“I had no idea what you were doing was so important!” This message came to me shortly after my mom left her body in early 2020.
Recently, after a year of battling Lyme disease, I was able to recommit to co-leading our spiritual community in Los Angeles. During meditation, I felt Paramhansa Yogananda say, “I’ve got big plans for you.”
“You have a big work to do here.” Swami Kriyananda said these words to me three times while he was in LA.
Why do I share these deeply personal messages? What is it that’s so important anyway?
What is this grand work that is to be done?
During Spiritual Renewal Week at Ananda Village this year, I understood these messages on a deeper level and how they are not just applicable to my life but to all truth-seekers and disciples. I always intuitively knew that they weren’t meant for me personally. To paraphrase what Swami Kriyananda said to someone who was commenting on how special the people of Ananda are, “If you met one or two people here that were special, you’d say they were special people, but when you meet a whole community of people who are special, you know that it is what they are doing that makes them special.”
Finding God is the most important work any of us could possibly be doing – in any age, in any land. We know from Yoganandaji that in order to find God, we must also help others attain freedom. He was quite specific about it, in fact, that we needed to free at least six others to achieve final liberation.
Kriya Yoga, or our inward meditation practice, is the “airplane route to God.” It is the route, the pathway, the highway to union with God. Karma Yoga, or our outward service to others, is the vehicle through which we can help others find God. We need both to make significant progress on the spiritual path.
We can be conscious instruments of God’s love in everything we do. We certainly don’t all need to become meditation teachers to help people find God! That said, I am so grateful for Ananda because through it, I have found such a beautiful vehicle to serve God.
Last week, Nayaswami Devi shared a passage that speaks perfectly to what I’m trying to say, from The Light of Superconsciousness by Swami Kriyananda:
“Recently a friend of ours said, “I think that Ananda is the most important thing happening on this planet.” I didn’t say what you might expect one to say from an attitude of humility, “I’m glad you think so.” I spoke rather from a sense of certainty, and said, “Yes, I know it is.” I believe that a hundred years from now people aren’t going to look back and think about Clinton, Whitewater, and all the different wars of this century. I think they’re going to look at the people who were seeking solutions. It’s not that Ananda specifically is the important place. It’s rather a spearhead, one of several, of something that’s happening today showing people a way to the future – a way of life that is based on essential human realities.”
I want to invite you to serve at Ananda, whether you live in Los Angeles or not, there are so many ways to get involved and help this powerful vehicle of service to God in others. And if you already are serving in one of our communities around the world, take a moment to think about how you can deepen your service and how that service can extend into everything you do.