Mahashivaratri 2021 celebrations in the Sri Premananda Centre of Dordogne, France

As no one was able to travel to India this year, we decided – for the first time in our Centre – to organize an all-night Mahashivaratri celebration.

The whole night was permeated with such a great and strong energy that, apart from one person who had arrived already tired because of specific circumstances, no one even had a thought of taking a nap or resting for a while in one of the two rooms we had prepared for such ‘emergencies’.

Our programme included two abhishekams to our lingams, with lingam blessings, and an early morning yagam to Swamiji in his aspect of Premeshvarar. Of course we first started with an astotra, and we also had two bhajan and kirtan sessions. We had thought to connect to the international programme via Zoom but, finally, we were so ‘busy’ that we were only able to see a little of the beginning and a few minutes of the cultural programme. Everyone helped with the preparations for the rituals, which was a good experience that created a very nice feeling of unity and togetherness.

In the middle of the night we went outdoors to do a kundalini dance meditation, dedicated to Shakti, around a circle of light. After having been seated indoors for so long it was very helpful to be out in the fresh air and move around. And, since the dance movements were a bit complex, in a way it was also quite amusing, as some of us kept mixing up our own arms and feet and going off in all directions. Besides all this, we also read one of Swamiji’s satsangs about the lingam and Shivaratri, and of course we had a small ceremony for the tying of the sacred threads as well as some tea breaks.

We definitely want to be able to come to the Ashram next year for Mahashivaratri, but in a way it was a wonderful gift to have been ‘pushed’ to create our own Shivaratri celebration at our place.

Thank you Swamiji and Lord Shiva for all the blessings!

Jai Prema Shanti!

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