Sat, Feb 13 – Swami Brahmananda’s Birthday. A special chant n the morning and the birthday song and Bio-readings in the evening.
Sat, Feb 13 – Day-long meditation: Noon to 8:00 pm. One must enter between 11:45am -noon. The doors will close at noon. One should be bringing one’s lunch. Tea/coffee some snacks will be available.
Mon, Feb 15 Swami Trigunatitananda’s Birthday. A special chant n the morning and the birthday song and Bio-readings in the evening.
All lectures/classes will continue to be available LIVE and stored on our Youtube Channel (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFof5116HcBYIpUFvKet1Uw) too.
Entrance door remains open for limited times as follows:
- Tue & Fri lectures: 6:45 – 7:35 pm
- Sun services: 4:45 – 5:05 pm
- Morning meditation : 5:45 – 5:55 am
- Evening meditation: 6:45 – 7:15 pm
Weekly Schedule (in addition to Daily Schedule given below)
|Fri. Feb 12||7:00 – 8:45 pm: Arati, Meditation and A Study Class on ‘Stories from Srimad Bhagavatam’ by Swami Yogatmananda
|Sun. Feb 14||5:00-6:30 pm: Lecture on ‘CHANGE OF GUARD’ by Swami Yogatmananda|
|Tue. Feb 16||7:00 – 8:45 pm: Arati, meditation and A Study Class on ‘Sri Ramakrishna and His Divine Play’ by Swami Yogatmananda|
|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, but one must enter before 5:55 am
|Evening||(Except on Sundays)
7:00 – 7:15 PM: Aarti (devotional music), with a short reading from ‘Uniqueness of Sri Ramakrishna’ by Swami Bhuteshananda
7:15 – 8:00 PM: Meditation. Open to all, but one must enter before 7:10 am
Swami gave a talk on ‘Vedanta and Harmony of Religions’ on Sun 1/31/21, noon to 1:15pm on the zoom platform. It was mainly for the devotees belonging to an international group. Many regular devotees joined too.
Synopses of Past Classes
(All classes given by Swami Yogatmananda)
Friday, Feb. 05 – Stories from Srimad Bhagavatam
Class 42: Story of Hiranyaksha
After hearing about the Lord’s incarnation as Varaha (the boar who lifted the Earth out of the cosmic ocean after slaying Hiranyaksha), Vidura requested Maitreya to further explain why the brothers Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakshipu became so inimical to God. Their mother, Diti, became overwhelmed with the desire for progeny and rushed to her husband at an inappropriate time. Consequently, her progeny were demonic. Diti immediately felt remorseful, and her saintly husband Kashyapa assured her that though her children would be demonical, her grandson (Prahlad) would be a great devotee of the Lord. Now Maitreya related the story of the four sages – Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatana, and Sanatkumara who travelled to Vishnu’s abode ‘Vaikuntha’. The source of Vaikuntha’s beauty was the source of all beauty, that is the presence of the Lord himself. The four sages were able to walk through the first six gates of Vishnu’s abode with no problem, but when they approached the seventh gate, they were obstructed by Jaya and Vijaya (Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakshipu in a previous incarnation). Jaya and Vijaya had developed arrogance because of their nearness to Vishnu. Their arrogance and egoism is a caution to all of us. Yes, we are servants of God, but let arrogance not touch us. The sages disciplined Jaya and Vijaya by throwing them down from the exalted place of Vaikuntha. The Lord then appeared before the four sages. With immense joy the sages offered their praise to Vishnu.
Sunday, Feb. 07 – Symposium on Swami Vivekananda on the occasion of his birthday celebration
The opening song was Svadesa Videsa Uchali Uthiche, composed by Swami Abhedananda, and performed by Pranav (harmonium), Vittal (violin), Tushar (tabla), and Abhijit and Ujjwal (vocals).
Prof. Jyoti Champanerkar spoke on Swami Vivekananda and Fearlessness. Swami Vivekananda emphasized that he was not a missionary. He quoted from Bhartrihari that renunciation alone leads to fearlessness. If anything is a sin, it is fear. He considered fearlessness to be the whole message of the Gita. Oneness alone is fearlessness. There is no fear in true love. Coming back from the west, Swami Vivekananda said that strength is the one great lesson to be learned. Only in the Hindu scriptures God is called FEARLESS. He added that fear is the cause of the miseries in the world, and it is the greatest of superstitions. The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna says that we attain fearlessness through the grace of God and the Guru, by faith, devotion, and spiritual practice.
Prithwish Basu spoke on Science and Vivekananda. Science can be defined as a classification of facts that is objective and precise. This implies physical science, which deals with the five senses, or the tangible world. A scientific revolution started in the Renaissance. Swami Vivekananda appeared at the peak of classical science. Physical science increases survival and comforts but desires multiply. Science increases sense gratification, and its misuse is destroying our environment. Swami Vivekananda saw the relativity of time and space before Einstein. He said that evolution is not the survival of the fittest, but it is humanity wanting to become perfect.
Chester Boncek: Quoting extensively from ‘The Song of Sannyasin’ – Swami Vivekananda’s famous poem, he showed that the four signs of awakening are in Swami Vivekananda’s descriptions of the four yogas. The web that we find ourselves in prevents us from realizing the One Existence. The Gita says that lust for power, fame and money compel us to do things despite ourselves. Swami Vivekananda said that we need to strike off all fetters, because even fetters of gold bind us. He said that each soul is potentially divine. Success in spiritual life is the manifestation of the divinity within us.
The program ended with the singing of the Shivanam Sankirtan.
Tuesday, Feb 09 – Sri Ramakrishna and His Divine Play
Volume 4, Chapter 2, Page #589 – 591 : Sri Ramakrishna as a Guru, and Sadhus of Various Orders
Sri Ramakrishna’s ecstatic condition was a result of His extraordinary awareness; but was considered as some disorder which needed medical treatment. It was difficult for people to perceive Sri Ramakrishna’s divine consciousness behind that external behavior. Even Mathur Babu, who observed Sri Ramakrishna so closely, considered that in spite of having great devotion he had a disease too. Many psychologists even in modern times presented Master’s condition as a result of suppression of desires.
Shivanath Shastri , a preacher of Sadharan Brahmo Samaj, who used to visit the Master, considered that Master’s bhava samadhi was a result of nervous disorder. The Master countered this idea by saying how a person who always thinks about consciousness, can become unconscious?
Some blessed spiritual aspirants came to Sri Ramakrishna, understood His divine awareness and received initiation from Him. One of such blessed individuals was Narayan Shastri. He devoted his life to the study of scriptures. In the company of Sri Ramakrishna, he realized that this world is not real and developed renunciation as a result of discernment. In the company of Sri Ramakrishna his quest for knowledge was fulfilled completely.