Still in the funk from last week, although it appears to be chemical in nature, so that’s sort of comforting (i.e. it will end eventually, without me doing anything). I’ve been running myself ragged and am tired, so it’s hard to be positive at the moment. I apologize in advance for any “Debbie Downer” attitude in my blog posts. Believe me when I say that it’s sheer physical weariness.
Anyway. I logged onto my Google Reader this morning and saw Gori Rajkumari’s post announcing the Marathi Hindu New Year, and realized that I’m possibly missing celebrating another holiday. In reality, I have no idea how to celebrate. I feel blindsided by Hindu holidays a lot of the time, because unlike Christian holidays, they’re not celebrated by a majority population in the U.S., and I haven’t celebrated most of them before. I miss a lot. Sometimes it’s also difficult to figure out which are universal Hindu holidays and which are more regional in nature. This one, thankfully, is a regional sort of holiday (or so the oracle of the Internet, Wikipedia, tells me), but I’m sure I’ll miss some more before the year is out.
I have to remind myself not to stress about it, especially since the greatest benefit that has come from practicing Hinduism is a marked decrease in my daily stress level, and getting stressed out about Hindu practice feels counterproductive. I will write the dates of the holidays I miss in my calendar and do my best to celebrate next year. At the moment, I’m trying to work out how to observe Ram Navami, what with my obligations to the local SCA (historical reenactment) group. I am also working out how not to feel guilty if I don’t manage to work it out. Or how not to feel guilty for simply observing it at home.
I mean, isn’t that the whole point of this path? Guilt isn’t really something productive. It keeps you anchored in the past, instead of helping you move forward. I imagine this is part of the detachment we’re working to achieve, which is to say that although things may not have worked out the way you had intended, you move forward with renewed enthusiasm, equipped with the knowledge you gained on your failed attempt. So if I miss a holiday while I’m learning, it’s not the end of the world. It will happen again next year.
(Random aside: there are these weird, mostly offensive advertisements for cash-cow “evangelist” Creflow Dollar on the MARTA trains in Atlanta. On one of the trains we took this weekend, someone had flipped the ads around to the blank side and written in Hindu/Buddhist philosophy in Sharpie marker. It made me smile.)