Global Divine Family

“First we’ll sing in English, then Italian, then Russian.” Anand, one of the spiritual directors of Ananda Assisi, was leading us in our food blessing for a satsang at our LA center. We were greeting 40 Italian and 10 Russian pilgrims. The large group traveled from across the world to Los Angeles to visit Paramhansa Yogananda’s shrines. This was their first stop before attending Ananda’s 50th Anniversary Celebration at Ananda Village next week.  During our satsang, I was speaking with … Read More

The Hardest Part is Remembering

During a class in discipleship a friend shared how she felt a deepening connection with God when she offered her heart’s love and energy upward to the point between her eyebrows. She visualized Paramhansa Yogananda at that point and felt she was offering her unconditional love to him. A few weeks later, I saw her and asked how her meditations were going. She said, “It’s just so hard to remember!” She explained that when she did remember to offer her … Read More

Happiness or Misery: The Choice Is Yours

Most of us take up the spiritual path in earnest when we begin to understand the principle of non-sensuality. The true teaching of non-sensuality, as taught by Patanjali, is that nothing outside of us can bring us true happiness. Until that realization, we are drawn into the thought, “If I just had that                   (fill in the blank: new car, relationship, job, etc.) then, I could really enjoy life.” That kind of happiness … Read More

“Hi!” Harmony Initiator

Have you ever waved to a stranger and received a warm smile of acknowledgement and a wave back in return? It feels good, doesn’t it? What is it about waving that makes us feel a sense of brotherhood? I think we all know deep down that brotherhood (and I mean gender-neutral brotherhood/sisterhood/humanhood) is the only way to solve the world’s problems. Could world brotherhood start by raising our hand in greeting to strangers? I remember the first time I met … Read More

How to Be a Team Player

I used to think of myself as a lone wolf. I love seclusion and having my own private space. I used to have my own business and would have thought highly of being described as “fiercely independent.” Then, I became a disciple… and things started to change… slowly. Not that I became less independent or accountable but rather, I learned the value of spiritual community and teamwork. When I first came to Ananda Village in 2007, I was called “self-determined” … Read More