This is a recording of a puja (worship service) to Shiva - the timestamp fulfills the platform need only. View at your own leisure.
In 2020 we celebrated Maha Shivaraatri in our Yale Prayer Room, the last puja we celebrated in person. While the past 12 months have been difficult on many fronts, we have learned a lot about ourselves. Some lessons have taught us the wisdom of stepping back when we need to, some have pushed us into a different patterns of living, working and thinking we might never have imagined. I am stretching my own wings technologically by recording a puja for Maha Shivaraatri. It isn’t perfect (I apparently can’t count up to 11 Om Namah Shivaayas!) but I hope you enjoy it.
There is a puja program you can download so that you can follow along and chant with me. It can be found by clicking on this link.
The video is on the Yale Chaplain’s Office YouTube channel:
While the offerings were made to a Shiva lingam, I had my parents’ Nataraja statue in the background. Here is a passage celebrating this vibrant form of Shiva, Lord of the Cosmic Dance:
“He danced…the eight directions and the universe shook and the hood of Adi Sesha trembled, and from the head of Shiva gushed forth the river Ganga, and all those who worshipped him bowed down their heads in supplication and wonder. While he danced, evil was destroyed and the world gained its salvation (How to Conduct Puja to Shiva, A.V. Srinivasan, 2016).”
Resources from the video:
The program is based on How to Conduct Puja to Shiva by Dr. A.V. Srinivasan, author of many books on Hinduism including Hinduism for Dummies. Full disclosure: Dr. Srinivasan is my father. The Yale HSO has used these puja booklets as their template for most of the pujas they host since I joined as their Hindu chaplain in 2013. The music in the beginning of the video is from Sounds of Isha - Amla - Yoga Padhi
Love and light to all -
Dr. Asha Shipman, Director of Hindu Life, Yale Chaplain’s Office