Ganesha's Loka. I loved it. I could feel the energies inside stirring about and could visualize and feel the Ganesha energy at the base of my spine. We concluded with some mantras. I knew I had landed in the right place at the right time.
That night I had a dream. My dream was similar to the meditation. I was in direct communion with the Ganesha energy. This dream felt different. It felt so real, like I had embodied the teachings already given. My dream showed me that I had a little Ganesha Murthi (statue) planted in the Muladhara Chakra at the base of my spine. The energy was playful and sweet, along with being powerful. It welcomed me. When I woke up, I remembered the dream in detail. Something had manifested. Something that I couldn't really explain. It felt as though there was a message for me or some type of initiation.
"When I woke up, I remembered the dream in detail. Something had manifested. Something that I couldn't really explain. It felt as though there was a message for me or some type of initiation."
I arrived a bit early for the morning session of the workshop. Namadeva was there along with one of his assistants. I think Namadeva had just arrived. He was sitting up front. I introduced myself and sat down by his side. I shared with him that I had something to tell him. The dream I had. He was interested and asked me to share the details. He was so kind and patient, as I knew he had preparations to do before the other attendees arrived. I went ahead and shared the dream in detail with my feelings and interpretation. He smiled and nodded.
There was a brief pause. He looked on the small table that was next to him and asked if I would like to help set up his altar for the day. “Would love to”, I said. He directed me to a small black bag that had all of his sacred items for the altar. I thought he probably needed help preparing as I had taken up some of his time, so didn't think much of it. It did feel like an honor to serve him in that way. He watched me as I open the bag and started to take out the items and place them on the table, one by one. He had many small murtis, maybe an inch in height, that he liked to line up like an army, with the addition of pictures of his gurus. I have to admit I was a little nervous, hoping I was doing everything correctly.
"This was a moment I'll never forget. It felt like all time had stopped. I had no words nor did I know what to do."
I took out each statue, unwrapped it and placed it on the altar. When I unwrapped the small Ganesha Murthi, I was suddenly very still. I sat quietly. This was a moment I'll never forget. It felt like all time had stopped. I had no words nor did I know what to do. I looked up at Namadeva. I said "This is the exact Ganesha that was in my dream." He smiled and said, "Oh really?".
Workshop participants started to come in, The energy shifted, so I put my attention back to what I was doing and finished setting up the altar. There was a feeling of total connection, a bit of a whirlwind in my mind, but at the same time feeling grateful and at peace.
Nothing more was said about my dream during this workshop. It took some time to really assimilate and understand that this was an initiation. I took the experience deep inside and held it close.
(To bring Divine Love into all that we think, feel and act)