Amma’s Letter:  September 3rd, 2007

Divine Yoga Family!                                                                                       

Nishpanda!  Blissful Nishpanda!  Letting go... letting go...  letting go of tension!  Lying on one’s back on a mildly sunny day, cool breezes flowing over and around, chewing a blade of grass, gazing at the blue sky!  What a luxury to have nothing too important or urgent to do.  Reading the newspaper with a cup of coffee, driving the scooter slowly along the Marina gazing at the vast expanses of the Bay of Bengal!  There is a little space of free time right now between an almost frenetic summer and the intense Yoga Sadhana to commence October 2nd.  And it is glorious - to do nothing!  Well!  Practically nothing, comparatively speaking!  Our daily routine life of course is busy enough and goes on at its own pace.  But the intensity of the additional events of the summer has receded and it s quite glorious to feel there are actually a few days in the week where one can take it a bit easy.  Spanda - Nishpanda.  Effort and release of effort!  Life becomes an Asana a state of being as described by the great Patanjali.  Make the effort then, release that effort!  That is the art of Yogic living, surfing Samskara.  It used to be that I looked forward to summer as a relaxation from the intense Sadhana of the six month course.  But it has slowly become the opposite - I now look forward to the six month course!  Our involvement in the City Centre has grown along with our degree of local commitments.  We now have more than 500 students on our rolls and every month of the summer some great activity is held.  May is the Yoga/Dance Intensive with daily classes of four hours each in Dance/Yoga for the kids who are on vacation.  June is preparation for Annual Day and putting 300 kids on stage.  July is preparing for the Annual Dance Drama.  Then there are the many other events in between - programmes and classes and functions.  This year we had the additional projects associated with the launch of the 100th Jayanthi Year Celebration 2007-2008.  YOGA LIFE is giving full reports on all these events with photos so you can enjoy them with us.  With Guru’s grace, everything was highly successful.  And a great sense of inner bliss was our reward, as well as comments such as Jeremy Dixon’s of England.  “I have enjoyed every second of my one month stay.  Literally!”  There has been along with the work and all the juggling which it entailed, a very real, tangible sense of true enjoyment!  It has been a case when the good was also pleasant.  The Kathopanished states:  “Do not mistake the good for the pleasant.  For the pleasant is often not good, and the good often is not pleasant.”

But I have found as one matures spiritually, that through skillful living (Yoga) one can (Bhagavad Gita - Yoga is Skill in Action) avoid miseries which have not yet come (Yoga Sutra V 16, Ch. II)  Then, the good metamorphizes into the pleasant!  It becomes pleasant to:  be good, do good, think good.  This is what happened to us this summer.  Especially in regard to the Centenary Seminar August 15th / 22nd.  That feeling of pleasant goodness was relished by all.  Now it is pleasantly good to relax, rest a bit more, reflect a little, do a little of this, a little of that in a more leisurely way.

Of course ongoing projects are at hand.  The first volume of History of Yoga is ready for its final editing.  Ananda’s application for his Italian and Swiss visas are in the post.  He will be an invited guest presenter at the Milan Yoga Festival Oct 19-21.  Those of you who would like to meet him there and participate in the great gathering can contact Sabrina who has done an excellent job at getting all groundwork done.  He will be hosted by the Gitananda Yoga Society in Berlin from 25-27 and will also do programmes with Hariharan in Loarno, Switzerland from 22-24.  I would deeply encourage all who are able to meet up with Ananda during his two-week sojourn in Europe.

Little Anandraj turns two years old on September 5th.  Since my birthday is on September 13, we are combining celebrations with a small dinner party, at Annamalai hotel, which is Pondy’s version of a Disneyland-like hotel - many of you know that hotel as we usually hold our Valedictory Functions of the Six Month course there. We will hold a homa on September 12th as that is his star birthday (Nakshetra)  so the homa will be for both of us.  It will also be a sort of farewell homa for Shobana (Magda) of Czech Republic who has been with us for one year doing her One Year Teacher’s Training Diploma Course.  She has had opportunity for a lot of guided teaching experience as well as many important functions. Her year has been well spent and she has been an asset to us and a great help in all ways.  She has matured into a fine teacher.

We did quite bit of clean up, painting work for the Centenary Seminar, but a few more things remain to be done for the six month course beginning on October 2nd.  The Centenary Activities will go on all year.  We wish to make the Annual Yantra Course this year an especially grand one.  This will be held as usual February 4 to 18, 2008.  We will hold several other special events during the Yantra Course this year and extend a special invitation to those of you who may have missed the Centenary Seminar to come together with us during that time.  We will term it the Centenary Jayanthi Yantra Course and make it a grand time for Sadhana.  I am sure the magic will hold throughout the year.  If you can manage it, please come and join us.

Dr. Ananda has just returned from Delhi where he spent three days drawing up the much needed National Syllabus for Yoga Teachers for the Union Ministry of Health.  The last week he has begun shooting for his latest DVD “Yoga and Chakras”.  He is becoming an expert Film Maker / Director and has quite a list of DVD’s to his credit.  Yesterday The Hindu national newspaper gave a half page spread to his work in this field.  He does love to do this and he has a good team together.  He is getting good opportunity to develop all his talents.  Dr. Nalini is here with us giving such good support and strength.  Aishwariya of Canada, graduate of 1999-2000 batch, is here for her second six months and with Shobana, I have had excellent backup this summer.  They also have enjoyed the different pace of life in the Ashram in summer months.

The children grow so beautifully.  What a great glory they are.  We are blessed by Swamiji every second of the day, every step on the way.  How fortunate we are!  The Universe is great!  Glorious!  Good!  What a mystery!  What a magic!  Who can find it out!  Only God knows what this never  ceasing current of Maya means, as people, objects, events, thoughts, feelings, bodies tumble through space and time as though carried on the current of a fast moving river.  Who knows the meaning of all this!  As the Upanishadic seer noted wryly, “Only God knows! And, perhaps, even He Knows Not!”  Love and Pranams and Bliss!  To you all!  Each and every one!

Affectionately yours in Yoga,


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