I was given the unique experience of seeing Swami Vidyadhishananda Giri give a Mahashivratri discourse today via live feed. It was unique in that he is a master, a Swami of Himalayan order, but currently in the U.S., though he does not allow his discourses to be recorded and distributed.
Also, this is special to me as Swamiji is a spiritual descendent of Sri Yukteswar Giri, the guru of Paramahansa Yogananda.
It was my privilege to see Swamiji deliver a talk on Mahashivratri and it’s association with Shiva “Lord of Yogis”. Swamiji eloquently and profoundly explained why this festival is traditionally celebrated at night, as this is the most auspicious time for meditation, when the world is quiet. Swamiji also spoke on the relationship between the spiritual aspirant and guru.
At the close of his talk, though his remarks encouraged a deep, profound meditation for this evening, he also encouraged all devotees to celebrate the festival “as you are able.” This was notable to me, as I appreciate very much the concept of the search for God being likened to a trek up the Himilayas, and all seekers approach the mountain from a different angle, though the goal is the same.