This talk by Paramahansa Yogananda was recorded at the Self-Realization Fellowship International Headquarters during an informal gathering on the occasion of his birthday — January 5, 1949. At this point in his life, the Guru’s outward mission to the world had been largely completed, and he had begun to withdraw more and more from public life. Freed from many organizational activities, he was able to remain for long periods completely immersed in the highest states of samadhi, or union with God. His talk preserved in this recording expresses the inspiration of that exalted state. Like a brilliant, multifaceted jewel, his consciousness reflects at different times throughout the talk the sweet love of God, His pure wisdom, the dynamic force of His infinite power.
Paramahansaji’s words on this occasion were characterized by a touching informality. Ever appreciative of the smallest acts of kindness, he begins by thanking the disciples for their loving remembrances of his birthday, reminding them of the divine Source of all friendship and all love. With illustrations from the Indian scriptures, humorous and instructive incidents from his own life, and the deep insights flowing from his direct perception of Truth, he goes on to show with vivid clarity that there is one great theme in this stupendous drama of creation, and a single purpose behind all that happens to us: to coax us to look beyond the illusions of this transitory life and discover the glory and the love of God.