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Yogananda's Birthday Message 2022 (by Nayaswami Jyotish and Nayaswami Devi)

Nayaswami Jyotish and Nayaswami Devi are Ananda's spiritual directors. Recorded in the Temple of Light at Ananda Village.

Nayaswami Jyotish: "Hello, dear friends. Thank you for being a part of this wonderful work, or at least tuning into it. This January 5th is the birthday anniversary of our great Guru Paramahansa Yogananda. Really all of our life depends on the great gift of his wisdom, his joy and his love. He said that those three qualities especially were the ones that he manifested during this lifetime. And his coming to the West in 1920, as a young man began a wave of consciousness that changed the world. But I think more importantly for each of us, has changed our lives, have uplifted them and given them a direction. And we want to do everything we can, in remembrance of His birth into the world and into ultimately our consciousness to honor him, and to say, Happy Birthday Master."

Nayaswami Devi: "It was nearly 130 years ago, that Paramahansa Yogananda was born into this world. He was then Mukunda Lal Ghosh, born into a devout Hindu family, in the city of [Gorakhpur] in northern India. But his destiny was not to remain in India, even to remain a Hindu. His destiny was to change the consciousness of the world. He was invited in 1920, to leave India come to the west, and his great Guru Sri Yukteswar said to him, on the eve of his leaving India, he said forget you were born a Hindu but don't become an American, a Westerner, take the best of your brothers and sisters, of all people of all nations, and show them your true self, a child of God. And this is the path that we follow. We are neither Easterners nor Westerners, Hindus or Christians or Jews or Muslims. We are children of God, born in the same light as our great Guru Yoganandaji. And so, as this year unfolds, 2022 it may be a year of great challenges for you, for me for the whole world. But remember, Yogananda faced every obstacle in life, he said, there are no obstacles, there are only opportunities.

So this year, let us see it as a year of great spiritual opportunities that we might all grow deeper in God, deeper in our guru's blessings, and inner presence, and may we be able to share his great great consciousness in whatever capacity we can with everyone whom we meet. So, as Master said, the yogi must stand unshaken amidst the crash of breaking worlds. And so the worlds may break around us. That his followers of the great yogi who wrote his autobiography. Let us stand unshaken and be a source of strength and hope and courage to all when we meet. God bless you all."

Paramhansa Yogananda, born in 1893, was the first yoga master of India to take up permanent residence in the West. Yogananda arrived in America in 1920, and proceeded to travel throughout the United States on what he called his “spiritual campaigns.” Hundreds of thousands filled the largest halls in major American cities to see the yoga master from India. Yogananda continued to lecture and write up to his passing in 1952. Paramhansa Yogananda’s initial impact on western culture was truly impressive. But his lasting spiritual legacy has been even greater. His Autobiography of a Yogi, first published in 1946, helped launch a spiritual revolution in the West. Translated into more than a dozen languages, it remains a best-selling spiritual classic to this day. [Read free at https://dev.ananda.org/autobiography.] Yogananda brought the path of Self-realization and universal spirituality for daily life.

“Self-realization is the knowing in all parts of body, mind, and soul that you are now in possession of the kingdom of God; that you do not have to pray that it come to you; that God’s omnipresence is your omnipresence; and that all that you need to do is improve your knowing." As the means of attaining this exalted spiritual state Yogananda initiated his followers into the ancient technique of Kriya Yoga, which he called the “jet-airplane route to God.” The path of Kriya Yoga, which combines the practice of advanced yogic techniques with spirituality in daily life, can be learned at https://dev.ananda.org/kriya-yoga.