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Digital Gifts – Videos and more

February 25th, 2017

From time to time, I have forwarded nice image collections or links to videos and more via e-mail to a “friends’ list”. I call them “digital gifts”. I receive them from friends or find them on the web.

I normally do not publish them in the blog – I don’t want to get copyright issues with pictures and many of the “gifts” are just a nice pastime.

Here you find the link collection which I gathered over the last months – I don’t add the pictures and don’t  frame the videos here…

Nice commercials – in German, but you will understand:

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  • Photo Dharma : Around 10,000 photographs of Buddhist archeological sites, pilgrimage centres, and temples in SE Asia, as well as Videos, Maps, Posters, etc.
  • Holybooks.com : free PDFs of many sacred and spiritual texts from many traditions, also Theosophy
  • Dharma Vidya : Lots of pictures of Indian deities
  • Hindu Devotional Power : pictures and texts, stories and more
  • Mygodpictures.com : pictures of Gods of many cultures

Where the Hell is Matt? (2012):


Extract from the video (c. Matt Harding)

Pisces – The Great Fish and the Seed of the Universe

February 22nd, 2017

Pisces represents the dissolution of an old state followed by a gap and the beginning of a new cycle. The stories of smaller and bigger deluges correspond to the monthly cycles of new moon and full moon or the ending and beginning of the solar year. The Wisdom Teachings explain that the Earth, the solar system and also the universe go through such cycles. There are periodical dissolutions called Pralayas. The seeds of the previous creation are preserved through the “flood” in a vehicle symbolised by a ship, and the Lord in the form of a Great Fish takes the seeds to the new creation.

I visualised the cycle by a circle with a central point, symbol of the Sun. At the same time the central point is also like a Sun from where a stream comes forth. The water of the flood is partly submerging the circle. To this transition point the Great Fish has drawn the boat with the Manus, the seeds of the new creation. The depiction of the Manus was created based on an old Mahabharata illustration of Ramanarayanadatta Astri.

See more pictures on the site with my paintings. If you want to print the image, you can download the file in medium and high resolution format.
The different zodiacal signs are clustered in groups – you can see here all my Pisces paintings.

A Mountain Trip for a Wedding Jubilee

February 22nd, 2017

Last Monday, my wife and I made an excursion to Mount Chäserrugg. It is a flat mountain of about 2260 meters in the East of Switzerland. It was at a  Sai Baba seminar in 1984, which took place at the foot of this mountain, where the matchmaking started (without my knowing) which led to our marriage in February 1988. (Read in this blogpost the matchmaking story and the later continuation.) So my wife proposed this trip to the Chäserrugg to celebrate our 29th wedding anniversary.

The weather report two days before announced nice weather – but the weather conditions can quickly change in the mountains. When we went up, first with a cliff railway and then with a rope-way, the hilltop was sunk in clouds chased by ice-cold winds. The promo said you can have a panoramic view over 6 countries but we hardly could see a few meters.

We decided to first eat lunch in the newly erected summit restaurant. It was designed by the famous architects Herzog & de Meuron and has a fantastic wooden structure integrating the station into the mountain landscape. For short moments gorgeous mountain views showed up between the clouds, and when we left the restaurant the view was much better. We wanted to do a promenade along a maintained ridge-way. A breathtaking view with changing cloud formations. In the valleys, you could see the Rhine River and the Walensee were the coming spring had melted all the snow while here at the mountain top strong winds blew snow-clouds over the ways. And on the steep pistes skiers were rushing downhill.

Later, we went to the intermediate station at about 1330 meters and did a promenade there. Although there was still a lot of snow around it was much warmer and no wind. We walked a while on the “Klangweg” (Way of Sounds) with some installations for making sounds – with tubes or with cow bells.

Back in the valley, we tried to find the place in Wildhaus where the seminar had taken place (I had been there at a later seminar in 1985) but could not clearly identify it. But on the highway on the way back home we exchanged about the events which still have an impact on our present lives.

Visit to Kuruvapur Island, Abode of Sripada Srivallabha

January 22nd, 2017

It had been a short night when the bus started to Visakhapatnam airport at 5:30 am on Monday morning 16 January. Some group members directly began their journey home. We were nine persons who, before returning home early the next morning, wanted to make a trip to Kuruvapur, an island in the Krishna River where Sripada Srivallabha had passed the second half of his life, from about 1336 until his disappearance in 1350. We took the first morning flight to Hyderabad.

At the exit of Hyderabad airport my friends Sridhar and Lakshmi with her son Pavan waited already for us. It was the first time I met Lakshmi although we had a lot of e-mail contacts in the past – it was she who brought me into contact with Sripada and proposed the translation of his biography to me. And there was Mr. Subramania Kumar, from a spiritual society related to Lord Dattatreya who would accompany us, for he was very familiar with the place where we were going.

With two taxis and Sridhar’s car we first went to his home to leave there our luggage. Sridhar and his wife offered us tea, coffee and some snacks and then we started – all together15 persons. It was a bit later than I had calculated. And the tour turned out to be long and went partly via bumpy roads. But the time flew quickly by – during the whole journey I had a lively conversation with Lakshmi.


Several mountains were like huge piles of giant pebbles


Sripada statue at the entrance of the Ashram

It was already past 3 pm when we arrived at Panchadev Pahad, a small settlement on the board of the Krishna River. We received a warm welcome at the “Sripada Chaya Ashramam”, where they offered us some food and a few devotional articles. In a huge hall with a shrine a fire ritual was going on. Around the hall there were beautiful new statues of incarnations of Lord Dattatreya and other saints. I urged the group to continue towards Kuruvapur: “We want to visit the island, the time till sunset is running short.”


Shrine inside the ashram hall


Statue of Sripada outside the ashram hall


Lakshmi with her son

Finally we arrived at the river. To my great surprise it was very large – the pictures my friend Robert had taken last year in January showed a shallow stream which they could cross by feet. We now had to take boats. There was a number of huge round coracles. We took two coracles (on the way back the whole group sat in a single coracle!). The ferryman skilfully manoeuvred the boat over the water surface which seemed to be without flow. For a while a water serpent was swimming beside us. The boats had to go through a passage between small uninhabited islands.

For me it was a solemn moment when we entered the island of Kuruvapur. We passed by a small shrine under a huge banyan tree. I heard that the was there already at the times of Sripada, in the 14th century. Through a small gopuram (temple tower) we went into the inner courtyard of the temple. The women were allowed to enter in panjabis; the men had to change the western clothes to dothis, the traditional Indian dress worn by men. Then we were allowed into the innermost part of the temple, the place where Sripada had lived and meditated. All of us felt a strong spiritual presence. Some later described it as a permeating, warm and loving energy. It was very pleasant and stronger than what I had experienced at other places. We sat down for meditation. I quickly was absorbed in profound silence – the outside sounds came like from a great distance.


Small shrine under the old banyan tree


Gopuram, entrance of the temple


Putting on dothis


The statue of Sripada at the Sanctum


Flags on the temple top


Audumbara tree in the centre of the inner courtyard

Filled with this sublime experience, we returned to the river. I would have liked to stay a bit longer but the golden light of the evening sun was already over the waters while we were gliding back to the other riverside. Again some group photos, then back into the taxis and a short stop at the ashram.


Together with Sridhar in the coracle


Landing at Panchadev Pahad

The sun was already setting when the journey back started. 3.5 hours later we arrived at Sridhar’s home in Hyderabad. With warm hospitality, he and his wife offered us a dinner. Around midnight he drove us to the airport. When I finally sat in the plane, I was very tired but filled with a rich treasure of profound experiences. I felt very grateful.

Aquarius – The Aquarian Pot and the Eternal Dancer

January 21st, 2017

The Wisdom Teachings describe the process of manifestation as a tunnel, where on one side there is the creation and on the other side there is a seeming vacuum, the potential space. This is illustrated by the symbol of the Aquarian pot. It has two openings: from one side you see a continuous downpour of water, but on the other side there is no water coming in. It seems that it is coming from out of nowhere and that some magic is giving birth to the creation.

The waves of the ocean of space are coming from that source in rhythmic, dancing-like movements. The Lord of this vibrating principle in creation is Shiva as the eternal dancer called Nataraja. If he concludes his dance, the creation comes to an end.

For the image, I took the photo of a statue of the dancing Shiva in my study room and created an Aquarian pot with streams of water pouring down. The pot is glowing in violet and blue – the colours of Aquarius. The surrounding arc of flames stands for the sphere into which the manifestation is happening. Shiva is dancing in the flow of waters which unfolds into the spectral colours. He is surrounded by serpent-like forms on a starry background symbolising the vibrations of space. The rhythmic pulsation of space is represented by his little drum on the left side. The globe in the lower background is representing the earth receiving the Aquarian energies.

See more pictures on the site with my paintings. If you want to print the image, you can download the file in medium and high resolution format.
The different zodiacal signs are clustered in groups – you can see here all my Aquarius paintings.

8 October 2016, pencils and photo work

On the Traces of Sripada – The Second Tour to Pithapuram

January 21st, 2017

Sunday morning 15 January around 5 am we went with a second group of 11 persons to Pithapuram, the birthplace of Sripada Srivallabha. There was not much traffic on the way and so we arrived already at 8 am. I wondered how this visit would be – the first one had stirred a lot of attention, with the presentation of the new German translation of the Sripada biography. This visit would certainly be much calmer…

The driver first stopped at the wrong place – the Kukkuteswara temple (I did not recognise it; two years ago, I had entered it from another gate). Some youth explained to the driver how to get to the Maha Samsthanam, the temple at the birthplace of Sripada.

We had to walk a bit – a motorbike driver showed us the direction. When we reached the entrance, a cow stood there looking with a profound glance. Inside the temple people were going around the sanctum or sitting in the centre or along the walls reading. We also circumambulated the shrine and then sat on benches at the side for meditation. We had no program and I wondered how the day would unfold.


The entrance to the temple at the birthplace of Sripada


A turtle in front of the temple – a profound symbolism

After half an hour a person came and asked us if we would like to participate in the Abhishekam ceremony – a ceremonial washing of the symbol of Sripada’s feet. We agreed. I went to the office to pay a small amount for the ceremony and then sat with the others in rows before the shrine. At 9 am some priests started reciting Vedic hymns and one priest inside the shrine started washing the feet with various liquid substances, mainly curd coloured with kurkuma or other herbs. Our foreheads were decorated with kumkum (red powder) and vibhuti (sacred ash) pastes. Later, we received some of the curd to drink as a blessing. While the ceremony was going on, a dog came and went along the lines – Dattatreya’s greetings.

After the ceremony a priest came and spoke with members of the group. He said he knew that we were coming and that he came because he knows English and wanted to welcome us. He explained us the ritual and a bit about the temple.


Group photo in front of the Audumbara tree with the statue of Sripada

Around 10 am Srinivas, my Indian friend from the States and his wife arrived – I had met him already in Bengaluru. He proposed to show us a place with an old book about Sripada and the Kukkuteswara temple. We followed him. As we were leaving the temple, the motorbike driver was again at the same place where we had left him two hours before. He took Srinivas on the backseat and showed us the way to our bus. Then the two headed the bus and guided us through small roads to a house. It its court there was a small shrine with a place for fire rituals. Inside the house a priest welcomed us and showed us some Sanskrit palm leave manuscripts. He had done a translation of a very old book about Sripada’s life from Sanskrit to Telugu. They showed us a box which contained the old manuscript, and also the Telugu book they recently had published. It was a special moment.


Palm leave manuscript


Showing the box with the old manuscript

Afterwards Srinivas and the motorbike driver guided us to the Kukkuteswara temple. There we saw a statue of the divine Mother, a very old Shiva lingam and the self-manifested statue of Dattatreya, which is frequently mentioned in the Sripada biography.


The portal to the Kukkuteswara temple


A group photo with students visiting the temple

Our group then left for Visakhapatnam. Srinivas had arranged a visit to a Dattatreya temple in Vannepudi, a village on the way back. We drove some small roads over the countryside and came to a village. We arrived at a pond with a statue in the centre. It turned out that this was a temple of the divine Mother. A priest explained to us that it was a very special, magnetic place with a unique figure of the mother standing erect in a fire. He conducted a small ritual and then there was the obligatory group photo.


The statue of the Mother in the pond


Entrance to the temple of the Mother and of Shiva


The priest in front of the statue of the Mother


Picture of an image of the Mother

On the way back we arrived at the Dattatreya temple which had already closed – it was past noontime. But when we went around the temple, some people came with the priest. They opened the temple for us and the priest conducted a ritual and gave us the blessing of fire and flowers.


Dattatreya statue on the outer wall of the temple


The priest conducting the ritual


Group photo in front of the temple

When we drove back to Vizag we all felt very happy about this auspicious day.

Celebration of the 56th Guru Pujas

January 20th, 2017

Tuesday morning two old buses brought the group to Simhachalam, where in the outer court of the temple uphill we met Master Kumar and Kumari-Garu. At the entrance to the second court the Master was received with honours. Headed by a group of musicians, we circumambulated the inner court of the temple and then entered into the innermost part. There priest conducted a ceremony for the Master and Kumari-garu in front of the sanctum sanctorum. The Master later explained that inside the lingam formed by sandalwood powder there are symbols of the Varaha Avatar, symbolising the upliftment from the Muladhara, the Lion, symbolising the heart centre and the Man 7 Cosmic person, symbolising the Sahasrara. Afterwards we stood a while with the Master in the outer court of the temple where he gave some explanations of the symbolism of the temple. It was a very thrilling experience – the Master had not been with us in the temple for a number of years and never I witnessed such a splendorous reception.


Going up to the temple of Simhachalam


Inside the outer court


Group photo with Sri Kumar and Kumari-garu


An interview

Later we went down the long stairway to the valley and came to the Guru Puja compound where the preparation work was going on. It was again very astonishing how the Indian brotherhood managed to set up such a huge hall in such a short time.


Walking down to the valley


At the pond


Cow in the palm forest where we had our siesta

In the late afternoon the celebration of the 56th Guru Pujas started with a small ceremony to Lord Ganesha followed by Vedic chantings and worship of the presence of the great Masters symbolised by their images on the stage among others.


Master Kumar entering for inaugurating the Guru Puja celebration


Master Kumar and Kumari-Garu conducting a ritual to Ganesha

After evening meditation the Master began with the first discourse. Since I had no access to hearing the English translation of the Telugu words of Sri Kumar, I did a re-translation from the German translation. These are the opening words:

“All who have come to the Guru Puja celebrations my hearty welcome greetings. We are at the bottom of Lakshmi Narasimha Swami, the temple we have visited. We celebrate the 56th Guru Puja celebrations with the blessings of the Divine. This we could do without having any interruption. The fact that the Guru Pujas could be conducted in such a continuous way is a blessing of the Hierarchy. Master started here the Guru Puja celebrations November 1971. Master EK conducted the Guru Pujas before there was the WTT but since the WTT was founded they are conducted by the WTT. At many occasions the members thought whether we should conduct the Guru Pujas somewhere else but the Lord on the Hill saw that we conduct the Guru Pujas in his area. From the aspect of Yoga the goddess being present here sees that we are uplifted. The upliftment from the material state even lifts up the earth; it is the avatar of Varaha, the boar.

Since our birth we are sunk in problems, and we urgently need to be uplifted. We are units of consciousness, we are not just these bodies and we also not have just these states of awareness. There is another aspect. The Lord causes the upliftment from the material state. The Lord causes this upliftment from the material. In Vishnu Sahasranama we praise the Lord Varaha. Varaha and Narasimha, the Man-Lion are two avatars of Vishnu, and at this holy place both aspects of the Lord are present. He is called Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha. Since the Lord is there the Mother is also there. So the sanctum is called Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha. Here the Lord is only seen in a small form. There are places where the Lord is seen in huge forms and places, where he is seen in smaller forms. The Lord gives a medicine for our situation. The Lord is so much hidden here that his power is hidden below sandalwood powder, you cannot photograph him. He has the message, I am the right means for you. The more you purify yourself inwardly, the more I will become visible for you So much dirt is in our body, our thoughts and mind, the first aspect is that we purify ourselves. At such a holy place we conduct the Guru Pujas. Since a short time we are at this new place but it is still the surroundings of the Lord. It is the 33rd Guru Pujas since Master EK left the body. The Guru Pujas were conducted before with Master EK and afterwards. The number 33 has a profound meaning. The Indian brotherhood has worked very much to set up a splendorous place here. There is a lot of light and radiance there. It is lie sitting in a garden, there are so many plants here. The group has worked so much to make the place beautiful. This is because there is so much purity inside that it could manifest in the outer. When there is no purity inside there cannot be expressed purity in the outside. The different aspects like the air, the arrangement of the images, the incense, all this produces an upliftment of consciousness when we perceive it. The sounds we do with the singing, all this causes the needed purification…”

Each of the days of the Guru Pujas has a major ritual in the morning: On the first day there was the Rudra Abhishekam, the Water Ritual dedicated to the First logos. The second day there was the Fire Ritual dedicated to the Second Logos. And on the third day there was the Lalitha Sahasranama, the worship ritual to the World Mother. It is always a thrilling ambiance when the sounds of the rituals are reverberating through space while the worships is conducted.


End of the Water Ritual conducted by Ravi Shankar


Master Kumar and Kumari-Garu conducting the Fire Ritual


Women during the Lalitha Puja

On the second day the Western members join the Master on the stage for morning meditation. There the presence of the great Masters whose images are installed with beautiful flower decorations. And later in the morning there was the meeting for “Spiritual Fusion of East and West”. Six members from different Western countries were asked to come to the stage. The Master spoke about the wisdom preserved in the various parts of the globe is an expression of the universal wisdom which is eternal. He later presented the publications which have been done during the last year in the West. He presented in length the Sripada book about the cosmic teacher, Lord Dattatreya. Then he asked us present on the stage to say some words. It was a very moving moment to hear the different contributions.


The western group during lunch


Morning of the second day – fusion of East and West. Western group on the dais


Presentation of the Sripada biography


Ladies from the West


The book shop

These were very intense and long days with little sleep – we returned to Visakhapatnam in the late night and started again at 4:45 am. But the strong spiritual vibrations created by the joint orientation of the group to the sublime dimensions generate a profound ambiance of upliftment, and the celebration is always a very inspiring gathering. When the Guru Pujas close with the Paduka Puja – the worship of the feet of the Teacher as a symbol of the divine grace we were all filled with gratitude for having been able to attend to this extraordinary group meeting.


Pada Puja


Symbol of the Simhachalam temple

The Second Part of the WTT-Seminar in Visakhapatnam

January 10th, 2017

Thursday morning the Master and Kumari-Garu conducted a fire ritual in the basement of Radhamadhavam, the site of the World Teacher Temple, where the seminar takes place and where both are also living – some group members including me too, at the moment. Later the rhythm of seminar lectures and the consultations of the Master continued.

Friday afternoon the group went to Ramadri, the multi-service project in the surroundings of Visakhapatnam. On the way we had a short stop at the Planetary Healing centre. The hall was still standing there and in the garden there were the statues of Lord Maitreya and the Buddha but the surroundings had lost the splendour we used to experience in earlier years. Many trees the hurricane 2.5 years ago has swept away; but there was also a change in the ambiance. And in the surrounding area there now are lots of houses – it is no longer the serene little paradise which is still cherished in the minds of those who knew the earlier days.


The Center for Planetary Healing

Ramadri, or Hamsa Vanam, the seat of the Swan of subtle inner pulsation, however, seemed to be more radiant than ever. A long row of shining children eyes were there waiting for us. The children were handing roses to us and then gathered at the little amphitheatre while we went around the beautiful site to visit the small temples and the “Gosala” the cow service project at the top of the side. The breathtaking view of the ocean, the well-kept little temples and statues, the small Mithila school for free education of poor children of the surroundings and the spiritual activities have all contributed to build up a strongly vibrating space. And under small little stupas there are millions of “Sri Ram” mantras put into the earth in small stone boxes to anchor the vibration of the sound vibration.


Students of the Mithila school welcoming us with a rose


The Hanuman statue


Dattatreya statue


The Gosala – cow shed

Later, when we sat at the amphitheatre, groups of children gave performances of dance and recitations. It was such a sublime scenery to witness that touched us very deeply. Master Kumar afterwards explained that there are by now 15 service centres of the WTT in the surroundings of Visakhapatnam carrying out different kinds of activities – several schools financed by contributions of the group members, free health and homeo dispensaries, distribution of food and clothes… All is carried out without any publicity, for the welfare of people in need.
After evening prayer we returned to the Retreat Centre in Visakhapatnam.


Students performing a dance

Sunday morning there was again a fire ritual, a very elaborate one because it was Vaikunta Ekadasi, the 11th moon phase in Capricorn. Master Kumar explained the significance of this moon phase: The 11th moon phase in Capricorn is considered to be very sacred and is also mentioned in Bhagavad Gita. Since Sun in Capricorn is visualised in our body in the higher heart centre (upper part of the chest), which is related to the Cosmic Person in us and Moon (representing in this context our consciousness) at this time is around Aries or Taurus and thus is visualised in the head, there is the chance of a good alignment between soul and super-soul and passing over to higher dimensions, to Samadhi.

Monday morning Master Kumar concluded the seminar. Here is an extract of the short talk summarizing the teaching:
“I spoke about the inner alignment. The soul who descended into the human form could regain the association with the Master within and thereby establish the contact once again. Once the contact is established, since he knows the consequences of de-linking he would no more de-link. In the beginning the soul and the super-soul were together. The soul did not realise the importance of linking to the super-soul because he did not know the consequences of de-linking to the super-soul. So he looked into so many forms into creation. When he saw the human form he fell into love with the human form and the super-soul said, yes, you can get in but the form is so attractive that you might forget me. Make sure that you keep contact. The soul thought that they have been friends for so many cycles that he would not forget the connection. But the super-soul knows what illusion is and how this illusion happens. When you are attracted to something this will de-link you from your original association.
The soul thought it would not lose contact with the super-soul. It said, I will ensure that I will keep the contact and the super-soul wished him good luck. When he approached the form he found it very beautiful and forgot already the super-soul and when he entered he forgot the super-soul completely. He experienced a lot of pain and pleasure. We look for pleasure but experience pain. It took so many incarnations to link again, after experiencing the mind, the 5 senses and the experiences with body organs.
The story speaks of the initial incarnations and final incarnations. In between there are so many incarnations. Finally he was incarnated as a princess and had the association to a king who is an initiate who happened to be her husband. That was the last initiation. From him she received much energy, knowledge and the needed impulse to do the needed practices. Consequently she could link up to the Master again. The Master had always been there but in spite of the information that the Master is in us it becomes possible only when it becomes the priority. The Master spoke so many pleasant things, that the soul is no different from the super-soul, he explained the nature of the form and when you enter that you tend to forget me, and that you have to constantly remember be. If you forget me the facility becomes a limitation. If you do not know how to use the facility it becomes a limitation.
So the soul realised and it was much deeper. She was linked to the Master again after having experiences so much pains and pleasures.”

The talk was followed by the Valedictory function. Members of each of the 7 countries present at the group living and Navaneetham of the Indian brotherhood spoke some words – a beautiful kaleidoscope of experiences and expressing their thanks. Afterwards Sri Kumar gave some profound remarks as per what each of the speakers had said.

Then some gifts of clothes were handed over to all the Indian members who had help with the group living and we received from the Master a wooden elephant, as a symbol of wisdom, and a lingam – a stone symbolising the creative energy.

This was the end of the seminar – but I spoke to some of the members and like me none had realised yet with their feeling that it had already come to a close.

In the afternoon we met on the roof terrace of Radhamadhavam for group picture – it was a very joyful get-together and after evening meditation the Master again offered a sumptuous dinner prepared by a hotel.


Precious image of Gayatri


During the Valedictory Function


Group photo on the roof of Radhamadhavam

The First Part of the WTT Seminar in Visakhapatnam

January 8th, 2017

Sunday morning, 1 January, the Western group met with Master Kumar and members of the brotherhood of Visakhapatnam at Sundavaram, the site with statue of Master EK at the beach road, for morning prayer followed by a talk of the Master in Telugu with a “New Year” message and a breakfast. Among other things, Sri Kumar pointed out that there can be several beginning of a new year but the first of January is not a date marked by planetary or cosmic rhythms but given by a Roman emperor.

In the evening the seminar on “Citizen” started. The human soul is compared to a citizen, an indweller in the body. The city is no other than the human body: “The human body is by far the most beautiful form that is conceived by the third Logos in cooperation with the second Logos called Vishnu and the first Logos called Shiva.” The story gives the adventures of the soul which takes hold over the body and gets lost in it, in objectivity, and Master Kumar will speak about it during this seminar.

Wednesday, we went on a trip to the Anantagiri Mountains about 100 km from Visakhapatnam to visit the Borra Caves, a system of huge caves where there are some natural Shiva lingams in a mountain range. After leaving the city the road slowly climbed up the hills and we had beautiful sights over rice fields and mountain. After 2.5 hours we arrived at the caves. We had already been there nine years ago. On the way to the cave a group of monkeys was playing – and waiting for tourists to catch some eatables. A huge hole was like the gate to the netherworlds, from where a staircase lead into the first cave. It made me think of entering a giant skull. There was hole at the top from where light came in (the Sahasrara) and the entrance reminded of the Ajna centre. Deeper down a bridge was leading over a gorge to a mountain inside the huge cave with a small cave. Inside, there was a natural Shiva lingam and some pictures of the Divine illumined by an oil lamp. A priest blessed us with a red brow mark.

Still deeper down at the end of the second cave we gathered to sing 21 times OM – a majestic feeling of penetrating the the surrounding matter by the rays of the spiritual light.

Later we went to a village named Araku for lunch. A member of the WTT had invited the group to this beautiful place with a tourist resort. Some musicians with flute and drums and a group of lady dancers in rose sarees came for a traditional local dance. They were inviting the onlookers to join them, and so I was whirled around for one round before getting back to the “role of an observer”.

It was already about 8 pm when we came back to the Retreat Centre.

Thursday morning the Master and Kumari-Garu conducted a fire ritual in the basement of Radhamadhavam, the site of the World Teacher Temple, where the seminar takes place and where they are also living. Later the rhythm of seminar lectures and the consultations of the Master continued.

First Journey to Pithapuram, the Birth-Place of Sripada Srivallabha

January 6th, 2017

The morning after arriving in Visakhapatnam I wanted to go to Pithapuram, the birthplace of Sripada Srivallabha. I had planned to go there on the 15th but since a few friends could not join on that day, I decided to do this extra-trip on 31 December. We ended up to be 22 persons in a bus.


Walking through Pithapuram

There was heavy traffic on the roads and the ride took us 3.5 hours. When we finally arrived at the temple compound, the Maha Samsthanam, there was a huge crowd. I came to know only a day later that it was the birthday celebration of Narasimha Saraswati, the second incarnation of Lord Dattatreya, who lived in the 14th and 15th century.

We were guided into the office and later to the area in front of the sanctum sanctorum, where Sri Ramaswami Garu, the spiritual head of the temple was seated. He is now 91 years of age and participated in the celebration in spite of his body marked by disease. His eyes were still shining with a strong spiritual presence. I presented to him the German translation of the Sripada Srivallabha Charitamrutam while the people around were taking photos. Then the book was given to the priest at the sanctum who put it for a moment on the pedestal with the symbols of the “padukas”, the much revered symbols of the sandals of Sripada, and then it was decorated with sandalwood powder. Later I presented it to one of the heads of the Samsthanam.


Inside the office

We sat for a while in the office of the Samsthanam. The whole time I felt besides myself and let the “show go on”. While Sripada’s spiritual presence is strongly penetrating the space, on the surface other priorities seem to be more in the foreground. I don’t want to comment on this but I already noticed on the huge poster at the outskirts of the town: In the upper left corner you could see the picture of the three statues of Dattatreya, Sripada and Narasimha Saraswati from the “sanctum sanctorum”; the major part of the poster, however, was occupied by to big pictures, one of Sri Ramaswami and one of an official, and two lines with quite big pictures of a number of temple officials – the priorities of importance? Later Sri Kumar gave me some profound remarks about the situation there…


The poster outside Pithapuram

I was honoured with a scarf in violet and gold with a picture of Sripada, then we saw again the Swami lying in a bed behind the office rooms. While he gave us again his blessings I had the impression that he had already passed half way over to the other side.

We then were offered lunch and afterwards tried to sit quietly inside the temple which was a bit difficult with the people circumambulating or rolling themselves around the sanctum.

On the way back I told some stories of the incarnations of Dattatreya to the German members. When I later sat alone for a while, I asked myself what all this was about. I strongly felt that a very sublime energy is emanating from this birthplace of Sripada and that this is what all is about – the rest on the surface is just insignificant ripples on the huge ocean.

When two days later I spoke with Master Kumar about the visit at the Mah Samsthanam and the presentation of the book, he told me, “Don’t think that it is of paper, it is pure fire.”


Presenting the book to Sri Ramaswami Garu


Group photo


The Sanctum Sanctorum