April 2012


From The Bhumi Project

Enter a Hindu temple and you’ll be greeted by the smell of incense, beautiful colours, puja, and prasad. We want our offerings to be Sattvic (in purity and goodness) and made with love and devotion. How can we make our puja as Sattvic, and thus as green as possible? Are we doing everything we can easily do? Many Hindu households also have shrines and altars – why not aim to do the same at home? As will be shown below, making our Puja and Mandir green is easy and all about Dharma, the right thing to do.

Step 1: Greener Puja
In making our offering to the Lord we want the best, to be as devotional as possible. Organic and locally grown fruit and flowers are readily available in most shops. Such produce has less impact upon Bhumi – Mother Earth – with lower carbon emissions and less pesticides polluting the local environment – a more devotional option. By offering filtered tap water rather than bottled brands, we can save money and unnecessary plastic.The more thought and effort we put into our offerings, the more of ourselves we are giving.

Step 2: Home Grown Garden
Gandhi often quoted the Isa Upanishad, which describes the natural world as belonging to the supreme Lord – making this world God’s garden. By being mindful of this, we can make our home and temple gardens greener. Just by growing our own produce we can reduce carbon emissions – and it’s easier than it seems, as  fruit and vegetables can be successfully grown in window boxes, allowing us to use the garden God has given us in our spiritual lives. Even if you don’t have a garden you can still benefit the planet by buying organic produce which supports farmers committed to preserving the countryside and its plant and animal life.

Step 3: Greener Festivals
Hindu festivals are huge, joyous occasions, with devotees coming together to worship. Festivals are also a great opportunity to offer our new home-grown produce at the temple. The amount of plastic plates, cups and spoons used at Hindu family and temple festivals can be embarrassing, but we can all help to reduce this by bringing our own plates to temple gatherings. Better still, we could  promote the use of biodegradable plates, cups, and spoons to our families and local temple community. We have a responsibility to provide an example of good practice in our religious observance.

Step 4: Pilgrimage
Journeys to the Mandir can also be a part of a greener, Dharma-centered life. Public transport saves a huge amount of energy. Chances are there are plenty of travel links in our towns to local temples and gatherings. Or, if it’s more convenient to drive, why not try car-sharing? By bringing along as many people as we can and making sure we never drive alone, it’s easily done.  If our Mandirs are local, we can walk. It’s a great way of lowering our carbon footprint, and increasing our Bhumi footprint.

Step 5: Sacred Waste
We happily receive wedding invitations, Diwali cards and other spiritual publications every year. With their sacred imagery, rarely do we want to throw them in the bin. Yet, there are traditional recommendations of how to dispose of sacred waste – usually burying and burning, but also immersion in running water, provided we have permission from local authorities. We can also recycle the paper and card left behind. Ask your local temple if they have suggestions.

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Anyone wondering why I haven’t responded to an email in 3 days it is because of bizarre circumstances.  Every time I try to go to Gmail  I get a error message “The connection to the server was reset while the page was loading.. .” This happens occasionally with satellite connection which is the only option available to us out in the sticks types not near a cable line or so far out on copper phone lines that DSL doesn’t work. Normally I try again and succeed. Not recently. Multiple attempts successively fail.

In this case I am still able to access any other site on the web, just no Google product sites.

I have cleared the Temporary Internet Files folder and deleted cookies then done a hard reboot and no success. I tried doing the above again then using a different browser. I normally use Firefox  so tried IE and same result except it showed an error message from HughesNet. It had a little diagnostic procedure that failed but left me with a phone number and an error code to call in.

I spent a half an hour on the phone with a polite Indian gentleman and tried numerous things, many of which I had already done on my own. He was unable to resolve it but did say he was going to “escalate” the case and someone would be calling me back in 24-48 hours.

In the mean  time I was at the temple yesterday and someone let me check access there and I could indeed get into my account from that location (the temple has a T-1 line).  Unfortunately I was in the middle of a work flow with another devotee involved and couldn’t spent any time reviewing the messges.

While correlation is not necessarily causation, this did start at the same time I signed up for iGoogle — since then I can’t access Google products. Not even the search page.

I didn’t even want to sign up for iGoogle but I was working on a project with someone online and it arose that I needed to download an album from Picasa but to do so I had to register for it. The only way to do that turned out to be to register for iGoogle so I sort of accidentally got roped into doing so.

I thought if I got shed of iGoogle, I might be OK. Unfortunately all the instructions on how to delete iGoogle involve signing in and I was unable to do so.

My daughter Vraja happened to call while I was beating my head against the wall on this issue, so she agreed to access my Google account.  It took a while because I assume that what iGoogle did was email me a password, which because I couldn’t access my email I never got.

It was able to tell that the location being logged into from wasn’t my home and asked for my phone number to verify it was me which didn’t help because I had never finished the registration process having never gotten the password.  This stumped us for  awhile until it asked a security question which I did know the answer to.

Unfortunately none of the instructions we found on several different websites worked. It said get to My Products, click on Edit next to iGoogle, and then Delete. When we went to delete however, it kept talking about deleting Gmail as well which I did NOT want to do.  We were able to switch the Search page to Classic which in theory disables iGoogle, but after emptying the stash, deleting cookies, and rebooting, same result: no access to Gmail.

Today I have made arrangements to met someone at the temple who will let me work on their laptop so I may be able to make a dent in the backlog but in any case don’t be offended if you aren’t getting an expected reply from me.

Call.

“Humility means that no one should be anxious to have the satisfaction of being honored by others. The material conception of life makes us very eager to receive honor from others, but from the point of view of a man in perfect knowledge-who knows that he is not this body-anything-honor or dishonor-pertaining to this body is useless. One should not be hankering after this material deception. People are very anxious to be famous for their religiousness”

Bhagavad Gita 7-11

“Do you want to know God? Then learn to understand the weaknesses and imperfections of other men. But how can you understand the weaknesses of others unless you understand your own? And how can you see the meaning of your own limitations until you have received mercy from God, by which you know yourself and Him?”

Thomas Merton. No Man Is An Island. New York: Doubleday and Company, 1955: 214

” It is not sufficient to forgive others: we must forgive them with humility and compassion. If we forgive them without humility, our forgiveness is a mockery: it presupposes that we are better than they.”

No Man Is An Island.: 214

Got this link in email with following comments. This is well worth the time to watch.

All glories to Srila Prabhupada, please accept my humble obeissances.

Please find below a link which stroke me with wonder… When you know that
the dancers are deaf and dumb… some times during the show we see their
teacher in the wings helping them…
It made me think how important it is to have full faith in the instructions
of our beloved teacher Srila Prabhupada ! If I, quite spiritually disabled,
could have the same quality of faith and determination than these girls,
the result would also be gorgious !

The danse is called :”Danse of the 1000 hands Buddha

http://college.chinese.cn/conference09/article/2009-12/12/content_93218.htm

ATD

At The Doctor’s

BFF

Best Friend Farted

BTW

Bring The Wheelchair

BYOT

Bring Your Own Teeth

CBM

Covered By Medicare

CGU

Can’t Get Up

CGIP

Can’t Get IT Up

CUATSC

See You At The Senior Center

DWI

Driving While Incontinent

FWB

Friend With Betablockers

FWIW

Forgot Where I Was

FYI

Found Your Insulin

GGPBL

Gotta Go; Pacemaker Battery Low!

GLKI

Gotta Go; Laxative Kicking In

GHA

Got Heartburn Again

HGBM

Had Good Bowel Movement

IMHO

Is My Hearing-Aid On?

LMDO

Laughing My Dentures Out

LOL

Living On Lipitor

LWO

Lawrence Welk’s On

OMMR

On My Massage Recliner

OMSG

Oh, My! Sorry — Gas.

PIMP

Pooped In My Pants

ROFL & ICGU

Rolling On the Floor Laughing And I Can’t Get Up

SGGP

Sorry; Gotta Go Poop

TTYL

Talk To You Louder

WAITT

Who Am I Talking To?

WTFA

Wet The Furniture Again

WTP

Where’s The Prunes?

WWNO

Walker Wheels Need Oil

Good news yesterday when I went to my kidney doctor. Turns out while my kidney function is down to about 20%, it may not be the main reason for my recent bout with hyperkalemia. (dangerously high level of potassium)

Another very possible cause may be Lisinipril, a medication I was taking .  It sometimes contributes to potassium accumulation. While on its own it is fine, coupled with the potassium sparing effects of Prograf, the rejection suppression medicine I must take, it can be too much.

This is good news because it is another plausible cause for the huyperkalemia and by switching medications may resolve the issue. The alternative is that if  it is kidney dysfunction and I would have to restrict dietary intake of potassium, that  over-simplistically means no more fruits and vegetables for moi. Not a pleasant prospect.

It did come up that at some point, maybe months, maybe as long as a year, I will have to get on dialysis,  a machine that mechanically cleans the blood when the kidneys can’t anymore. I have agreed to go to dialysis orientation classes  even though I am not convinced I will go that route.  The alternative being letting nature take its course and getting a whole body transplant. I do, after all, believe in reincarnation.

During the discussion, it came up that a patient on dialysis one day ate two whole watermelons and died of heart failure. Watermelons being high in potassium and hyperkalemia can result in heart failure.

Not the worst way to go. :-)

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