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Monthly eMagazine of the International Vedanta Mission

Year 21


Issue 9

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Monthly eMagazine of the International Vedanta Mission Mar 2015 : Year 21 / Issue 9 Editor: Swamini Samatananda Saraswati

eu ,o euq";k.kka dkj.ka cU/keks{k;ks% A cU/kk; fo"k;klDra eqDra fufoZ"k;a Le`re~AA Mind alone is the cause of bondage or liberation for human beings. The mind which is helplessly attached to the objects (because it imagines them alone as the truth) is in bondage; while the one which can stand apart freely (because it is aware of its truth) is indeed known as free & liberated one. Amrutbindu Upanishad - 2

Published by

International Vedanta Mission /

Section Index

1. 2. 4. 5. 6. 7. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11.

Message of P. Guruji Tattva Bodha Letter Gita Reflections Jivanmukta Yoga Vasistha Story Section VM News VM Activities Album VM Programs


5 6-7 9 10-11 13 14-15 17 18 19 20-21 23

from Poojya Guruji Nivritti & Sanyas On Mahashivratri day, there was the Sanyas Deeksha of Brahmachari Ram, and a new Mahatma proudly joined the fraternity of Sanyasis in our organization - he is Swami Asangananda Saraswati. It was indeed a rare event to watch and those who witnessed the whole event were very blessed indeed. To witness a marraige ceremony is common, but to witness a Sanyas Deeksha is very rare indeed. This is specially all the more heartening when we see some foreigner coming all the way to India, and getting so highly impressed with the vision & values of the philosophy of Hinduism, that he decides to take full time into this lore. Vladimir Danchenko came to Vedanta Ashram from a place called Samara, in Russia, and stayed for months at the Ashram and then decided to take to this life fulltime. He has earlier been to many countries, studied various philosophies, joined various sects, till the time he studied Vedanta. When we see someone taking sanyas, many people wonder as to what exactly is sanyas? Is Sanyas synonymous with not doing anything? If the earlier phase of life all about doing this or that Pravritti, then is Sanyas all about not doing anything - Nivritti? Well, this is an important question for anyone wishing to know the very truth of this unique system of our land. Pravritti and Nivritti, are the capacity to do anything whole-heartedly, and thereafter learning to stand-apart and relax fully. These two important qualities which are extremely necessary for every 'doer', and are like two sides of a coin. One who can do both these things nicely as part of his life, will not only bring the best out of himself, but will never be depressed or stressed. Such people will always be energetic, enthusiastic & creative. It is just like doing your best throughout the waking hours, and then having a nice deep sleep thereafter. Then alone our next day will be better. This is pravritti & nivritti. However please note that Nivritti is not Sanyas. Nivritti is 'doer-centric' and happens just because of getting tired etc, a break is required to freshen up to again face the challenges & responsibilities of life with greater vigour & energy. Sanyas is to entertain that state of mind which has realized very clearly that everything which is ‘doer-centric’ is always in a domain of change - it is all anitya. Due to this realization some people, who have been doing both these very nicely and are still capable of doing this, see the futility of revelling in the realm of change. They thus become uninvolved witness to everything that happens, neither doing nor not-doing anything. It is this unique state of mind which is the essence of Sanyas, and all the shastras are unanimous in their declaration that it is only these intelligently uninvolved ones who can objectively analyse everything and shall indeed realize the truth. Sanyasis just go along with the flow, accepting what is. Karma implies gravitation towards ‘what should be’ after being dissatisfied with ‘what is’, while Sanyas implies realization of having a re-look at our notions of ‘what is’. They keep delving deeper to know the truth of everything including themself. All their energy is just used to know the truth of what is. Waking up to the truth of ‘what is’ is the life & goal of a Sanyasi.

Tattva Bodha Six Divine Qualities - Damah The first quality of ‘Sama’ amongst the six divine qualities was discussed in the last edition. Now the student raises his desire to understand what is the nature of the second divine quality that which is called as ‘Dama’. In this section we will understand the meaning and nature of Dama, its significance in acquiring spiritual knowledge and how Dama can be brought about. Sama was described as the control of the mind and now Dama is being discussed as control of the sense organs.

What is Damah? Damah means the ability to master & control our sense organs.

importance can also be seen in worldly life.

What is Dama? In the previous discussion we learnt that sama is

Dama is being a Master in experiencing objects:

the restraining of the mind, here dama is restraining of the

As long as we live life will always be an encounter

sense organs. The five sense organs, e.g., the eyes, ears,

between the sense organs and worldly objects. This cannot

nose, the faculty of touch, and the tongue, have a natural

be evaded even by a person of knowledge and in fact there

inclination to percieve their respective objects. God has

is no need for any kind of supression or evasion of any

designed them to do so. So it is not unnatural for any of the

kind of experience. Intelligence does not lie in being scared

sense organs to get attracted to its respective object. The

of indulgence due to the fear of attachment but intelligence

tongue is made to be sensitive to various kinds of tastes,

lies in being free to experience something and if need be

sweet, sour, bitter etc. The ears are designed to grasp sound

being free to not experience something. Wisdom is about

and similarly each sense organ has its specific use. In such

having an intelligent relationship with the world. Wisdom is

a case where the sense organs are naturally inclined towards

in being able to focus our attention towards something

their respective objects what is the role of Dama then? The

without any attachments, habits and conditionings. Very

capacity to overcome thoughtless & helpless gravitation

often, we find that our own minds and sense organs are

towards objects is called Dama.

obstacles to what we want to do. I want that my ears should

Dama is bringing about a discriminative mastery over

be with me but they go to listen to a sound elsewhere. I

the use of our sense organs. More often we fail to be the

want my eyes should be with me, but they want to see

intelligent masters of our sense organs but our mind and

something else. The problem arises that when I need to be

senses get helplessly lured towards various objects and

focused I am unable to focus on my work or on my studies.

tastes gravitated by our various likes and dislikes, also

A master is one who not only while experiencing the objects

resulting in attachment and habitual craving. Dama is a very

gives full attention & justice to the present moment but

important quality not only for a spiritual aspirant but it's

thereafter also does not let this experience linger in his or

Vedanta Sandesh

her mind so as to condition his subsequent thoughts &

life. He neither consumes too much nor too little food, nor

responses. He drops the earlier thoughts & is available

walks or moves too much or too little. He has a sense of

with a free mind for the next moment. Such people alone

proportion with respect to how long he sleeps; he sleeps

live & enjoy best – every moment of their life. Vedic mantras

neither too much nor too little. Similarly, he keeps awake

say-O gods! May we hear auspicious things with the ears.

neither too much nor too little. He values time & energy.

May we see auspicious things with the eyes. Glorifying

There is a discipline that ultimately prepares him for the

(You) through the Vedas with healthy limbs, may we enjoy

seat of knowledge and meditation. Again In the Bhagavad

(our full) life as allotted by the Lord.

Gita Sri Krishna compares sense objects to a powerful wind that distracts a sailboat away from its path,

'Dama' an important quality for the persuit of self

vaayurnaavamivaambhasi. Like a powerful wind, the sense


organs distract the mind away from its focus and drag it

Having a focused mind and undistracted sense

into the sense objects. Therefore, there is a need to have

organs is essential for the pursuit of self-knowledge. In

mastery over our minds and over our sense organs.

the Vedas there are prayer mantras seeking the blessings How is Dama to be brought about?

of the Devatas to fascilitate one's total availability for a person who is about to persuit this knowledge. May my

The following points prove very helpful to bring

limbs grow (strong). May the organs of speech, eyes, ears,

about the quality of Dama :

and all the (other) organs as well as (their) power (grow

1. Learn to live as per your convictions.

strong). Dama implies discipline in all activities of a spiritual

2. As a test to see that the intellect is in command,

student. His life is dedicated in bringing about alertness,

formulate some do’s & don’ts and live as per them, keeping

focus, awareness of all such qualities that will fascilitate

aside our earlier likes etc. Such exercises need to be done

spiritual learning. A sportsman plans all his activities in a

till we know that it is the intellect which is in command &

manner that will help him become the best player in the

not our whims.

world. His diet, his sleep, his mindset, his clothes, his social

3. In the beginning we can also let someone else decide

interactions all are disciplined to bring about the best in

some do’s & don’ts for us.

him as a player. So also a spiritual seeker needs to use all

4. Whenever we discover any thoughtless & helpless act

his physical and mental faculties in a way that help him

then, first we should lovingly explain the fallacy of this to

embrace Self-knowledge without any obstacles created by

our own minds, and if need be punish it too.

the Self. In the sixth chapter of the Gita Sri Krishna says-

5. Keep company of those people who have this ability or

yuktahaar vihaarasya yukta cheshtasya karmasu

at least value for this quality.

yukta swapnaava bodhasya so yogo bhavati dukkhaha.

6. Read good inspiring literature, and aim for the ultimate.

A sincere seeker of knowledge leads a balanced

Wishing all our readers a very auspicious, colorful & happy

Holi -7-

The Triple Filter Test In ancient Greece, Socrates was reputed to hold knowledge in high esteem. One day an acquaintance met the great philosopher and said, "Do you know what I just heard about your friend?" "Hold on a minute," Socrates replied. "Before you talk to me about my friend, it might be good idea to take a moment and filter what you’re going to say. That’s why I call it the triple filter test. The first filter is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?" "Well, no," the man said, "actually I just heard about it and…" "All right," said Socrates. "So you don’t really know if it’s true or not. Now, let’s try the second filter, the filter of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend something good?" "Umm, no, on the contrary…" "So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me something bad about my friend, but you’re not certain it’s true. You may still pass the test though, because there’s one filter left—the filter of Usefulness. Is what you want to tell me about my friend going to be useful to me?" "No, not really." "Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell me is neither true, nor good, nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?"

Vedanta Sandesh

Living as Brahman First letter of Poojya Guruji to Swami Asangananda after he left Ashram ____________________________________

Hari om Asanga, Nice to know that your long travel back to Samara went off unhindered & nicely.

Now, learn to live as Poorna, as Brahman – learn to live as ‘God’ himself. That’s your goal & life now, not as a seeker or sadhaka. - PoojyaGuruji

Also nice to know that the weather is getting warmer & better and the advent of spring is round the corner, however now let God bring any weather condition outside, you need to be just aware of everything in an uninvolved way - as a witness, and turn your attention not only to know the truth of all what is outside, but moreso of the one who aware of it all. You are THAT, and as your name suggests you are always asanga – untouched by all what it reveals. The mind of ignorant ones is unnecessarily bothered by what is revealed outside. First we give importance to things outside then we keep on dancing to its tune. That’s the funny game of the world. You are pure, infinite consciousness – which is untouched by all what you reveal, and that alone is the truth, rest is all an illusion, a changing world – a beautiful dream. There is no independent existence of all what is revealed. It is so obvious that even the existence of an ‘object’ depends on it being revealed by us, that is why anything which we are not conscious doesn’t have any existence. The goal of a sanyasi is to always be aware of the fact that ‘I am one, non-dual, infinite consciousness’. Aham Brahmasmi. May your sanyas help you to remain focused on the truth you have appreciated. Everyone remembers you as a person here lovingly. We all wish & pray that you live an enlightened & complete life, and your manifestation becomes a blessing to the ignorant people of the world. Now, learn to live as Poorna, as Brahman – learn to live as ‘God’ himself. That’s your goal & life now, not as a seeker or sadhaka. Lots of love & om Guruji



Yogi yunjita satatam

Swamini Samatananda

Meditation is one form of Sadhana which attracts many spiritual aspirants. But as much as it is a sadhana which the scriptures prescribe & which most of us wish to practice too, yet meditation is also one of the most misunderstood and mal practised sadhanas. Most often meditation is understood as a practice that takes us to the level of thoughtlessness or which brings about some divine experiences of seeing God, ringing bells & of sparkling lights. This understanding or practice of meditation is misguiding and harmful making a sincere seeker escape into an imaginary world or going into a temporary state of nothingness. Meditation in it's true meaning is a state of awakening in the real nature of the Self. A state of ‘being’ where one awakens into state of total fulfilment. A state where there is no duality between the jiva, the world and Ishwara. This state of awakening in the seat of meditation has been explained in it's authentic manner in the sixth chapter of the Gita. Often meditation is conceived as an independent sadhana practiced in isolation. Taking meditation as an isolated and independent package would be depriving the self of the right means, the right goal and the benefits of meditation. Meditation is not a state or practice that can be jumped into. It requires preparation to bring about well controlled sense organs, a quite, poised and thoughtful mind and an intellect that been exposed to the authentic knowledge of the scriptures at the feet of a Master. There needs to be a balance and good tuning between the body, mind and the intellect. This kind of an equi poised body, mind and intellect is brought about in the field of action and devotion itself before one takes to the seat of meditation. Preparing the mind in the field of Action: The preparations to awake to the ‘state of being’ start much before our sitting sessions – in the field of our actions. In the sixth chapter called the Atma Sayam Yoga or also popularly known as Dhyana Yoga, Sri Krishna begins the discourse by telling that whoever performs actions dynamically without any dependencies and expectations whatsoever is truly a sanyasi and a yogi. Bhagwan reveals the necessity to become a Yogaroodha, that is a karma yogi who has brought about a sattwik, quite and balanced mind. This alone is the prerequisite to the seat of meditation. An agitated mind that is helplessly lured by various desires and personal likes and dislikes cannot be ready for any kind of subtle contemplation. A person who has his senses under control is like being one’s own friend, otherwise one keeps on creating obstacles for one’s own Self. Strive to lead a balanced life whereby all the physical requirements are looked after in a balanced manner without any extremities. A balanced diet-not too much and not too less, sufficient amount of sleep, not too much and not too less. Having prepared the mind by selfless actions at the feet of God let us now enter the portals of meditation. Daily meditation is a package based on Pranayama, Dharana, Dhyana and then later on - Atma-gyana and Samadhi. Asana: Sit down in the early hours of the morning, after having a nice sleep. Preferably sit on the floor crossed legs on an asana. If there are health issues one can make use of the chair but sit upright. One should keep the back straight, with upright neck and head. The posture itself should reveal someone who is fully awake, and thus facilitate even further awakening. Let your body and its health issues be forgotten. Having sat down in such a posture, one should bring to mind the fact, that this is your personal appointment with God and yourself, so keep everything aside, however important it may be. Call a truce with the world outside. Withdraw the sense organs and do not react to any kind of sounds outside good or bad. This is your special appointment with God and yourself, so mentally Vedanta Sandesh

seek the blessings of your Guru and start with a prayerful mood that 'O God, please bless me to meditate properly so that I may become your good instrument, fulfil all my responsibilities in a nice way, and even realize you - the ultimate divinity.' Pranayama: Pranayama is the science of giving right direction and optimising our energy levels. Inhale to the fullest and then retain the full lungs for a few seconds and then having exhaled also retain the empty lungs for a few seconds. Chant Om three times. With each breath chant Om in a longish way, in one breath, till you exhale all the air out of you lungs. One needs to start this chant loudly which slowly fades off. When chanting Om in such a way, feel that the entire area is getting blessed & purified. Chanting of Om in the beginning brings about a quite, alert and thoughtful mind.

Meditation in it's true meaning is a state of awakening in the real nature of the Self. A state of ‘being’ where one awakens into state of total fulfillment. A state where there is no duality between the jiva, the world and Ishwara. - Samatananda

Dharana (Focusing the Mind) Dharana is one of the steps of Ashtanga Yoga, and deals with the focusing of the mind on one object. It is basically concentration. We need to focus our mind steadily on something to practice Dharana. One should not misunderstand Dharana to be meditation. Concentration is not meditation. Meditation is awakening to our real self, and then just consciously 'being' dropping all other thoughts. To practice focus of the mind we can use some external form too. Dhyana: Having practiced Dharana and brought about a focused, steady, sensitive and an attentive mind, one then needs to do 'Dhyana'. In the preliminary stage, Dhyana is a sadhana which involves dropping of all worldly preoccupations, feeling the presence of my beloved God and identifying with an emotion of oneness with him. It is a devotional oneness with God invoking a saatwik mind, a mind which is overwhelmed by gratitude and a feeling of blessedness. It is a practice that is like taking a dip in the loving bond with Ishwara seeing him with faith as the Supreme Intelligence, as the creator, sustainer and destroyer of the world. This meditational practice is a form of Upasana where we relate with a manifestation of God given in the scriptures, preferably our Ishta Devata-our personalised form of God, thinking of whom we feel overwhelmed & inspired.Such a devotional bond inspires, recharges, refreshes and destresses the mind of worldly impurities bringing about a mind that is pure, subtle, enthused and blessed, not only bringing about a sense of blissful existence in the seat of meditation but also making us charged and enthused to live a sattwik life, thereafter. This is being pointed out in the sloka ‘Yogi yunjita satatam’. H a v i n g practiced a life that is featured by selfless actions as a service to God and also having risen to the emotional oneness with God an alert and subtle student comes to realize the limitations of his understanding of Ishwara and of himself as a Jiva. In spite of the emotional upliftment and devotional bond with God he realizes the ever existent duality between him & Ishwara. Not only this he also see his so called understanding of Ishwara & himself is highly questionable. Such a seeker goes in search of a Sadguru and having got the opportunity to study the Scriptures he now dedicates himself in enquiring and understanding the nature of Jiva and Ishwara dropping the efforts of having to reach some goal other than him. If Ishwara pervades everything then he is not separate from him, who is the Jiva, how did he come about are the various questions which he enquires upon. Through a systematic study of Vedanta he enquires the truth of himself, the world and Ishwara which is all a later exercise. - 11 -

Quotes It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity. Albert Einstein The real problem is not whether machines think but whether men do. B. F. Skinner One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man. Elbert Hubbard Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI The system of nature, of which man is a part, tends to be selfbalancing, self-adjusting, self-cleansing. Not so with technology. E. F. Schumacher Technology is always a two-edged sword. It will bring in many benefits, but also many disasters. Alan Moore

Vedanta Sandesh

Wandering in Himalayas


So sing the Rishis. But man turns a deaf ear to all such wise words. Why? He is dragged down by the tightening hold of gold and worldly pleasure on his heart, wheedling him away from spiritual practices. The sinful not only discountenance but positively hate good deeds and acts of penance. Personally, I have had both the good fortune and the misfortune of seeing Europeans immersing themselves in the Ganga and wellborn educated Hindus sporting in the Gangotri Valley without touching the holy water or visiting a single temple on the banks of the Ganga. From Gangotri to Kedarnath it is about 115 miles, and from Rishikesh to Kedarnath it is 130. The way from Gangotri to Kedarnath is difficult but beautiful. On the way travellers have to negotiate a pass called Pavvali, more than 10,000 feet above sea level. the mountain here is covered on all sides with lovely forests where one may come across fine birds and flowers rarely met with elsewhere even in the Himalayas.

32 Excerpts from the Travel Memoirs of Param Poojya Swami Tapovanji Maharaj

Enraptured by the beauty of the flowers and the songs of the birds, I have often spent hours here forgetting all the toil and the fatigue of the climb. The view that one gets from the top of the pass is uncommonly beautiful. During my first ramble I enjoyed the wonderful sight with all the zest of a schoolboy. To the north, there is the unending line of silver mountains; to the south, down to the borders of Hindustan, are rows of hills black-green with vegetation; and above the pass rise peaks that stand massive and serene as if in quite contemplation. Once you cross this, not very long pass, you reach a well-known holy place called Triyuginarayana. There is still evidence to show that this spot also was once a favourite resort of Rishis. The Mahabharata states that Yudhishthira and his companions, on the way to Badrikashram, journeyed over this region. The sight of such holy places associated with ancient sages cannot fail to evoke sublime thoughts in the mind of any Hindu. Here also, there is a temple where regular worship is conducted by priests. Descending some distance and ascending again along the bank of the Ganga, the path proceeds in the direction of Kedarnath. The forests and the streams and the heaps of rocks at this place seem to join in a harmony, a constant hymn of praise to the Creator, whose greatness the common man realizes not. Gourikunda, a place on the bank of the Ganga on the way to Kedarnath, deserves special mention here. it derives its name from a number of pools which are always full of hot water. the sulphur springs are a blessing to the pilgrims in this very cold climate. There is a story which seeks to explain the presence of hot springs in the locality. It is said that Sree Shankara was once proceeding towards Kedarnath with his disciples. The disciples found it extremely difficult to bathe in the very cold water of the Ganga and perform their ablutions. Taking pity upon them, the master willed that hot springs should appear, and immediately hot water began to gush forth and form itself in a number of pools. In Vidyaranyaswami's biographical work on Shankara, called Shankar Digvijaya, there is a reference to this incident.

- 13 -

If nothing is ever created, world is unreal and only absolute is real always


and at all times, how come this world feels so real? It is seen as real, it is felt as real and so easily concluded by everyone to be real. How that can be?

Swamini Vidyananda

When you sleep, a whole new world appears as if right in front of you. It has many objects, which can be seen and touched, many other beings, who behave as if consciously, and the most amazing part - you also as if become another person participating in this dream! The consciousness of the dreamer himself becomes the whole dream, and it also as if limits itself to be “me� of my dream! It is our experience of almost every night, so we used to see this as a trivial thing. But stop and think about it, you have an amazing thing happening every few hours


- your consciousness magically creates (although nothing is being created actually) many objects, and one of these objects it makes very special - you start to think of it as your own self. I myself create a whole world with myself in it.

The whole creation appears to have emerged from the pure undivided cosmic consciousness, as a dream appears in the consciousness of the sleeping person. The universe, with everything which can be found in it, is in fact the eternal effulgent infinite nondual consciousness, which itself becomes the knowable object, the subject who sees and knows that objects, and even the process of knowing of the object by the subject. There was, is and will be

Adhyatmic Teachings of Guru Vasishtha to Sri Ramji

nothing besides that pure Consciousness. With objects of the world or without these objects, the pure Consciousness remains the infinite, and there is no real transformation into any of these. Creation happens merely by the creative potential inherent in the pure Consciousness, without real change.

There are fourteen planes of existence, each with its own types of inhabitants, with food suitable for them, and with everything requred for their existence. And all these are the manifestations of the creativity inherent in the pure Consciousness. This pure Consciousness is Sat-Chit-Ananda, which means it is existence and consciousness at the same time, as one. When this Vedanta Sandesh

Consciousness thinks “I am light”, sources of light like sun, moon, stars and fire become instantly created, because consciousness and existence are the same. So also with space, time, air, water and earth. And these elements continue to act one upon another, as experiencer and experience, and the entire creation comes into being like ripples on the surface of the ocean. They are so interwoven and mixed up that they cannot be extracted from one



the cosmic

dissolution. All these material appearances are changing, only reality remains

The Truth of the Creation

unchanged. Since all this happens in Consciousness, all these appearances possess the quality of the knowable; at the same time there arises the cosmic knower.



itself becomes its

own knowable

and the knower.

When such a



notion “I am a jiva”

arises in the


F u r t h e r



ego and faculty

of discrimination

(intellect), after

that - the mind.

In this process

there is no need



instrumental or

material causes,

all is of the

essential nature



and countless

forms arise and

disappear like


d r e a m .

in a




Everything is nothing but the pure Consciousness. Everything in dream is perceived and so may be called as existing, but they don’t exist without that consciousness which supports the whole dream. So their reality is borrowed from that consciousness, and they cannot be said to really exist. Same thing with this created world, which is created like one creates castles in a dream. Everything is nothing but pure Consciousness.

Creation is neither real nor it been really created. All this is mere appearance like the forms seen in empty space, they owe their reality to their substratum, cosmic Consciousness, which alone is real. -7-

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Vedanta Sandesh

Saving of Takshak & Indra

Story Section n o p u e c On e ... m a ti

King Parikshit, the grandson of Pandavas, was killed by Takshak, the king of snakes. When Janmejaya, Parikshit’s son grew up and became king, he decided to avenge his father’s death. Along with Rishi Uttank, Janmejaya did yagnya for the end of all snakes. Rishi Uttank would say some mantra and offer the snakes to the fire “swaha”. Tens of hundreds of snakes would come and fall into the burning fire. The yagna went on for many days. A group snakes that were still alive went to their king Takshak for help. Takshak knew the yagna was to kill him to avenge King Parikshit’s death. However, instead of helping the other snakes, he went to Lord Indra to seek refuge. Indra granted him asylum. As the yagna proceeded more and more snakes were sacrificed every time Rishi Uttank said “swaha”. Meanwhile the pull of the mantras could be felt by Vasuki, the snake that helped devas and asuras during samudramanthan. He went to his sister Jaratkaru for help. “Sister, you have to help us. The pull of the mantras is too strong for me. I feel like I am on fire, and I can only imagine the plight of the other snakes. According to Brahma, your son Asteek will save our clan. Please send him to Janmejaya’s yagna and ask him to stop.” “Asteek is but a mere boy. How can he stop the yagna?” Jaratkaru asked. “Asteek may be young but he is very knowledgeable and knows all the vedas. When you were married, Brahma had predicted your son would save our clan. Do not worry, send Asteek.” Jaratkaru agreed and sent Asteek to Janmejaya. Asteek was not allowed to enter the yagna. So he began to sing praises of King Janmejaya. Hearing his melodious voice, the King met with him. Asteek began to sing the Vedas and the Mahabharata. Janmejaya was impressed. “I am impressed with you and will give you in gift whatever you ask. Please ask for anything, son.” In the meanwhile on the yagna floor, Uttank was chanting mantras to bring in Takshak, but to no avail. Then an informant informed that Takshak had taken refuge with Indra and was being protected by him. Uttank was furious; he chanted mantra, “Indray Takshakay swaha”. Meaning, I offer Takshak, along with Indra to the fire. Both Indra and Takshak began to descend towards the sacrificial fire. Asteek asked Raja Janmejaya to stop the sacrifice and the yagna. Janmejaya having given his word to Asteek to ask anything had to keep his word and stop the Yagna. Asteek chanted mantras to slow the descent of Indra and Takshak. With the yagna called off, Takshak and Indra were thus saved. - 17 -

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Vedanta Sandesh

Nbibtijwsbusj!Dbnq-!Joepsf; A five days Vedanta Camp was organized at Vedanta Ashram just prior to Mahashivratri Parva. Devotees from different parts of the country joined - which included Lucknow, Vadodara, Mumbai, Bharuch, Bhubaneshwar and Indore. The subject matter of the discourse series were Advaita Makaranda and Gita Chapter 14. Poojya Guruji took the Adv Mak. sessions, P.Swamini Amitanandaji took the Gita classes, P.Swamini Samatanandaji took the Meditation and Chanting sessions. P. Swamini Poornanandaji who handles kitchen and Mandir was down with cold, but she kept directing various matters nicely. The camp was overall very satisfactory, and everyone went highly inspired & happy - this came out in their statements on the final day in the Guru Dakshina Program.

Nbibtijwsbusj!Dfmfcsbujpot-!Joepsf This year the Mahashivratri was on 17th Feb. This is one of the biggest festival at Vedanta Ashram. We have Rudrabhisheka at different times a day, followed by a special jhanki on some particular theme. The giant Shiv-Linga on the terrace is opened for darshan on this day for the general public too. On this were the Sanyas Deeksha Anniversaries of P. Swamini Amitanandaji and P. Swamini Poornanandaji. As such they performed the first puja, early in the morning. Siddhartha Arora (Oxford, UK) joined the two motherly Swaminijis too. The second puja was done by a newly wed couple from Ahmedabad - Tanmay & Virali Patel. The last late night puja was done by many devotees together - Col & Mrs Krishn Rai, Ajitbhai & Manojbhai, businessmen from Gujarat, Chandrashekhar & Smt Krishna Agrawal - from Mumbai, and Smt Prabhavati Sharma - from Indore. The jhanki was of Anala-skandh. It was of a pillar of fire, with awesome lightening effects specially made for the occasion by Mayank Arora.

Tbozbt!Effltib!pg!Txbnj!Btbohboboeb; Brahmachari Ram (Vladimir Danchenko) was given Sanyas Deeksha by Poojya Guruji on Mahashivratri day. There were a series of steps for this. First the Yagnopavita, then Viraja Homa, and finally the Preshoschara and Yogapatta. He will now be known as Swami Asangananda Saraswati. He has since left for Russia.

Hjub!Hzbob!Zbhob-!Wbepebsb; A week long Gita Gyana Yagna by Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji was organized at Atmajyoti Ashram, Vadodara from 22nd to 28th Feb. The pravachan texts were: Gita Chapter 3 and Upadesha Saram. Two meditations sessions were also held.

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Vedanta Sandesh

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It Couldn’t Be Done Somebody said that it couldn’t be done, But, he with a chuckle replied That “maybe it couldn’t” but he would be one Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.

So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin On his face. If he worried he hid it. He started to sing as he tackled the thing That couldn’t be done, as he did it.

Somebody scoffed: “Oh, you’ll never do that; At least no one we know has done it”; But he took off his coat and he took off his hat, And the first thing we knew he’d begun it.

With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin, Without any doubting or quiddit, He started to sing as he tackled the thing That couldn’t be done, and he did it.

There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done, There are thousands to prophesy failure; There are thousands to point out to you, one by one, The dangers that wait to assail you.

But just buckle right in with a bit of a grin, Just take off your coat and go to it; Just start to sing as you tackle the thing That cannot be done, and you’ll do it

Vedanta Sandesh

Satsang at Bharuch : A satsang by Poojya Swamini Amitanandaji is being organized at the big & spacious residence of Sh Manojbhai, a well-known buisinessman of Bharuch city. They will honour Poojya Swamini on her Sanyas Deeksha day (date wise). She will give a pravchan to the devotees there and there will be lunch for all.

Gita Gyana Yagna, Lucknow : A week-long Gita Gyana Yagna by Poojya Guruji will be organized at the Hari om Mandir, Lal Baug, Lucknow from 11th to 17th Mar 2015. The subject matter of the discourse series will be Gita Chapter 6 and Kathopanishad 2-3.

Hanuman Chalisa Satsang, Indore : The Mar’15 edition of Hanuman Chalisa Satsang will be organized at the Sankaracharya Sabhagruh, at the Vedanta Ashram, Indore by Poojya Guruji on the 29th Mar (last Sunday of the month). Poojya Guruji will possibly take the third chaupayi of the chalisa in this satsang.

Gita Gyana Yagna, Bhubaneshwar : The first week-long Gita Gyana Yagna will be organized at the Shivananda Ashram Satsang Hall at Bhubaneshwar from 11th to 17th April by Poojya Swamini Samatanandaji. The subject-matter of the discourse series will be Gita Chapter 1 and Kathopanishad 1-1. The discourses will be in Hindi. She will also be visiting the famous Jagannath Temple at Puri.

Gita Gyana Yagna, Jalgaon : A week-long Gita Gyana Yagna will be organized at the Dutta Mandir, Jalgaon from 14th to 20th Apr 2015. The subject matter of the discourse series will be Gita Chapter 4 and Kathopanishad 2-1.

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Mar 2015 issue of Vedanta Sandesh, the English monthly eMagazine of International Vedanta Mission, containing inspiring and enlightening art...

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Mar 2015 issue of Vedanta Sandesh, the English monthly eMagazine of International Vedanta Mission, containing inspiring and enlightening art...

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