śrī mahāganapate namaha
śrī sarasvtyai namaha
śrī pādavallabha narasimha sarasvati
śrī guru dattātreyāya namaha
dātāram sarva sampadam
lokābhi rāmam śri rāmam
bhuyo bhuyo namāmyaham
There is such great energy in the divine name “Rama” that chanting it once daily is enough. “Rama” mantra is full of Vedanta. That is why Lord Hanuman gave the “Rama” mantra to this world. Lord Hanuman is himself chanting the divine name of Sri Rama as is Lord Shiva. Rama means jeevatma and paramatma. Rama mantra is full of Vedanta. You already know about Sri Rama and Ramayana. Older people in India are always chanting the name of Sri Rama. Practice chanting the name of Lord Rama with your breath. The power of Omkara is also in Rama mantra. Tomorrow is Guru Purnima. We are also inaugurating Raja Gopuram (temple entrance tower). Karya Siddhi Hanuman Temple is known throughout the world.
We are all worldly people who carry out our karma with sorrows, confusions and problems. Come and see Lord Hanuman here and pray with concentration and devotion. All your problems will vanish, and you develop the energy to fight problems. Having Darshan of Lord Hanuman once will wipe away all sorrows. It is even better if you have Darshan of the Lord while chanting Sri Rama mantra. That will put Lord Hanuman's attention on you. Immediately sing praises of Lord Hanuman. This is a way of worship. First chant Sri Rama's name to get the attention of Lord Hanuman. And then sing praises of Lord Hanuman. Lord Hanuman fulfills all desires and grants good energy. He gives you courage to face problems. We all have desires and afflictions. Do your duty without forgetting your Dharma and without forgetting the Lord’s name. That is what Swamiji always says.
You all know what Raja gopuram is, what a kalaśa (pitcher/pot) is, what antarālayam is. This entire temple is like a physical body in which God resides. The temple is architected according to āgama śāstra. Temples and satsangs are established so we can remind ourselves about the presence of divinity which we so easily forget because we are caught up in our problems. Sorrows are very powerful and always are top of mind. It is a big disease human have. We cannot win without the Lord's grace. That is why, surrender yourself and chant the Lord's name constantly, at all times. Carry out your duty while chanting the Lord's name.
We have all come to USA from other countries. But we should not forget our Dharma and our Gods. The great country of America has given us many opportunities. Otherwise, we would not be able to do what we are doing. We have permissions to build temples and follow our Dharma in this land. What a great country this is. If they restricted or prohibited people from following their Dharma, we would not be able to do all this. They are very friendly country. We have a little India here. We have the permission to build such a big temple. I will say thanks to all the Presidents, even President Trump. We have food on the table because of the opportunities this country provides to people settling here from around the world. Moreover, they are letting us build our temples and observe our religious practices. We are sitting together and singing bhajans. We are observing all major festivals with fanfare. We are not missing out anything in India. What we are missing is our own confidence and devotion. You are creating your own problems. Open your heart and look within. Broaden your perspective. One of our bhajans “guru kē samān nahī” says “manakō viśāl kījē, khēliyē maidān mē”. What a beautiful bhajan. Swamiji has placed a little Vedanta in every bhajan. Study Swamiji’s bhajans and you will find that Bhagavatam, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Upanishads are all in the bhajans.
Vedas are very difficult to practice. It takes about 25 years of one’s life. However, Ramayana, Bhagavatam and other scriptures are easier to study. We cannot grab the sun, but we can soak in the sun rays. Vedas are the like the sun while the Upanishads, Ramayana, Mahabharata and other scriptures, rituals, divine names etc. are like the sun rays. There are billions of rays of sun, just as there are divine names of God. All Vedanta, Upanishads, Puranas and other scriptures have their origin in the Vedas just as sun rays have their origin in the sun. We cannot go to the sun, but we can easily experience the sun rays. So, the divine names like “Rama” are like sun rays. This Hanuman temple, tomorrow’s Guru Purnima etc are also like the sun rays. We need to devotionally get absorbed in these. Just as the wives called rivers eventually merge into the husband called ocean, all scriptures and divine names merge in the Paramatman. So, do not assume it is hard to attain Paramatman. Chant divine names. Follow Dharma. Visit this temple, devotionally follow Lord Hanuman or your favorite deity. Catch hold of any one of the billions of sun rays. As soon as the morning sun rays fall on your skin, you get vitamin D, your skin diseases diminish and your mind feels healthy. Europeans sun bathe to soak in the sun rays. Of course, excessive sun is not good for the body either. The children sang the bhajans so beautifully. They took the first step today in rendering those bhajans like a symphony. Those divine names they sang can wash away your afflictions. Start with baby steps. Do not make excuses about lack of time or inability to understand the meaning. Listen to scholars chanting verses from the Vedas even if you do not understand. Learn to sit with discipline and simply listen, first. How can you do this if you have no devotion or faith? So, never think you cannot attain God. It is very easy to attain God. We are the ones complicating things, creating confusions and acting foolishly. Think carefully and contemplate deeply and you will find bliss.
Tomorrow's Guru Purnima is also a way to attain God. Participate in all rituals. You never know which being Swamiji is here for. Otherwise, Swamiji did not need to come here all the way from India. You can each hold the belief that Swamiji is here for you. Why not?