What To Expect at the Puja

If you've never taken part in this practice before, here's what you can expect.

When you arrive, you'll find the Lingam set up on a small altar in the middle of a large circle of brushwood. You'll be formally welcomed at the entrance to the circle and invited to ring a bell at the altar to announce your presence. Please respect the entrance, and don't step in and out at other points of the circle. Please treat the inside of the circle as sacred space, an image of the Divine Feminine present in the world, in our sisters, and in ourselves.There's no need to be solemn, just respectful. Please leave bags outside the circle: bring in only yourself. 

When we've gathered, someone will invoke the Divine by a list of names of mother goddess and of phallic god drawn from different world traditions. You can add to these invocations names that are personally important to you. 

As a central piece of the ritual, we stand around the Lingam and speak our intentions and/or prayers for the practice. When the first man to do this has finished, the leader ties a red thread around his wrist and repeats that man's words, bearing witness and binding his intention to him. The man who has finished speaking performs the same service for the next man to speak, and so on until everyone has been moved to speak.

So it's a big part of this spiritual practice to listen attentively. It's also a big part of the practice to be forgiving if the man who's bearing witness to you forgets some of what you've said, and you have to coach him gently in what he's to repeat. 

A small flame will be passed hand to hand around the circle. When it's passed to you, you're invited to name into the circle those you're holding in your heart. 

We then engage in a walking meditation around the Lingam. You can walk at your own pace, or stay in one place, or come forward to make an individual act of reverence to the Lingam. You might be surprised to experience how powerful it can be to embrace a two-foot Phallus in a natural setting, in the presence of a circle of brothers. 

At the end of the meditation the leader rings a bell. Everyone gathers around the altar in a group embrace, and we "tone" until we're moved to let the sound die away.

Someone will read a short final meditation, and the leader will invite everyone to go forth. 

If you're familiar with Hindu ritual, you'll recognize borrowed elements of our practice. But we don't claim that what we do is a Hindu ritual and don't intend to give the impression that it is. To begin with, the Hindu lingam is an abstract cylinder; ours is an anatomically accurate sculpture of a man's cock. You may also recognize elements from other ritual traditions. Our practice is eclectic and non-sectarian. You might choose to think of it as a spiritual version of radical drag. We found something really pretty in Auntie's closet. Auntie may not be thrilled with what we've done with her Dior evening gown. But we know we look fabulous in it.

1 comment:

  1. Hello
    My name is Jorge. I'm a Cuban living in NYC since the last year. I don't speak English well, but I can understand when I read. I do yoga meditation for more of 30 year, and I know about hinduism, but I have never been in a Lingam ritual. I would like to participate in the next.