Guru Purnima, the day dedicated to the Guru, was celebrated on July 27 this year. It is a tradition in India for all the disciples to express their gratitude to the Guru on this sacred occasion. On this day, YSS devotees in Kolkata participated in a special programme which included a public talk by Swami Suddhanandaji at Kala Mandir hall in Kolkata. Before the beginning of the program at Kala Mandir Swami Suddhanandaji formally inaugurated YSS Information Center at Theatre Road situated just opposite to Kalamandir Auditorium.
The auditorium located in Shakespeare Sarani Road was charged with the energy of Yogoda volunteers who were present since early morning to pay homage to our beloved Gurudeva Sri Sri Paramahansa Yogananda on this auspicious occasion.
An artful floral decoration adorned the altar with pictures of YSS paramgurus and Gurudeva on the stage. Peaceful vibrations akin to those felt in Paramahansa Yoganandaji’s ashrams were felt by those who arrived for the programme as they were ushered by volunteers to their seats.
Swami Amaranandaji opened the programme with soul-stirring bhajans, accompanied by YSS devotee Sri Prasun Chatterjee on the tabla. Along with the bhajans, Guruji’s Cosmic Chants ‘Who is in my temple’ and ‘I have made Thee polestar of my life’ were also sung with deep devotion.
Following the chanting, the audience was led into a period of group meditation. Later, an appeal for donations was made for the new printing press and binding unit at YSS Ranchi Ashram for printing of new YSS lessons due later this year. This was followed by a satsanga by Swami Suddhanandaji.
In his public talk, Swamiji spoke on the importance of Guru Purnima in which he dwelt on why we should honour the Guru:
To answer this question, we have to ask: What is the purpose of life? From the books Science of Religion, The Holy science and the Autobiography of a Yogi, we get a clear conception of the purpose of life.
Swami Sri Yukteswarji clarifies why does man suffer: as long as man identifies himself with his material body and fails to find repose in his true Self, he feels his wants according to his heart’s desires remain unsatisfied. To satisfy them, he has to appear often in flesh and blood on the stage of life subject to the influence of the darkness of Maya and has to suffer all the troubles of life and death not only in the present but in the future as well. We cannot escape from this point because we are identified with the body.
Guruji said, Truth is one, but there is a desire to play. The waves of the ocean were playing with each other. One wave playing by itself saw the brother waves crashing into the beach. The wave became depressed. Seeing the depressed wave, a brother wave said: Enjoy separate existence for a while; but remember your connection with the ocean, and thus enjoy life.
God has created all of us with uniqueness. The real purpose of life is to bring out this uniqueness without losing sight of God: the big Self (Autobiography of a Yogi, Last ch. Pg. 476-477); we can never find fulfilment in the little self; We are born in God; We exist in God and we finally dissolve in God.
Sri Yukteswarji says in The Holy Science: “The five types of obstacles created by God are: Ignorance, Egotism, Attachment, Aversion and Tenacity to the material creation.”
Man should think I am a part of the Universal Self; I have been sent to play for a while. After several cycles of birth and death, the soul cries: “What is the real purpose of life?”
Mrinalini Mataji has described it beautifully in the ‘How to Live’ booklet on ‘The Guru Disciple Relationship’:
“God helps us according to the degree of our yearning for Him. In the beginning, we practice japa, rituals, read books; but we are still not fully satisfied and we ask-What is my connection with God? Is there a divine plan? When there is a deep yearning within, God sends a Sadhguru. When the disciple is ready, the guru appears. Thus, God draws the disciple back to him through the spiritual law. We have to start looking inside, the more we are interiorised, the more peaceful we become.”
Anuloma Paddhati takes us within whereas Viloma Paddhati takes us outwards.
Test of Spiritual progress: if we are more peaceful, understanding, kind, we are progressing; If we are becoming more gossipy and finicky we are going backwards.
In the last lap of the human race, we go home. Some are running towards the Goal, others are moving slowly and some are moving backwards. Guruji said-We have to become Race horses. At the feet of a Sadhguru, we come into the Fast track.
Thoughts from SRF President Swami Chidanandaji’s message for Guru Purnima:
“Guru Purnima is to honour the Guru. It is a great blessing to have a Sadhguru, who is the best of all givers. A philosopher’s stone can change iron into gold, but not into another philosopher’s stone. The guru on the other hand, elevates the disciple to his own level, making him a Son of God.”
He (Amritasya Putra) releases us from suffering.
1) Guruji has given us the sacred, scientific techniques of Kriya Yoga, which we must practice faithfully.(It is not enough to become a lesson member , bind the lessons and place them on the book shelf).
Guruji said: Sitting in silence will get you nowhere. Scientific techniques are given to interiorize the energy. The body should obey the mind and the mind should obey the soul.
Follow the Sadhguru faithfully to get freedom, following him, with” Shraddha” the heart’s love intensified”(Holy Science). Guru is the dispeller of darkness. ( prayer: asato ma sadgamaya…)
One saint said: Know this truth now or in a thousand incarnations.
God has given us free choice. If we choose to suffer, God cannot help us.
2) His divinely inspired writings and the scripture of his life are the wisdom trough which he shows us how to be in harmony with God’s principles of Love and Truth. Autobiography of a Yogi is a scripture and a life-transforming book. “God is Love; His plan for creation can be rooted only in love.”(AY last chapter)This thought, instead of erudite reasonings gives comfort to the human heart.
Guruji’s promise- I will never fail you; only a Sadguru can give such an assurance. Maya tricks us into believing that we have no contact with God.
There are so many stories from devotees around the world telling us how Guruji helps us in moments of crisis.
Swamiji narrated from Autobiography of a Yogi (chap. 34) how in Moradabad , Babaji told LahiriMahasaya – “I will come only when you need me, not necessarily when you want me.” Thus when LahiriMahasaya was in Kumbh Mela in Allahabad, he saw Babaji washing the feet of a sadhu. In this way Babaji was learning humility, the virtue most dear to God.
Story of a woman devotee, who lost her son in an accident; later on she realized that It was Guruji who ushered her son to the other side. Guruji’s love is beyond comprehension.
3) We have to do our part; we have to prepare ourselves by attuning with Guruji. On this sacred day, let us rededicate ourselves to God and Guru and follow the path of the Great Ones. As our trust in Guru’s love grows we find impatience and self-will falling away from us, allowing Guruji to wipe out our karma.
From AY: Swami Kebalananda narrates an incident in which Babaji places a burning stick on a chela’s shoulder, to help him work out his karma.
Have faith in Guruji and think- I am following Guruji, he is protecting me. Guruji sees the real you, the Atman ( the perfect Soul); he has faith in us, we need to have faith in ourselves. Why should I be afraid? If I’ve made a mistake I will go to Guruji. By surrendering to Guru, we enable the Guru to help us towards liberation. On this occasion we should make up our minds to follow Guruji’s sacred teachings, more faithfully and regularly. God does not allow us to make excuses to forget Him.. The only place we can escape is, go “inside”, go “within”; relax from body consciousness and mental restlessness. Read the poem Samadhi (AY Ch-14) again and again.
Swamiji narrated young Mukunda’s meeting with Master Mahasaya from the Autobiography of a Yogi where Divine Mother appeared before Mukunda and said,“Always have I loved thee, ever shall I love thee.” The whole creation is based on love. Divine love is the only reality.
After the satsanga, prizes were distributed to West Bengal YSS school students.
Brahmachari Achyutanandaji spoke of the charitable activities of YSS. He shared with the audience that medical camps are carried out by YSS in the backward regions of Jharkhand and rural West Bengal. He added that a total of 14 educational institutions including nine secondary schools, one college, one junior basic school and three coaching centres are run by YSS in West Bengal.
Brahmachariji said that these charitable works of the spiritual organisation founded by Gurudeva were inspired from two key points that we had received from Yoganandaji – one, spiritual sadhana and the other, unselfishly reaching out to others.
On the occasion of Guru Purnima, YSS members serving as educational volunteers of the schools in Palpara, Bherir Bazar, Lakhanpur, Ismalichak and Ghatal (in West Bengal) were felicitated. Awards for academic excellence were given to the top-scorers in Madhyamik and Higher secondary examinations. Awards were also given to the two best YSS schools of West Bengal (in Bherir Bazar and Lakhanpur) on the basis of their perfomances in recently concluded West Bengal Board Secondary and Higher Secondary Examinations. A cash award of INR 20,000 and Guruji’s books were given to Kumari Poumita Barui, a student of St Xavier’s Institutiona who is daughter of one of our ashram employees for her outstanding performance in last Indian Certification of Secondary Education (ICSE), 2018.
Devotees and guests offered pushpanjali and received prasad at the end of the programme.