May 4: Retreat on the Meaning of Puja/Traditional Ritual with Pravrajika Gitaprana. 10:30-4:30

Ritual plays an important role in every religious and spiritual tradition. It is a way to link the individual seeker with Divine Reality in a particular setting, using an established ritual structure.
In India, the ritual usually is called ‘puja’ and has been practiced in various forms for millennia. Over this vast amount of time puja, in addition to serving as a focus for devotion, has come to include layers of nuanced philosophy and what might be called ‘yogic technology’ for lack of a better term. Puja in the Hindu tradition centers around the idea that the infinite, all-pervading Divine, the source of all being, can choose to appear in one particular place, and image when invoked/requested by the one who performs the puja and the ones who attend.

There are many kinds of puja. In fact, in the wonderfully eclectic and inclusive Indian spiritual tradition, there are many ways of doing the same puja! In this intensive we will be talking about the puja associated with the Divine Mother. We will talk about the power of mantra and the sound universe, the subtle forms of divinity known as yantra/mandala, the 2 very powerful meditations that are part of the puja, and the order and meaning of the parts of the puja. We won’t be teaching you how to do it yourself as that usually requires formal initiation by a qualified teacher. Please come and join us if you are interested in entering into the world of the Divine Mother and her worship.

Here is a more detailed program for the retreat:
Puja Retreat The Play of Form and Formlessness

Each session to begin with a meditation from the puja 1. Dhyana Mantra 2. Bhuta shuddhi 3. Manasa puja

1st session-The Divine Mother the the multiverse-the setting for puja
Shakti/Shiva
SRK-Brahman and shakti not different
Emanation from subtle to physical
Mantra, Yantra,Murti: vibration from subtle to physical
Sacred Space and Purity-the concept
Creating sacred space
Mudras/sacred hand “language”

2nd session- As above, so below
The idea that god can be present in a special way-prana pratishtha
The connection between subtle world/forces and the body
The goddess invoked in the altar of the body- chakras and nyasa

3rd session- The Queen of the Universe in heart and home
Invoking Her presence
The actual worship of the Mother
Manasa Puja Worship of the Mother in the heart
Calling the Mother into the Image
The Offerings
She returns to the formless

If you wish to attend this retreat as a day visitor please register by sending an email or calling us. Email: info@ridgely.org Phone: 845 687-4574

If you wish to register as an overnight guest please go to ridgely.org and fill out the overnight application.

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