Announcements and reminders:

Upcoming Events

Connecticut Vedanta Group Meets – Sun. Sept. 23 
Monthly satsang at Vedanta Society of CT located at 100 Cherry Brook Rd, Canton CT from 10:00am – 12:30pm.
Topic: Bhagavad Gita Musings: ‘Creator and Creation’ by Swami Yogatmananda. Program includes short worship; devotional music/singing; and refreshments. All are welcome.

Hatha Yoga Classes – Every Friday, beginning Sept. 14, 5:30-6:30 PM
Fee: $40 — PREPAID For 2 Month Course, $10/Per Class
Contact Vedanta Society by phone or email or contact Roshni Darnal at 401-226-5421

Daylong Retreat – Sat. Oct. 13, 9:30am – 5:00pm (Note the correct time)
– by Swami Chetanananda, Vedanta Society of St. Louis MO
Topic: ‘Stories of Vedanta Monks’
Fee: $30.00; Discounted fee $20 if paid  by Oct. 03 (Fees are non-refundable)
Prior Registration Required; Can be done online or at the Society’s office, or by mail.  For detailed information and online registration:
http://vedantaprov.org/schedule/

Weekly Schedule (in addition to Daily Schedule given below)

Fri. Sept. 21 7:00 PM: Aarati (devotional music) & meditation.  
7:30 – 8:30 PM: Study Class by Swami Yogatmananda, class #2 ‘Svetasvatara Upanishad’ (transl./notes by Swami Tyagisananda)
Sat. Sept. 22 8:30 – 10:30am: Karma Yoga (Cleaning & Work-service)
11:00am – 12:00 noon: Guided Meditation & singing
7:00pm – 8:00pm – Aarati (devotional singing & a short reading) & continued meditation
Sun. Sept. 23 5:00 – 6:00 PM:  Lecture on: ‘Reality and Sur-reality’ by Swami Yogatmananda
Tue. Sept. 25 7:00 PM: Aarati (devotional music) & meditation
7:30 – 8:30 PM:  Study Class – Swami Saradananda’s book – ‘SRI RAMAKRISHNA & HIS DIVINE PLAY’: Sri Ramakrishna As Guru(Tr. Swami Chetanananda)

Daily Schedule

Morning 5:45 – 6:45 AM: Meditation
6:45 – 7:00 AM: Chanting followed by a short reading from The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda
7:00 – 7:25 AM: A short ritual worship/Puja. Open to all.
Evening 7:00 – 7:15 PM: Aarti (devotional music), with a short reading from ‘BOOK OF DAILY THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS’ by Swami Paramananda 
7:15 – 8:00 PM: Meditation. Open to all.

Past Events

Day-long Meditation – Sat. Sept. 15, 12:00noon – 8:00pm 
Nine people participated in this monthly ‘silence-for-the-day’ meditation program.

Just Kids! Time  – Sun. Sept. 16, 4PM – 6PM 
No children came this month. Next ‘Just Kids! program will be Sunday Oct. 07, from 4pm-6pm. All children ages 5 to 12 are welcome.

Classical Vocal Concert – Sun. Sept. 16, 6:15PM – 7:30PM 
A small but appreciative group of about thirty music enthusiasts listened to Pandit Shantanu Bhattacharyya perform classical Indian vocal (ragas), accompanied by Ashis Sengupta on Tabla and Durba Bhattacharyya on Harmonium, from 6:15 pm – 7:30pm.
Photos of this event will be uploaded soon.

On Tues. Sept. 18, at the begining of the study class, Pandit Shantanu Bhattacharyya sang a devotional song, with Ashis Sengupta accompanying on tabla.

Synopses of Past Classes

Friday Study Class: Svetasvatara Upanisad Introduction by Swami Yogatmananda  – Sept. 14
Class # 1: What is an Upanisad? Many of us have heard the word. Upanisads form a comparatively very small, yet major part of the Vedas. The knowledge contained in Vedas is differentiated from science, which is knowledge we obtain from our senses. The body of scientific knowledge is huge and highly-developed, but the world beyond the body and mind is immense. That knowledge, when presented in our language, is called Vedas.
The Vedas are organized into two parts. The first part, about fulfilling various worldly desires, such as praying to certain gods for the well-being of others, is the “work portion.” Many people consider this the most meaningful part of scriptures, because they want to know what to do/not do. The other, smaller (approx. 4%) part of the Vedas is the “knowledge portion”, which comes usually in the end portion of Vedas, is about the fundamental questions about God/Truth/the Self. That is the Upanisads. These scriptures are also called Vedanta (Veda–knowledge, -anta–end or culmination). because, they lead to that knowledge, knowing which, nothing more remains to be known. Knowledge reaches its ultimate limit in them.  These scriptures form the core of Hinduism. The etymology of Unpanisad shows that it is not a book as such, but the wisdom by which one’s bondage is destroyed or loosened, or, at least, the knowledge that helps one move in that direction.

Sunday Talk – Swami Vivekananda in Gujarat by Swami Sarvasthananda – Sept. 16
After Sri Ramakrishna’s passing, Swami Vivekananda wandered throughout India, spending much of his time in Gujarat. His goal was to find out how to best carry out the message of his Guru, to serve God in man. He felt that the masses and women, needed to be educated first, so that an independent India could be successfully run by the people.  When Swami Vivekananda was challenged in India for carrying the Imitation of Christ with him, he convinced Manilal Dvivedi to find parallels in it with Indian scriptures, after which Manilal Dvivedi translated it and listed similarities between the two religions. Swami Vivekananda said that the Imitation of Christ showed him how to have devotion toward his Master. People saw that Swami Vivekananda had a universal message. In Gujarat, Swami Vivekananda made close acquaintance with a number of maharajas, their ministers and scholars of top order. First having the idea to go to the west in Gujarat, Swami Vivekananda summed up his American experience by saying: I have just begun my work; in America I have raised only one or two waves; a tidal wave must be raised, society must be turned upside down; the world must be given a new civilization. As everything Swami Vivekananda predicted came true, such as World War I in Europe, the rise of communism in Russia and China, and Indian freedom in fifty years, he can be regarded as a prophet, and we can look forward to the eventual new civilization.

Tuesday Study Class: Sri Ramakrishna & His Divine Play – Sept. 18
Page # 422 Bhava, Saamadhi and Darshana
When we study the life of an incarnation, it is important to understand the mental attitude in addition to external actions. This is because an incarnation of God acts without any desires and for the good of the world. In Sri Ramakrishna God came in the role of man to guide the spiritual seekers to transform their lives and while His external actions looked pretty ordinary they were driven by His divine mission.
Bhaava is a particular state of mind feeling an intense connection with a particular aspect of God. His external appearance and actions were in perfect correspondence with His mental states. For example Sri Ramakrishna angrily refused a large sum of money that Mathur Babu wanted to give Him because He truly believed that money was detrimental to spiritual well-being.
Kundalini is the storehouse of our experiences that is retained when the body drops off driving the motivations in our next lives. At the lowest level, (base of spine) there is life but no manifestation e.g. in a rock, a little higher at the level of the organ of procreation, it leads to basic ability of the life to procreate, at the level of naval manifests the urge for knowledge, science and art. Further higher up as it reaches the heart it manifests in spiritual quest leading to various spiritual experiences in its way further up, culminating in Samadhi when it reaches the top of the head.