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Vegetarian Cuisine

Crispy granola
This is lovely served with fresh yoghurt or simply as an alternative to home-made muesli.
Serves 4.

3 tbsp maple syrup
A few drops of vanilla extract
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
200g (7 oz) rolled oats
75g (2 ½ oz) oat bran
75g (2 ½ oz) sunflower seeds
60g (2 oz) pumpkin seeds
150g (5 ½ oz) raisins

1. Preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius (325 degrees Fahrenheit/Gas 3)
2. Mix the maple syrup, vanilla extract, and cinnamon with 3 tbsp hot water.
3. Mix the oats, oat bran, sunflower seeds, and pumpkin seeds together in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the maple syrup solution and mix well.
4. Spread the mixture onto two lightly oiled baking trays and bake in the oven, stirring occasionally for 20-25 minutes until golden. Add the raisins and bake for a further 5 minutes. Leave to cool and store in an airtight container.

The salt of life is selfless service. The bread of life is universal love. – Sri Swami Sivananda

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Spiritual Calendar

06 Sri Krishna Jayanti
08 Swami Sivananda Jayanti
10 Ekadasi
15 New Moon
19 Ganesh Chaturthi
25 Ekadasi
29 Full Moon

10 Ekadasi
15 New Moon
15 Navaratri begins
24 Dussera (Vijaya Dasami)
25 Ekadasi
29 Full Moon

Make life a perpetual joy. – Sri Swami Sivananda


Salutations to the Divine Mother, Durga, who exists in all beings in the form of intelligence, mercy, beauty, who is the consort of Lord Shiva, who creates, sustains and destroys the universe. Durga Puja or Navaratri commences on the first and ends on the tenth day of the bright half of Aswayuja (September-October). It is held in commemoration of the victory of Durga over Mahishasura, the buffalo-headed demon. Durga Puja is the greatest Hindu festival in which God is adored as Mother. Durga represents the Divine Mother. She is the energy aspect of the Lord. Without Durga, Shiva has no expression and without Shiva, Durga has no existence. Shiva is the soul of Durga; Durga is identical with Shiva. Lord Shiva is only the silent witness. He is motionless, absolutely changeless. He is not affected by the cosmic play. It is Durga who does everything. Shakti is the omnipotent power of the Lord, or the Cosmic Energy. The Divine Mother is represented as having ten different weapons in Her hands. She sits on a lion. She keeps up the play of the Lord through the three attributes of Nature, namely, Sattwa, Rajas and Tamas. Knowledge, peace, lust, anger, greed, egoism and pride, are all Her forms. You will find in the Devi Sukta of the Rig Veda Samhita that Vak, symbolising speech, the daughter of the sage Anbhirna, realised her identity with the Divine Mother, the Power of the Supreme Lord, which manifests throughout the universe among the gods, among men and beasts and among the creatures of the deep ocean. In the Kena Upanishad, you will find that the Divine Mother shed wisdom on Indra and the gods and said that the gods were able to defeat the demons only with the help of the power of the Supreme Lord. The worship of Devi, the universal Mother, leads to the attainment of knowledge of the Self. The story in the Kena Upanishad known as the “Yaksha Prasna”, supports this view. It tells how Uma, the Divine Mother, taught the Truth to the gods. Goddess Shakti thus sheds wisdom on Her devotees.
Devi worship is, therefore, worship of God’s glory, of God’s greatness and supremacy. It is adoration of the Almighty.
Devi is the conscious power of God. Navaratri is the most suitable occasion for doing intense spiritual practices. These nine days are very sacred to the Divine Mother. Plunge yourself in Her worship.

From Hindu Fasts and Festivals by Swami Sivananda

Durga Puja