January 27, 2012

Swami Kriyanandas Mumbai Book Launch Of Biography On Paramhansa Yogananda – A Huge Success

                                                                           Swami Kriyananda

January 8th 2012. .The chosen date for Swami Kriyanandas book launch in Mumbai of his Biography on Paramhansa Yogananda, his Guru, at the Jamshed Bhabha Auditorium, was for the Mumbai and Pune team of us devotees,  a challenge of sorts. It was Swami jis first ever public discourse in Mumbai. In the current scenario of ‘brokers’ who in the garb of religiosity peddle their wares with gusto, aggressive marketing, no holds barred publicity campaign, would Swamijis underplayed, unassuming, simple personality reach across to the souls of the real spiritual seekers in Mumbai, ‘the city that never sleeps’? Would it awaken to the call of  Self Realisation and Paramhansas eternal message?  Would Masters earthly representative get the welcome he and our  Gurus deserved?

Swami ji was content in just serving his Guru and devoting himself to spreading his teachings for the past 63 years all over the world, that he often joked ” Ananda is the best kept secret”. But it was so important that the world get to know and hear his message. Not given to histrionics and ‘celebrity endorsing’ antics, we at Ananda believed in following the ideals of our Masters. But would the world so accustomed to screaming averments  understand the integrity behind such ideas? This and other such thoughts clouded our minds. There was nothing we wanted more desperately than to have a packed theatre. Nothing less than this was good enough for Swami ji. Nothing lesser than a resounding welcome by Mumbai for Swami ji was what we were praying for and working towards.

On Hindsight..Such unfounded fears and anxieties. When the Divine has ordained and has willed Swami ji to represent him, only stupendous victory can happen and will happen! Those whose hearts were open to the call of Paramhansa, responded.

What a huge success it turned out to be! It was as if the vision emblazed on or minds had taken fruition, with nigh an absence of detail. The hall was packed to capacity,.. with a spill over.. A huge television screen was placed outside the auditorium in the lobby, to enable viewing of the event for those who weren’t lucky enough to get a seat inside.

Mumbai had welcomed Swami Ji with arms wide open.

                                             The Biography of Paramhansa Yogananda By Swami Kriyananda

A Must read for all Paramhansa lovers..hitherto unknown facts

revealed for the first time. His miracles, divinity and simplicity.

Yours truly along with Mr Narayan Swamy , a journalist devotee who had come down from Delhi just to help out with the event, were in charge of  one of the book tables. Strategically placed right opposite the entrance , we were filled with enthusiasm and gratitude to see the crowds come in on a Sunday evening , expectant, ready for the experience of a lifetime.

Even before the event could begin, crowds thronged our table. (more…)

February 28, 2011

Ananda Sangha – Paramhansa Yogananda’s Gift Of Paradise On Earth

Sri Sri Paramhansa Yogananda


As unsurmountable a task as it is to assimilate the ocean in a bowl, is this my effort to encapsulate the Love of Paramhansa Yogananda and Swami Kriyananda and their effort to better our world through Kriya Yoga and Ananda Sangha . May Master help me and guide me through.

Ananda – meaning Bliss, the will o’ the wisp longing that is ever eluding yet ever inviting. We live our lives in the eternal quest of happiness, delusionally believing it to sprout forth from the gardens of worldly pleasure without realising that it is not transient, deceptive happiness but  Bliss that the soul longs for. That ever lasting Bliss which was once rightfully ours but has been masked behind the layers of dark desires, never-ending and never gratifying either.

Decades after decades millennium after millennium we hapless souls trudge through this vortex of the world, which with its steely grip keeps us earth-bound while Satan smiles at having won each time in deluding us into believing  in the reality of  our existence with its saga of joys and sorrows, pain and pleasures , all the time ensnaring us in this duality.

We periodically want out, long for this crushing excruciating existence with transient and ephemeral promises of joy, that traps us , to vanish. Yet, all it takes is just a peek of another desire within reach and what vanishes instead, is this hitherto urgent need to free ourselves, now relegated into oblivion.

Yet there comes a time in the life of each one, when the veil lifts. The drama is revealed. The lack luster world is shorn thread bare once and for all, in the glorious, illuminating, divine  light of the Almighty,  gently waking us from this dream.  Soon we realise the folly of having lived birth after birth pursuing that which does not exist.

My quest for Truth and the mystery of my existence began in the eighties.


September 30, 2008

Navratris Are Here’

Update 4th October 2008: Ashtami is on 7th Oct. This is the day of “KANJAK” when 1,or 3,5,7,9 little girls are fed with halwa, puri, kaala channa, potato curry and boondi raita, along with either a chunri or cash. Symbolic of the nine av tars of Mata Durga, we worship the girls by washing their feet, tying a mauli around their wrists and they in turn apply tikka to the head of the family and tie a mauli around his wrist.

Cannot control some morbid thoughts that overtake my senses. Its all very well to worship your own daughters or those of others, even a servants child, on a festival such as this all in the pious (?) hope of winning over Mata Lakshmi and invoking her blessings. But the other 364 days of the year are spent either aborting a female child or burning brides or selling ones daughters into prostitution. What a bunch of criminal hypocrites we Indians can be…!!! Okay.. I am done now with my rant.

Its time again..One of my favourite festivals Navratri or nine(nav) nights (ratri) spent in propitiation, music and dance,commences today. “Mother” as Goddess in the form of Durga, Lakshmi and Saraswati, is worshipped as the primal source of energy. Colour, revelry and festivity take on a tint unparalleled with any other Indian festival .

“Durga Puja’ in Bengal , corresponds with Navratri elsewhere. Ma Durga is worshipped for nine days, and immersed on the tenth, after having, as legend goes, vanquished the demons or ‘rakshasas’. Perhaps this is meant to subtly advise us to conquer the demons of anger, jealousy, pride, greed and seek Mother Durgas help in doing so.

“Garba” or “raas” as dance forms are pre-dominantly Gujarat centric. However, now that Navratri has grown to become one of the most awaited festivals nationally, garba and raas too have joined the ranks of popular dance forms, as Bhangra.

Just how innovative were our ancestors can be gaged when analysing the origins of ‘garba’.


“A “GARBO” is an earthen pot with holes all around and “Light” within which signifies (more…)

July 7, 2008

The Yogi Who Has Not Eaten For 70 Years

Prahlad Jani who prefers to a called ‘Mataji’..notice the red sindoor in his hair parting, tikka, ornaments and red clothes,

Watched awestruck the unfolding of a story on IBN live yesterday that informed about the presence of a Yogi in Gujarat ,  Prahlad Jani, who claims to have not eaten a morsel of food or drunk a sip of water since the last 70 years.

It came as no surprise though. Mention of such ‘miracle men’ in the ‘Autobiography Of A Yogi” helped. (more…)

September 27, 2007

Shraadha – Begins Today

Filed under: India n Me,opinions,Our Festivals,Random,Relationships,spiritual wisdom — Kaveeta Oberoi Kaul @ 10:57 am

Update 2008..Here

The 15 day long rituals in worship of our ancestors Shraadha or ‘Pitrapaksh’ begins today-ending on 11th October. This is a good time to feed at least one hungry person and the birds some rice and milk. Too many Why’s, What’,what for’s are not really necessary. All the same if answers are sought a little reading on the subject will help. In any case lovingly feeding hungry souls can never be a bad idea nor can worshipful remembrance of ancestors.

It is recommended that new ventures , new purchases not be made during this period. You will notice the decrease in number of releases of Bollywood films or for that matter announcements/mahurats for new ones. Perhaps those who most strictly adhere to this rule is our Bollywood fraternity. ‘Why risk it’ perhaps their inner dialogue. For non believers this is simply meant to be time of the year when we should concentrate our energies and prayers for those departed souls who have played a role in our life. Our karma here may help them forward in their journey. Its the spirit world, proof of its prevalence surrounds us if we only care to notice. We take the prevalence of the remote and its functions for granted , yet are hugely skeptical of Indian rituals. .isnt the underlying principle similar?

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