Kids from Lindenhurst visit Grayslake Temple

Kids and teachers from Lindenhurst Center
Kids and teachers from Lindenhurst Center

Geetha Patil
CHICAGO: More than sixty students from the first to sixth grades from Lindenhurst Early Childhood Center, Lindenhurst paid a visit on July 26 with their teachers to Hindu Mandir of Lake County, Grayslake, a Chicago suburb.
The teachers of this school selected this Hindu Temple from the feedback they received from the other schools in the area.The temple priests are knowledgeable in all aspects of Hinduism and its broad range of traditions to face inquisitive questioning from students.
The temple priest Pt. Anil Joshi took both teachers and students on the temple tour for an hour and talked to them about idols of deities in the temple and their significance. The students and teachers felt very fascinated by the beautification of shrine and excited to know more about some gods and asked a few amazing questions for their age.

They asked why Hindu gods have animals and birds around them; how do we know that God is giving His blessings; why Ma Durga has eight arms and sitting on a lion; why this hall is called shrine. Pt. Joshi Ji answered these questions by giving them examples from everyday life.
He said the Supreme God resides in every element of his creation, such as humans, animals, birds, plants, rivers, hills, mountains etc. while gods use them as their vehicles or abodes as well. Devotees worship and care for these natural elements. Joshi mentioned that God only gives and He never takes anything from the creation unlike teachers or parents. He added that students could gain knowledge from every teacher throughout their school careers and use the knowledge gained to make a living in the later period of life.
In the same fashion, coming to a temple and praying for God’s blessings always helps to lead a good life.
Pt. Joshi also pointed out that Goddess Durga’s eight arms symbolize the Divine forces (positive energy) that is used against the negative forces of evil and wickedness. Her vehicle tiger symbolizes huge power. He later explained that God’s images in the shrine are for bestowing positive energies for illumination in life. That is why Hindus call prayer hall as ‘shrine.’

Hindus believe there is a supreme power above theTrinity, which we cannot see but manifests in the form of Shivalingam. His presence is there everywhere. Any imbalance in the pancha mahabhuta, or “five great elements” of Hinduism creates problems in the human body and mind. This also bring imbalancein the universe. Hence, Trinity has assigned responsibilities to restore imbalance to different gods.
Lord Ganesh removes obstacles from our path. So, we start our prayers and tasks by worshiping Him first. Lord Shiva is a destroyer but in the sense He is a creator as well. Our Creator-Brahma, Protector-Vishnu, and Destroyer-Shiva are incomplete without the energies of female goddesses such as Lakshmi, Saraswati and Parvathi.
Yogesh Pandey performed Maha Mangalarati of temple deities with all the students and teachers and blessed them for their excellent education and bright future. Narendra Mannai, temple manager, distributed gift bags to all the children along with Prasadam. Everyone enjoyed the temple tour and the live experience.

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