A blessed New Year to you from all of us in Gurudeva Paramahansa Yogananda’s ashrams! And loving thanks for the good wishes and remembrances we received from around the world during the Christmas season, and for the many caring ways in which you have reached out to us throughout this past year.
As we begin 2022, my heartfelt prayer is that God tangibly bless you with a positive sense of direction to chart your path through the challenges and changes that are a fact of life in this transitional age. May you know the inwardly experienced wisdom and assurance that our Guru described in these beautiful words: “Understanding is the most precious possession of each soul. It is your inner vision, the intuitive faculty by which you can clearly perceive the truth — about yourself and others, and all situations that arise in your path — and correctly adjust your attitudes and actions accordingly.”
How do we find that clarity and confidence in discerning and holding to what is right? A renewed commitment to daily, intently focused meditation on the Divine is the greatest gift you can give yourself and your family in this era of wide-ranging social, economic, and even environmental upheavals. Daily devotional contact with the Eternal Source of security and resilience is the way to train ourselves to a constant, lived affirmation of our souls’ power to “stand unshaken amidst the crash of breaking worlds.”
The ability to anchor our consciousness in God may seem difficult to deploy at will when we face life’s challenges as isolated, solitary devotees. But when we join hands and hearts with God and Guru — and with the thousands of divine friends with whom we share this blessed path — we can find the stability and fortitude to forge steadily ahead in our spiritual progress no matter what disruptive cross-currents of events try to throw us off course. As individuals we may be subject to the law that environment is stronger than will power, but many wills united can alter the environment — or create a new one. Through group meditation and divine fellowship, we reinforce our personal efforts with the spiritual vibrations generated en masse by Kriya Yoga meditators worldwide.
So many of you have expressed gratitude for the newly created virtual environment of online meditations, devotional gatherings, and classes in many languages that has deepened your own sadhana over the past two years, and especially for the uplifting attunement with our revered Guru that you experience when you participate. I want to assure you that we plan to continue all these programmes in our international “wall-less temple” — including our online Convocation — and to expand them as we are able.
May the bond of satsanga (fellowship with Truth) that unites us as a truly worldwide family continue to infuse our individual lives with courage and strength and conviction that God’s light and joy are more tangibly real than any transitory experience in the outer world. And may that Light and Truth and Joy ever guide you toward achievement of your highest and noblest goals — in the New Year and always.
In divine love and friendship,
Swami Chidananda Giri