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My Pilgrimage in Houston

Monday May 15, 2023 

 

We would now look at some of the other things we did while here in Houston .

 

We first visited the Iskcon temple, but not before we had some of the meals they had to offer { prasadam } at the Govinda restaurant .

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I went around a tour in and around the temple .

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If I may add, I'm an X Iskcon member. I served as an initiated disciple of Satsvarupa Maharaja for over a decade .

Although I had visited lots of temples in Guyana where I'm from, I had never seen such elaborate architecture layout and design in and around the temple. Quite amazing .

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We then visited A buddhist Temple . Although the gates  were closed, we went anyway and  did a walk around the yard on a boardwalk where there’s lots of Buddha statues as we went .

 Of Course there was a big dog to welcome us as we entered . He looks cross yet calm as I introduce myself to him by saying good dog . 

With every Buddha statue i met i would offer my silent obeisance to them 

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We then left and went to visit a Shiva temple .

Inside was a huge Shiva Linga , A temple Devotee  which was bathing the linga .

Now I have wanted to learn how to take care of the linga since I was given one and don't know  how to take care of it . 

My experience there was great . The smell of incense burning and the quietness, with bells ringing, was so beautifully calm . 

 The day after , it was raining a lot , just about all day .

We were, however, able to go visit some other temples .

We first visited another Buddest. Now this temple was the biggest so far, with gigantic Buddhist statues in and around the huge temple yard .It was called the vietnam Buddhist temple, here in houston texas .

Now that experience there was somewhat different in the sense that there was an actual temple program going on . We took our shoes off at the door and went in to join the others . Inside was the priest and about 15 other members .It was an immediate difference. As I sat quietly listening to the recitation of the stanza to their foreign language which I couldn't understand, my eyes kept close .  After about 20 minutes or so there was a distinct message in my head which told me to stop being carried away by the glamour and beauty of the external aspect of the temple and pay attention to the teaching of the Buddha .I then opened my eyes to look around to see if there was someone outside speaking to me . I haven't said this to anyone but continue to observe myself in the prayer and worship in the temple . Shortly thereafter the temple priest  got up and started walking very slowly around the inside of the temple . It was more like a meditation walk . We then walked around 3 times then went back to the recitation of the verses . As we came to the end , and finished the rituals ,we were given a fruit .I took the fruit and went outside. We then went outside to take pictures and read some of the beautiful writings on the beautifully engraved marble stones where it depicted the life of the Buddha .

   While reading about the Buddha's pastimes , again I was told in my head that I should eat my fruit just after it was given to me .

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 We then went and visited another Shiva temple . Again the priest was conducting the rituals as we entered, rang the bell, offered our obeisance and joined in, this time there was only one attendant. After the priest finished his rituals he offered us a small spoon of water, along with some nuts .We again went outside to walk around the temple, took some other pictures and left for another temple .

 

This other temple was a one in the Madhvacharya lineage .

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We went into the temple, only to find it was in the middle of a service.

I was glad to know how they conduct their service .

We sat quietly listening to what the priest was saying . After a while the service came to an end and we again partake in the finishing rituals . We were again given a sip of water mixed with scented oil .

We then offered our obeisance and left . 

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