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Self-Realization Fellowship Blog
SRF/YSS President Brother Chidananda Visits Europe and India — Final Posting
Nov 20, 2019
Self-Realization Fellowship/Yogoda Satsanga Society of India President Brother Chidananda traveled abroad to meet with devotees of Paramahansa Yogananda’s spiritual family in Europe and India. Accompanying Brother Chidananda on this trip were Brother Vishwananda (a senior monk and member of the SRF/YSS Board of Directors) and Brother Kamalananda.
Following are some highlights of his trip, with the most recent events posted at the top of the page.
Return to SRF International Headquarters, Mount Washington, Los Angeles
Brother Chidananda returned from his trip to Europe and India on November 17, arriving to a warm welcome from SRF monastics at Mount Washington, the international headquarters of Paramahansa Yogananda’s worldwide work.
Arriving at the Self-Realization Fellowship International Headquarters, Brother Chidananda is garlanded by Brother Saralananda, a member of the SRF/YSS Board of Directors.
As he progresses up the driveway of the SRF Administration Building, Brother Chidananda is showered with rose petals by the SRF monks residing at Mount Washington.
Brother Chidananda reaches the porch of the International Headquarters, receiving an enthusiastic welcome from SRF nuns. Brother Chidananda then thanked all present for the warm welcome home.
Visit to Mumbai, India
Brother Chidananda conducted a weekend program in Mumbai, Novermber 8–10, that included two public satsangas and a three-hour meditation with YSS devotees. The program was attended by more than 1,600 YSS members and friends, many of whom had traveled from other parts of India. This was Brother Chidananda’s first visit to Mumbai.
On November 8, the opening night of the three-day program in Mumbai, Brother Chidananda conducts a satsanga on the Kriya Yoga teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda.
Brother Chidananda meeting with volunteers at the Yogoda Satsanga Society Mumbai Center on November 9. That evening, Brother Chidananda leads devotees in a three-hour meditation that is attended by approximately 1,500 devotees.
Brother Chidananda greets a parent and child at the venue for the closing satsanga in Mumbai, November 10.
On the last morning of the Mumbai program Brother Chidananda delivers a closing satsanga on Yogananda’s teachings. His talk is livestreamed worldwide, and is available for viewing in full on our website.
Brother Chidananda holds up a copy of Paramahansa Yogananda’s poem “The Noble New,” which he is about to read to the audience before explaining the deep significance to be found in its inspiring language.
Brother Chidananda at the end of his talk, where he had pointed out that the three-day program on the Kriya Yoga teachings of the SRF/YSS path had been one of true satsanga: “fellowship with divine truth.”
Brother Chidananda shares a joyous moment with YSS Sunday school children during his visit to Mumbai. The children had just performed a play based on Paramahansa Yogananda's story about the great Indian saint Sri Chaitanya.
Visit to Hyderabad, India
Brother Chidananda conducted a weekend program in Hyderabad, Novermber 1–3, that included two public satsangas and a three-hour meditation with YSS devotees. Attendance numbered some 1,800 YSS devotees and friends.
Swami Ishwarananda, General Secretary of YSS, introduces Brother Chidananda at the opening satsanga of the weekend program.
Greeting YSS devotees and friends
Brother Chidananda shares the new commemorative coin honoring Paramahansa Yogananda. The Government of India released the coin three days earlier in a ceremony in New Delhi.
Opening satsanga, November 1, 2019, on Paramahansa Yogananda’s teachings of Kriya Yoga meditation
Opening satsanga, November 1, 2019
Brother Chidananda leads a three-hour meditation with YSS devotees, November 2, 2019, diving deeply together into the practice of the meditation techniques of the Kriya Yoga science, and enjoying the resultant stillness, peace, and joy.
A pranam to YSS devotees and friends at the closing satsanga, November 2, 2019. At right is Swami Smaranananda, YSS vice president. In his talk, Brother Chidananda discussed how to use meditation and the teachings of Kriya Yoga to maintain a divine connection while dealing with the material world.
Visit to Ranchi, India
Brother Chidananda had an extended stay at the Yogoda Satsanga Sakha Math, Ranchi, in late October. There he participated in administrative meetings, met informally with the monks and numerous devotees, and gave an inspiring satsanga on the deeper significance of Diwali, the Festival of Lights.
Arrival at the Yogoda Satsanga Sakha Math, Ranchi
YSS monastics offer flower petals in greeting.
Before the image of Paramahansa Yogananda under the Litchi Vedi. The Litchi Vedi is a sacred spot associated with Paramahansaji’s life: Here, beneath this large litchi tree, he frequently conducted outdoor classes with students of his boys’ school.
A tour of the new YSS printing equipment, which was recently acquired for printing the new edition of the Yogoda Satsanga Lessons.
Greeting the devotees and staff who serve in YSS’s printing plant
A tour of the area where the YSS Lessons are prepared for mailing to students throughout the Indian subcontinent
Brother Chidananda meets informally with a group consisting of sevaks (volunteers) who serve at the YSS Ranchi ashram and also staff of YSS schools. The setting is the Matri Mandir, a spacious hall hallowed by the memory of Sri Daya Mata, who often conducted satsangas here during her visits to India to develop Paramahansa Yogananda’s work in his motherland.
Lighting a candle in the Paramahansa Yogananda Smriti Mandir (memorial temple) to inaugurate Diwali celebrations
Brother Chidananda pranams to the assemblage before his public talk on Diwali.
More than 800 devotees, friends, and special guests attend the event, which took place on the grounds of the Yogoda Satsanga Sakha Math, Ranchi.
Brother Chidananda delivers his address on the deeper spiritual significance of Diwali.
With YSS monks on the spacious and lush grounds of the Yogoda Satsanga Sakha Math. In the background is the Paramahansa Yogananda Smriti Mandir.
Visit to Noida, India, October 15–20
From Frankfurt, Brother Chidananda travels to India, arriving in New Delhi on October 15. He spends the next few days at the nearby YSS Noida Ashram, holding two public events and also being interviewed by prominent Indian media networks.
Greeting devotees upon arrival at YSS Noida Ashram, early on the morning of October 15
On the evening of October 18, Brother Chidananda conducts a satsanga at the YSS Noida Ashram that is attended by some 1,400 YSS devotees.
Addressing the assemblage in Noida, October 18
On October 18 Brother Chidananda formally releases the Sinhala translation of Autobiography of a Yogi then presents copies to devotees from Sri Lanka (where this language is spoken).
While in Noida Brother Chidananda meets with national Indian media, including an interview by Doordarshan, a popular broadcasting television network.
On October 20 Brother Chidananda conducts a morning satsanga at the YSS Noida Ashram, which is attended by some 1,800 devotees. A similarly sized gathering was present the previous evening when Brother Chidananda led a 3-hour meditation at this same location.
Satsanga in Frankfurt, Germany, October 13
Brother Chidananda meets with an enthusiastic audience of around 800 SRF members and friends for a satsanga (informal talk).
Brother Kamalananda leads group chanting during the Frankfurt event.
Brother Chidananda speaking in Frankfurt
Satsanga in Milan, Italy, October 12
Brother Chidananda greets nearly 800 SRF members and friends gathered in Milan for satsanga. One of the main themes of his talk is how to “learn to live in the world without losing your divine connection.”
Brother Chidananda delivers his talk.
An appreciative audience assembled in Milan
Brother Kamalananda and the kirtan group of the SRF Milan Center lead the audience in devotional chanting prior to Brother Chidananda’s talk.
Brother Chidananda pranams to attendees in Milan, Italy, on October 12.
Departure From SRF International Headquarters
Brother Chidananda departs on his journey on October 9 from the SRF International Headquarters in Los Angeles. As he prepares to leave the Mother Center, nuns and monks shower him with rose petals and chant “Jai Guru!” (“Victory to the Guru”) during a joyful farewell.
Watch a short video of Brother Chidananda’s departure from SRF International Headquarters.
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