Dear Members and Friends,
Before the passing of our beloved President and Sanghamata Sri Daya Mataji, she had prepared the message she sends to our spiritual family and friends at the beginning of each new year. Her help and blessings are with us still, and we thought you would like to have this letter as a reminder of her deep caring for you and for all souls who are earnestly seeking a deeper relationship with God. Through her words may you feel her presence and encouragement, and be uplifted by her divine love.
For the Board of Directors of Yogoda Satsanga Society of India / Self-Realization Fellowship
New Year 2011
All of us in Gurudeva Paramahansa Yogananda's ashrams pray for you and send you our souls' friendship as we enter this new year together. We thank you, and Guruji's spiritual family and friends around the world, for your loving messages and remembrances during the Christmas season, and for your many expressions of caring in the past months. By our united prayers and efforts to uphold in our lives the ideals we share, we strengthen one another and help to spread a spirit of hope, of faith in God's goodness and in the divine potential of every soul. While facing fearlessly the daily realities of an ever-changing world, let us anchor our consciousness in God's changeless love that we may feel and reflect His presence. Such a sense of freedom comes when we think of making a fresh start, of leaving behind any limiting conditions we have placed on our happiness or our ability to reach our goals. Whatever our past experiences or present situation, we can choose from this moment to lead a fulfilling, serviceful life; we can cultivate the qualities of character that bring attunement with God and make worthy achievements possible. Through the new opportunities the year ahead holds, the Divine calls us to reawaken the latent courage and invincibility of our soul—to take charge of our life and become all that we can be. A vital first step is to shift the focus of our consciousness from the negative to the positive—from obstacles to the goal, from passivity in the face of circumstances to realizing that we can shape our own destiny. Everything you wish to be is within you, and you can bring out those traits by positive thinking and concrete actions. Continuously affirm and practice the qualities you especially want to manifest, such as greater will power, confidence, or patience. Thus you will plant in the deepest levels of your consciousness the seeds of success. If old patterns recur, refuse to give up. Remember that you can begin anew each day and each moment that you put forth a re-energized resolve.
Behind everything we seek in this world is our greatest need of all—to re-establish our connection with Him who is the Source of our being. When you commune with Him, letting go of all thoughts of self and of this world, such a soothing peace fills the heart—a sweetness and sense of well-being that nothing else can give. You are secure in His love and know that with His help you can do anything. As Guruji said, "Every time you feel limitations, close your eyes and say to yourself, 'I am the Infinite,' and you will see what power you have." By using that power to steadily improve yourself, you can be a positive, uplifting influence upon all who cross your path. I pray that, as you lay before God your highest aspirations and resolves, you may become aware of His supporting presence and the tender care with which He is guiding your soul's unfolding and drawing you closer to Him.
A most blessed Christmas to you and your dear ones,
Sri Daya Mata