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Vedanta Sandesh
A Free Monthly Newsletter of Vedanta Mission sent by E-mail
Fourth issue : Oct 1998
 


‘GREETINGS FOR A VERY HAPPY DEEPAVALI’


 CONTENTS :

1. Preface : Festival of lights

2. Vedanta : Meditation

3. Know your Scriptures : Upanishads

4. Queries : Is every thing pre-destined

5. Stress Management : The Five Noble Truths of Stress

6. Quotes : Role of Guru

7. General : Geese Power

8. Mission Activities :

(a) Earlier – Ashram News (Vedanta Course, Navratra, Bhiksha)

VM-Indore News (Monthly bhajans, COCOS channel)

VM-Mumbai News (Gyana Yagna, Study Group, Bhajans)

(b) Forthcoming - Badri-Kedar Yatra


That which is the Light of all lights, is said to be beyond darkness. It is that which is to be known - the goal of Knowledge. It is right here in the hearts of all.

Bhagwad Gita Ch.13/Sh.17


PREFACE :

Festival of lights :

Deepawali is the festival of lights. Out of the various Hindu festivals this is the most common, clean and also the most beautiful. After the rains the houses are cleaned, white-washed, and decorated with lights and what not. There is Laxmi puja, worshipping the goddess of wealth, after which the children enjoy bursting crackers and eating sweets and take blessings from their elder ones. Apart from these various social benefits there is also the affirmation of our faith in Dharma. On this day Lord Rama had reached Ayodhya after fourteen years of vanavasa, and from this day started the golden era of Rama-rajya, which is even today an inspiring role model for governance. It is an occasion which affirms our faith that 'Yato dharmah tato jayah', where there is dharma there is victory. Satyameva Jayate, truth alone wins. All those who were an embodiment of adharma lay shattered or dead, dynamic goodness alone reined thereafter.

Apart from such positive affirmations of Dharma, the festival of light also has some more implied suggestions, between the lines. There is a famous Vedic mantra which says 'Not darkness but to light may you go'. Light has always been synonymous with knowledge & enlightenment, which in turn is unanimously accepted as the means to the ultimate fulfillment, moksha. We respect knowledge, we believe that all problems of mankind are because of ignorance alone. We have always believed that knowledge is the greatest power. The famous Gayatri mantra is our prayer to the benevolent God to bestow us with an intelligent mind. The festival of lights affirms our conviction that just as outside light eliminates all darkness, so also may the right knowledge eliminate all my problems.

Finally, light is not only associated with knowledge but even with God himself. One the best pointers for discovering God within us is that 'God is that light which reveals all thoughts or even their absence within you'. Which is that light with which you see your dreams ? ask the Upanishads. That light always is. It is unaffected by time, age or any thing else. It transcends all, yet it pervades all. Yes, it is Consciousness. Consciousness not as a product of mind, but that because of which even the mind can be whatever it is. It is in the light of consciousness that we are not only aware of the existence of worldly lights (sun etc.), but strangely enough unlike the worldly lights, the darkness too can become an object of our experience, it is not eliminated. Consciousness is not opposed to any thing. That 'light of all lights' is the essence of God. It is Brahman, the imperishable reality of the world. It is the real me. While children enjoy the crackers & sweets outside the wise ones are once again prompted by the festival of lights to turn to the great light within. Blasting off all ignorance, they partake the sweetest of all sweets, the Madhu, the eternal ambrosia of ones own real essence.


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VEDANTA :

Meditation :

The increasing inquisitiveness for Meditation :

Suddenly in last few years the word Meditation is on everyone's lips, and it is indeed nice to see that it has become something very desirable too. Whether it is bringing about peace of mind, manifesting of various latent potentials, increasing concentration, invoking grace of God, increasing devotion, contemplating on your Self, or even awakening to the blissful experience of the transcendental reality, the unanimous choice of means appears to have become - Meditation. Along with this development have cropped up dozens of kinds of Meditation. Regarding its process, the spectrum ranges from regulating your pranas, chanting meaningless words, meaningful words, contemplating on some mantra or even not thinking at all. The postures range from sitting, standing, lying down or even in action - by yourself or even along with someone else. All are said to be in meditation or rather in the process of gliding into the divine state of samadhi. When the demand has produced such a myriad of supply it has become necessary to see what our scriptures have to say in this matter before jumping in anyone of the aforesaid bandwagons to redemption.

Different facets of Meditation :

Meditation means Dhyana. Grammatically, the word Dhyana is created from the root 'Dhyae' which means to think deeply. Patanjali in his Yoga Sutras (which is the most authoritative text on the study of mind) says that 'Dhyana is the ability of the mind to flow towards an object without any interruption' (Yoga Su.3/2), not merely to bring about its awareness but its deeper understanding. In concentration we simply turn our attention to something, while in dhyana there is also a process of understanding. Half of our questions get answered when we merely see such fundamental definitions from authoritative sources. People who had coined the word and also used it technically definitely did not imply the various connotations which are prevalent today. Most of the people are using or rather misusing the word to communicate their own concepts & fancies, and not what has been coming down to us from ages. With due respect to the divine experiences of all we should first like to understand what the scriptures like Gita & Upanishads have to say in this context. Various questions come up in the mind of someone who wants to practice Meditation. Apart from What is Meditation ? other important questions are : What all is possible by Meditation ? What is the role of Meditation in our Spiritual unfoldment ? and of course, What is the process of Meditation ? We should all definitely try to understand these things first before going for just anything served in the name of Dhyana.

Meditation a must :

If Meditation implies bringing about a mind ideal for understanding any thing properly and the ability to identify with it completely, then all achievements are possible only with the ability to meditate. Whatever be your problem or challenge it is your ability to think and come to right conclusions which really matters. Ability to meditate not only indicates existence of positive qualities but also the ability to sublimate the negative ones. It is not only the door to all success outside, but is also an important ability to help bring about the awakening within. Meditation is basically an ability, which has to be applied for some thing. The ability to meditate by itself is not opposed to ignorance. Ignorance of our real nature alone brings all misapprehensions and the subsequent bondage, and therefore knowledge alone can eliminate it. Even though the very ability to meditate is not opposed to anything it does have a very important role. All sadhakas whether they know the truth or not should meditate. There are broadly two kinds of meditation. Upasana and Nididhyasana. The first one is for people who are yet to wake to the divine state within and the other for those who are enlightened ones.

Role of Meditation :

If not knowing the real nature of Self is the cause of all problems of mankind, then in order to bring about proper knowledge all what one has to do is to undertake Sravana, Manana of Vedantic scriptures through an appropriate teacher, and then revel in the glory of your divine Self in order to assimilate the invaluable prasad of one's Guru. In both sravana and manana ability to think deeply to the exclusion of all other thoughts is a very important requisite. If deep thinking to the exclusion of all other thoughts is meditation, then meditation does have a very important role. However, there is something more to meditation than simply deep thinking. In it is involved an intense feeling towards that which is the 'object' of meditation to the extent of self-forgetfulness. Meditation with reference to Self-knowledge implies turning your entire attention to your very being. No more any reinforcement of conviction, no thinking, no requirement of pramanas, no elimination of any doubts. You know it, now with all the attention at your command you just be that, intensely, silently. Intense awareness of the truth of yourself and that of the world just helps you to glide into the state of being - the samadhi.

Types of Meditation - Upasana & Nididhyasana :

Broadly there are two kinds of meditation, they are Upasana and Nididhyasana. One is for the ignorant one and other for an enlightened sadhaka. Someone said that 'If you dont know the Truth on what are you going to meditate, and if you already know the truth then why meditate.' No, meditation does have a role to play in both the cases. In case a person does not know the truth, then just out of faith towards our scriptures & guru, we take some thing which represents the ultimate and then we turn our attention on it and meditate. Such a meditation is called Upasana, and it has innumerable benefits, ranging from re-inforcement of our faith, bringing about devotion for God and also manifesting various latent qualities. Upasana is based on faith and ultimately it reinforces this very faith, and in the process brings various other benefits. Such is the place of upasana that it forms an important part of the daily routine of a faithful person. Every important work was undertaken only after doing some upasana. Japa or chanting the name of God is also a kind of upasana. The scriptures enjoin that karma & upasana should be done daily with equal degree of importance. Ignoring one is said to bring about various negative consequences. If however, the meaning of scriptures has been revealed to you, if you directly know the truth of yourself, if you now know Brahman first hand, then turning your entire attention to the truth of yourself so as to bring about its intense awareness (gyana-vritti) and reveling in that is called Nididhyasana. Nididhyasana facilitates complete assimilation of this new knowledge about ourself, it helps to eliminate all wrong notions which had trickled pretty deep into our unconscious minds. So before knowledge one should do upasana, and after the dawn of understanding do Nididhyasana. Once you have assimilated the knowledge then there are no injunctions or prohibitions for you. Do whatever you feel like doing. You may meditate or may not meditate, you are indeed totally free. Meditation cannot give you anything more. It has no role for you. You have achieved all that has to be achieved.

The Process of Meditation :

The process of meditation involves resorting to steps which facilitate introvertedness and quititude of mind. Whatever factors influence our minds to either disturb its quititude or make it extroverted have to be taken into consideration and become part of our sadhana. Even though what influences the mind of one may not necessarily influence the other, yet the scripture being a complete treatise deals with all possible factors and then leaves it to the discretion of the individual concerned to chart his own specific course.

The following steps are recommended for anyone taking up meditation :

1. Choose a time when physically and mentally you are fresh and relaxed. When externally there are least disturbances. When the ambiance around is positive and elevating. All such criteria are fulfilled if, after a good night sleep one gets up early in the morning for a session of meditation. Meditation at such time doesn't bring about sleep for the simple reason that one has already had a good sleep.

2. Choose a clean, nicely ventilated place, free from mosquito's etc. Take a semi-soft, steady and clean asana to sit down. Direction is not very important, but if it is brahma-muhurt then prefer facing east, the direction of sun rise. Sit down with legs folded, back straight, and head in line with back. Hands should hang loosely and fingers should be held together in front. The posture has to be such that even if we dis-identify with the body then also it doesn't fall. It may take some time to get into this habit of sitting properly.

3. Closing the eyes softly do some deep breathing or few pranayams. Then let the normal breathing follow. Sit completely still. Feel relaxed. Make it a point not to move at all, sit like a statue.

4. Charge your mind with emotion of bhakti. With heartfelt gratitude & devotion remember the ever flowing grace of God on you. Starting from this human life, to the opportunity to work for spiritual unfoldment, it is all his blessing. Let the feeling of blessedness overtake you. Once such a state is brought about, then just quietly sit in that blissful state, thoughtlessly. Let it overwhelm you. With this the mind keeps aside all rajo & tamo guna and there comes about predominance of sattva guna.

5. It is only after such initial preparation that inquiry into self-knowledge should be undertaken. Taking some mantra of Upanishad or other such Vedantic statement, whose meaning has been revealed to you by your teacher, think deeply about it in order to directly SEE its meaning. As the basic purport of all vedantic scriptures is to reveal the self which is complete and the ultimate, so having seen this fact, just be that. Let its significance trickle down deep into your mind. Let this knowledge have its own effect. Don't let even the thought of your old identity surface.

6. Even when the true meaning of scriptures is being seen the mind will progressively become more & more quiet & contended. Attainment of quititude by becoming aware of the true meaning of scriptures is called Savikalpa Samadhi, while being charged with this awareness to such an extent that you just be that and thereafter all awareness also drops, or rather the effort to retain the awareness is not necessary any more, then such a state is called Nirvikalpa Samadhi.

This is the kind of meditation as revealed in the Vedantic scriptures. An upasaka should first limit him or herself to the first four steps properly. Once the ability of this is accomplished then slowly try the fifth step. Don't hurry. Take all the time in the world, but SEE the meaning of scriptures. There alone lies your redemption.


"The ancient civilization of India differs from those of Egypt, Mesopotamia

and Greece, in that its traditions have been preserved

without breakdown to the present day".

Arthur Basham


KNOW YOUR SCRIPTURES :

Upanishads

Upanishads are that section of Vedas, which reveal its philosophy. They represent the culmination of Vedic thought and are thus also called Vedanta. They are mostly in question and answer form. There are many such discussions and therefore many Upanishads. They are all indeed a treat to read, they transport the reader to a different dimension all together. They are highly inspiring. All Upanishads expound & reveal the one non-dual reality. As the reality is one therefore the essence of everyone & everything is that one reality alone. The Atman is thus revealed as the Brahman. The real essence of all finite things & beings is the infinite, transcendental, imperishable and blissful reality. Discovering yourself as that one non-dual reality of this cosmos is the highest possible state which can be ever imagined. Upanishads reveal that Brahman has a divine, incomprehensible power called Maya. Wielding this power the Lord projects fields of experiences just as the mind projects the dream world. Whatever is created by Maya is seen but is not really there, just as the mirage-water. Not knowing this fact a person takes all this ephemeral objective world as real and thus not only starts taking him or herself as this objectifiable body-mind complex but also starts seeking fulfillment in this perceptible world. This seeking of permanence in the impermanent world is called samsara, an endless trip. Ending of samsara is possible only by knowing the Self as Self and the non-self as non-self. The moment this knowledge dawns all seeking ends, and one awakes to a state of total fulfillment. Knowledge alone redeems thunder the Upanishads, while karma and devotion facilitate bringing about of the right state of mind to get knowledge. These Upanishads should never be studied by oneself but only through a competent teacher, who is Srotriya & Brahma-nishtha, i.e. one who has awakened to the state of total contentment within and also is aware of the methodology of Upanishads properly. He alone can rightly interpret what each word and line means and still more important as to what is the implication between the lines.

Upanishads are Pramana for knowing the Self. Pramana means that which is the means of knowledge. Upanishads are unanimously accepted by all the different sects of Hinduism as the 'means of knowledge' for the knowledge of Self, just as direct perception is the means of knowledge to know the forms & colors of the things outside. Having known color etc. of an object directly with our own eyes we never require any other means to substantiate this knowledge. That is what is meant by pramana. The Self which is the very knower behind all knowledge is not available to be known by any other means of knowledge. It is not an object of perception and therefore Pratyaksha Pramana (Direct Perception) is not applicable and so also any other pramana which depend on direct perception in some way or the other. Upanishads are sabda-pramana and are independently capable of revealing the Self when expounded by a competent teacher to a competent student. One should do the sravana of Upanishads, which means that the real vision & message of Upanishads should be discerned with the help of a teacher. Unlike the Karma-kanda of Vedas the Upanishads do not have any do's or don'ts, they are just revelatory in nature. They reveal the truth, which is an end in itself. Being pramana they are looked upon as definite as the principles of science. There is nothing more higher than the Upanishadic reference on something. This is taken with greatest reverence.

The word Upanishad is formed from the root 'sad' with prefixes upa and ni. There are three meanings of the root, to loosen, to lead somewhere and to destroy. Upanishad represents that knowledge which loosens something pertaining to the self (something very near), it loosens our various misapprehensions regarding ourselves, and finally it leads us to the direct knowledge of the truth of ourself. Basically Upanishad means knowledge and not a class of literature or text. The word is used for texts only in a secondary way. Taking secondarily it to be a class of text, then we have various Upanishads. All of them are equally respectful, but today some of them are referred to as the major Upanishad and some are called the minor ones. The reason for this is simply that on some Upanishads we have very beautiful commentaries by our great Acharyas. Because of this it is easy to get proper insights into the vision of Upanishads, and thus they are preferred to be studied first. That is the only reason why they are referred to as major Upanishads. The Upanishads on which Sri Adi Sankara has written his bhashyas are Isa, Katha, Kena, Aitreya, Taittreya, Mundaka, Mandukya, Prasna, Chandogya and Brihadaranyaka. The division of these major Upanishads in the Four Vedas is as follows :

Rig Veda - Aitreya

Sama Veda - Kena and Chandogya

Yajur Veda - Isa, Katha, Taittreya and Brihadaranyaka

Atharva Veda - Prasna, Mundaka and Mandukya

These ten upanishads become a 'must-study ' for all those who want to discern the real purport of Upanishads. It is needless to say that these Upanishads should always be studied along with their commentaries (bhashyas) and that also through a competent teacher alone.


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Share & spread your moments of joy by taking care of one full day's expenses of food for the inmates (Swamis & Brahmachari's) of

Vedanta Ashram

a free, charitable Hindu monastery. You may send a DD of

Rs. 500/- (for ordinary Bhiksha), or Rs.1000/- (for special feast)

on any of your special personal occasions like birthdays, marriage anniversaries, death anniversaries etc. of your near & dear ones, along with the details, like the name of person, the nature of occasion and the date on which the

bhiksha is to be offered.

The DD should be in favor of

'VEDANTA PARMARTHIC SEWA TRUST, INDORE.'


YOUR QUERIES :

Is every thing pre-destined !

(Excerpts of the answer Poojya Guruji gave to a young man at an open house question-answer session at Indore)

No, everything is not pre-destined. To say every thing is pre-destined is to deny all what scriptures have been trying to communicate. It would be greatest dis-service to the ageless vedic wisdom, if every thing is imagined to be pre-destined, and the basic objective of religious masters is equated with predicting future. It is not only denying the scriptures but even your very life & freedom.

Lets just go into this. Who has created this destiny ? Two possibilities crop up in our mind. Either this destiny factor has been created by God or by the karma's of man. In either case there is a problem. If God has created destiny then he alone will be responsible for all the pain, injustice and mess we see around. He will have to be seen as the greatest sadist we can ever imagine. Moreover, if he alone runs the show then why should he come and give discourses to humans who are just his puppets, who have no freedom whatsoever. Scriptures like Vedas and Gita who talk about karma's will become redundant. To say that God alone decides everything is to rob the life of all its drive, challenge & creativity. If we however say that it our past karma's which constitutes our destiny and that alone decides everything in this life, then a question arises that if I am the one who has created these papa-punya karma's in my earlier life, then I can very well create some papa-punya in this life too. And if that be so then I can very well change or create my so called destiny. There is thus no scope of saying that everything is pre-destined.

Even though everything is not pre-destined yet there is something called destiny. The word destiny implies that some things are inevitable in this present moment. What is inevitable now is the fruits of our past actions. They are something which are already done and not available for change, so their effects, good or bad, are said to be destined. Every action has to bring about a result, so action once done will bring some fruits, whether I like it or dont. If I have overeaten last night then my indigestion becomes my destiny in the morning. Having got such a situation we can thereafter perform some other karma's which may neutralize its negative effects, but we have to face the music of our past karma's. This is a perfect cause & effect theory, and there is neither any thing wrong or strange about it. That we get the phala of our karma's is a great blessing. It speaks a lot about the order existing in the creation. It also shows that whoever has created all this has bestowed us with a freedom to make or mar our life. He has indeed passed the ball in our court. We are free to turn this fact into our own advantage, by simply becoming all the more alert about our actions. Our destiny is thereafter carved out by us. In the right karma we play our part yet retain awareness of that intelligence who has not only created this whole order, but has bestowed us with this ability and oppurtunity to carve our destiny.

There are two aspects of a karma. One, a situation comes, and two, we respond to it. Every situation is a product of the sum total of all our past karma's, both of this life and of the earlier ones. This aspect is destined to come. In our response we are however totally free. We can act mechanically, casually or even dynamically, intelligently, creatively in a completely new way. We are free and in fact this alone is our freedom. This aspect not only reveals our freedom, but this alone is of greatest consequence. This is our 'karma', this alone creates all papa or punya. In this aspect alone is real challenge & creativity. In fact in this alone is the real joy of karma. If someone exercises and enjoys this aspect properly then he or she is the most blessed person. One, the joy of such person who enjoys the very act of doing something is never snatched away by any situation whatsoever. Two, even if the person is not too bothered about the fruits of action then also such person alone gets right fruits too, for the simple reason that they have performed well, and finally, such people acquire all the qualities required to awaken to the transcendental dimension of their own Self. They are called the Karma-yogis. Such people are never bothered about their future, they enjoy every moment of their lives. Such people consider prediction of their future unnecessary, and also smacking of lack of faith in God who alone is the dispenser of all fruits of action. What we do is our offering at his feet, and what comes to us in the form of situations is his gift to us, his prasad.

Predictions take away the very joy of suspense inherent in all situations. It is only those people who do not know what is their role in every action, who are not aware of what their real freedom is, and also do not know what gives the real joy - the very act of doing something or getting its fruits, and who are lacking within, and in their extrovertedness are desperately bothered about getting some situations, that destiny becomes some thing very important. Such people are deluded fools, they are people with weak minds, missing something great in life. They do not know how to live. They know not what is the vision, message & purport of scriptures. They are holding on to Vedangas, and that also wrongly, and leaving aside the message of the very Vedas. So dont bother about destiny, change your priorities, live every moment in suspense and enjoy it thoroughly. Believe in yourself, believe in God, take every situation as a challenge and enjoy the very act of doing something, enjoy every moment of your life.


The factors responsible for our inability to take initiative to go & look out for a guru are the factors which are responsible for our inability to break open our shell.

Swami Atmananda


QUOTES :

Role of Guru

Just as a lamp can be lit only with a lightened lamp, so also self-knowledge can take place only with the help of a Sat-guru.

It is indeed the extremely blessed ones who find company and association of men with true wisdom and love to help us awake from this realm of ignorance.

Knowledge takes place in an atmosphere of love and egolessness, which is a natural by-product in our relationship with our Sat-guru.

Guru should be living and with whom communication can take place easily.

Those who say that there is no necessity of a Guru in life, do not know what is the real 'means of knowledge' (pramana) for Self-knowledge. They can neither imagine the joy of relationship with a truly enlightened soul.

If you really seek self-knowledge then you will have to show some extra initiative & enthusiasm to look out for a true teacher, who is not only contented with & in himself, but is also a knowledgeable person; well aware of the secrets & traditions Upanishads.

Guru-upasadana or approaching the teacher, is a very important indicator of the state of the mind of a student. It reveals various things about the student. The initiative on the part of the student reveals his intense desire to know the truth of oneself, it also reveals his or her egolessness. It is only those people who cannot keep aside their ego, who cannot go to someone and reveal their ignorance. Guru-upasadana is seen as a great leap forward.

If you don’t find someone who is truly an embodiment of knowledge, love & contentment, then pray to God for association of such a truly blessed soul, seek him, go to him, establish relationship with him, and initiate discussions with him on the secrets of life. Don’t waste your time, words or energy elsewhere. Life is too precious to be wasted in the midst of egoistic people whose knowledge is yet to help them also. You have desperately prayed & craved for lesser things in life, why not show the same will & intensity for better things.

It is obvious that as the subject matter of self-knowledge is our very Self, the whole inquiry has to be conducted in & by our own mind. The truth too will be revealed as our very Self. These things are never a point of doubt or contention. This is also a fact that Guru in his true essence resides in all of us, but by itself this has never been of any help to us, we continue to suffer inspite of that 'guru' within us. What is required is not the essence of Guru, but Guru in flesh & blood with whom we can discuss, talk and find a way out of the mess in which we ourselves have brought ourselves to. Truth is right there in front of you - revealed in all its glory, it is just that there is ignorance about it. Having identified the problem, why should there be any hesitation in taking help of someone who has already undertaken this journey. It is indeed funny to see what all excuses the ego thinks about, what all logic it discovers, just to avoid the possibility of its surrendering at the feet of someone who is nothing but an embodiment of true knowledge & love.


A Quarterly Magazine of Vedanta Mission in HINDI is going to be published shortly. The Magazine has been named 'Vedanta Piyush'. It will be available at an annual subscription of Rs. 50/- only.


STRESS MANAGEMENT :

(In this new section Poojya Swami Atmanandaji will be talking about the various aspects of managing stress - the holistic way)

The Five Noble Truths of Stress

Noble Truth Number One

Stress is an inevitable part of anyone's life

having definite goals & ideas.

Don’t look at it as your enemy.

Noble Truth Number Two

Stress is something to be managed & not eliminated.

There is negative stress as well as positive stress.

If negative one is a curse then positive one is indeed a blessing.

Noble Truth Number three

Negative stress indicates to us to bring about

some adjustments within us.

Noble Truth Number Four

The painful & devastating energy

of negative stress can be transformed into

the surging, dynamic enthusiasm of positive stress.

Noble Truth Number Five

The real cause of negative stress

are basically some erroneous perceptions

about ourselves and the world around us.


You may send articles, poems and quotes for being published in our General Section


GENERAL SECTION :

Geese Power

In the fall when you see geese heading south for the winter flying along in the "V" formation, you might be interested in knowing what science has discovered about why they fly that way. It has been learned that as each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in a "V" formation, the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own.
PEOPLE WHO ARE PART OF A TEAM AND SHARE A COMMON DIRECTION GET WHERE THEY ARE GOING QUICKER AND EASIER, BECAUSE THEY ARE TRAVELING ON THE TRUST OF ONE ANOTHER.

Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go through it alone and quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the power of the flock.
IF WE HAVE AS MUCH SENSE AS A GOOSE, WE WILL SHARE INFORMATION WITH THOSE WHO ARE HEADED THE SAME WAY WE ARE GOING.

When the lead goose gets tired, he rotates back in the wing and another goose takes over.
IT PAYS TO SHARE LEADERSHIP AND TAKE TURNS DOING HARD JOBS.

The geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep their speed.
WORDS OF SUPPORT AND INSPIRATION HELP ENERGIZE THOSE ON THE FRONT LINE, HELPING THEM TO KEEP PACE IN SPITE OF THE DAY-TO-DAY PRESSURES AND FATIGUE.

Finally, when a goose gets sick or is wounded by a gunshot and falls out, two geese fall out of the formation and follow the injured one down to help and protect him. They stay with him until he is either able to fly or until he
is dead, and then they launch out with another formation to catch up with their group.
IF WE HAVE THE SENSE OF A GOOSE, WE WILL STAND BY EACH OTHER WHEN THINGS GET ROUGH.

The next time you see a formation of geese, remember...
IT IS A REWARD, A CHALLENGE AND A PRIVILEGE

to be a contributing member of a TEAM.


Visit Home Page of Vedanta Mission at :

http://members.tripod.com/~vedantamission/index.html


ACTIVITIES SECTION :

Earlier

1. Ashram News :

(a) Vedanta Course : In the Vedanta Course being conducted by Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji, the Acharya of the Course, the texts being taken nowadays are Gita Chapter 5, Atma Bodha and Laghu Siddhanta Kaumudi. The latter text is being taken by Swami Nischalanandaji of Kailash Ashram, Rishikesh. Swamiji is also polishing the Vedic Chanting of the students.

(b) Special programs : At the time of sending this News, Navratra was being celebrated in the Ashram. A statue of Ma Durga was brought on the day prior to Navratra and was installed in the Satsang Hall with various decoration. As part of some special programs the inmates along with various devotees gather to chant the Durga Saptashati in the morning, and also read out its meaning in the evening satsang to all bhaktas.

(c) Bhiksha : Following devotees offered Bhiksha to the Ashram inmates in the month of Sept :

10th Sept Sraddha of father of Sh. PH Shah

11th Sept Birthday of Vishal Lalwani s/o Smt. Sheela Lalwani

16th Sept Death anniversary of mother of Sh. KL Malhotra

20th Sept Birthday of Smt. Uma Mehra

20th Sept Death anniversary of father of Sh. Rajendra Nath Magow

20th Sept On the occasion of Sarva Pitra Amavasya. By Smt & Sh Jagdeesh Raikwar

2. Vedanta Mission - Indore News :

(a) Monthly Bhajan :

This month the Bhajan program of the devotees was organized at the residence of Smt. Sushila Garg. The attendance was impressive. The program started with prayer and was followed by beautiful bhajans. That day happened to be the birthday of the Charchit, son of Smt & Sh Sunil Garg, so as a special case some snacks too were offered to the devotees & guests.

(b) Programs at COCOS Cable Network :

There were two special programs organised by COCOS Cable Network this month.

(i) First was the Open House Q&A session with Poojya Guruji at the studios of the Channel. This program is telecast every week to the various audience of the Network in Indore, Ujjain, Ratlam, Shajapur and Bhopal.

(2) The second program was discourse of Poojya Guruji at the Basketball Stadium, before an audience of more than ten thousand devotees. The subject of the discourses (which are still continuing) is 'Nav Durga'. After a brief introduction of the mythological story of one of the nine Durga every day, Poojya Guruji reveals their spiritual significance. Thereafter starts the Garba dances etc. which continue till early morning. This program is being telecast live on the Network in Indore.

3. Vedanta Mission - Mumbai News :

(a) Gita Gyana Yagna by Swamini Amitanandaji at Bandra :

Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji reached Mumbai on 6th Sept and started the Yagna the same evening at Bandra Hindu Association Hall. The text of the discourses were Gita Chapter 9 and the First Chapter of Sri Badrish Stotram, written by Swami Tapovanji Maharaj. The Yagna was very well attended and received.

(b) Study Group :

The weekly study group at BHA Hall is at present discussing the Gita Gist following the Taped pravachans of Sampoorna Gita conducted by Poojya Guruji earlier. Meeting for organizing the Gita Mahayagna as part of the celebrations of Gita Jayanti celebrations, are also conducted there.

(c) Monthly Bhajans :

This month the monthly bhajan program was organised at the residence of Sh & Smt Uma Malhotra, who is not only a good singer by herself but also a dynamic & enthusiastic worker of Vedanta Mission.


Forthcoming

Badri Kedar Yatra :

The proposed Yatra to Badrinath and Kedarnath will start from Hardwar on 6th Oct. Rest of the program was as planned earlier. The devotees will accompany Poojya Guruji Swami Atmanandaji, Swami Nischalanandaji and Swamini Amitanandaji. The group is likely to visit Badrinath, Kedarnath, Joshimath, Gauri kund, Rudra Prayag, Hardwar and Rishikesh. The group is likely to catch the return train from Hardwar on 14th Oct.


OM TAT SAT


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