Swami Travels to Queens, NY, Sat Sept 28 and from there to Vedanta Society of NY: He will give a retreat at a hall in Queens 4:30-8:30, then spend the night at the Vedanta Society of New York; will give a lecture on ‘I Love You’ on Sun, Sept 29 and will be back in time to give the Sun service lecture in Providence.
Swami Akhandananda Birth-day, Sat Sept 28: Will be observed by the Disciple-chant in the morning, and birth-day song and bio-reading after the evening Arati.
Durga Puja: Sat Oct 05; 11 am to 7 pm. There will be Puja ritual, flower-offering by devotees, devotional music, Prasad-lunch, video, dance on Mother Durga.
Daylong Spiritual Retreat: Saturday, Oct 19, 9:30 am to 7:00 pm.
Swami Ishadhyanananda from Vedanta Society, Sacramento, CA will give classes on 2nd Chapter of Bhagavad Gita. Prior registration required. Registration can be done by email, mail or in person in the book-store. Reg fee $30 ($20 if paid on or before Sat Oct 12).
Click here for Online Registration and more information.
Weekly Schedule (in addition to Daily Schedule given below)
|Fri. Sept. 27||7:00 PM: Aarati (devotional music) & meditation.
7:30 – 8:30 PM: Study class on ‘Svetasvatara Upanishad’, conducted by Swami Yogatmananda
|Sat. Sept. 28||8:30 – 10:30am: Karma Yoga (Cleaning & Work-service)
11:00am – 12:00 noon: Guided Meditation & prayers
|Sun. Sept. 29||5:00-6:00 pm: Prayers and talk on ‘Universal Consciousness’ by Swami Yogatmananda, followed by q-a, Arati, soup supper..|
|Tue. Oct. 01||7:00 PM: Aarati (devotional music) & meditation
7:30 – 8:30 PM:Study Class on Sri Ramakrishna and His Divine Play
|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 7 am
|Evening||(Except on Sundays)
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.
Daylong-Meditation, Sat Sep 21: 6 were present.
Swami’s visit to Princeton, NJ and Canton, CT Sept 21-22: Swami left for Princeton, NJ on Sat, Sept 21 after the guided meditation and prayers at Providence. Gave a lecture there at a devotee-home on ‘Rational Thinking and Irrational Behavior’ from 6-8 pm; went to spend night at another devotee-home in NJ, came to Canton, CT to give the monthly Satsang of the Vedanta Society of CT and then drove to Providence for the Sunday service lecture.
Swami at the Salve Regina University in Newport, RI: Mon, Sept 23. Swami spoke to two classes of ‘World Religions’ about the basics of Hindu thought, specially dealing with the gender/sexuality issues.
Swami Abhedananda Birthday, Mon Sept 23: Was observed with a special chant at the morning prayers; the special birthday song and short bio-reading in the evening.
Synopses of Past Classes
(All classes given by Swami Yogatmananda, unless otherwise stated)
Friday, Sept 20 – Study Class on Svetasvatara Upanisad
Class 38, Ch 5, Verses 1-4:
The source of all is Divine. We should mold our lives accordingly, but this takes time. None of us is fully worldly or fully spiritual; as spiritual aspirants, we all have both of these elements. It requires a great deal of mental effort to change the direction of our lives and aim our efforts towards God-, and Self-, realization. All the qualities of God, His creative power, exist in each speck of dust, and, thus, in each of us. We feel that the thoughts inside our heads are entirely separate from those of others’, but God is the source and substance in all of them. In time, our true nature is revealed. God is our true nature; the eventual manifestation of this nature is a given. We are pre-programmed to evolve. Being rooted in faith in our eventual evolution is a way to feel God’s presence in us.
Sunday Service, Sept 22 – Accepting the Truth
The opening song was This Little Light of Mine, sung by Peter Travisano.
Truth is the highest value in life, whether we are religious or not. Truth is instilled in us before we were born and does not come from our family or from society. Truth is not affected by whether we accept it or not. We do not accept Truth in the heart because we are loath to give up our attachments. Or it can be accepted by the head and the heart, but not in our behavior. Due to tamas, we have lethargy, and postpone the necessary actions. We need to let our thoughts become feelings in our heart. We need to make an alignment so that our feelings follow our thinking. The Bhagavad Gita points out that one can get confused about what is true and what is not, and one can get deluded about the nature of the Truth. It requires karma yoga, working in the spirit of the Truth, for our behavior to catch up. Karma Yoga makes us feel that the Truth is practical. Narendra, the intellectual par excellence, had tears in his eyes when he beheld Gopaler Ma’s (Aghormani Devi) simple devotional experience of the baby Krishna. When the heart is filled with Truth, one can bypass the head. Every single work done with the background that the Lord is everywhere can be karma yoga. We have irrational fears of losing something, and action makes us get rid of such fears. With fear, we subject ourselves to harassment. When we are afraid, we can take the name.
Tuesday, Sept 24 – Study Class on Sri Ramakrishna and His Divine Play
Manifestations of Power as a Guru Page 462-464
God-realization is the ONLY goal of human life.The life of Sri Ramakrishna exemplified this idea. He practiced and taught this ideal from the very early age of his life.
Sri Ramakrishna manifested the qualities of teacher when he was a young boy. He guided the gathering of scholars towards a simple and satisfying solution to their problem when he was merely nine or ten years old.
A commonly asked question about Sri Ramakrishna is why did he marry? There were no desires in him nor he had any intention of enjoying conjugal relationship. He did not marry succumbing to the parental pressure. He was a man of firm resolve. This can be seen from an incident in his early life too. At the time of sacred thread ceremony he kept his promise to seek alms from his foster mother (who was a woman of lower cast) against the rigid caste system of the social fabric.
Sri Ramakrishna did not marry due to any desire or pressure. But he married on his accord. Rather he suggested the suitable match for himself. Did he marry as a result of his past karma? Our karmas are categorized as sanchit (actions accumulated in past), agami (actions acquired in this life which will bring results in future) and prarabdha (actions already bearing results). Based on the scriptural knowledge, sanchita karma and agami karma are wiped out for a God realized soul but he/she has to experience the results of prarabdha karma. But the knower of Brahman is not forced to experience prarabdha karma. An individual who was always merged in God, who was beyond duality, how could he experience prarabdha karma?
Then WHY did he marry? Will be discussed in the next class.