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Swami Chidanandaji's 60 Years in
Sivananda Ashram, Rishikesh

 

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Swami Chidananda had his first Darshan of Sri Swami Sivananda, and bowed down his head at the divine feet of the holy master in the afternoon of 19 May 1943. Swami Chidananda said, "It was the full moon day, Poornima, of the month of Vaishak, the holy anniversary of the enlightenment of Lord Buddha under the sacred Bodhi Tree at sacred Bodh Gaya. Since that moment up to this present moment, I have been only that, namely, a servant at the holy Master’s feet."

Yesterday, in Sivananda Ashram, we celebrated 60 years of Swami Chidananda as a disciple and servant of Gurudev. The Ashram held a programme starting with morning meditation attended by ashramites, devotees, and students of the Academy, where the morning prayers were chanted. Then, we had a beautiful Paduka Puja for Swamiji Maharaj where swamis and ashramites and devotees paid their respects to Swamiji by worshipping the Holy shoes worn by the Guru. Flowers and milk were offered to these sandals while hymns were sung by the Ashram Pujaris. After the holy ceremonies, kirtans were sung, and Swami Nirliptananda’s voice filled the hall with soulful devotion and sweetness to God and Guru.

Then, at 6 O’clock in the evening, Ganga arati was held in front of the large Ghat of the sacred river, where Swami Jivanmuktananda performed the Arati on this special occasion for Swami Chidananda Maharaj. Devotees and ashramites joined in the ceremonies. All worked together by arranging flowers and lights to be offered to Mother Ganga. Then, Swami Jivanmuktananda with the Ashram Pandit sang the divine hymns and invocation, and offered the lights and flowers to Mother Ganga with heartfelt devotion. It was a beautiful and divine atmosphere, elevating and inspiring the presence of God and Guru.

The full moon was shining for the evening Satsang, while Revered Swami Vimalananda shared stories of his forty years service to Swami Chidananda. It was inspiring to hear how in forty years he was blessed to live in the company of a saint.

Swami Premananda, with wit and sensitivity, shared with us his incomparable anecdotes of Swamiji whom he has known for fifty-five years. Swami Nirliptananda closed the evening Satsang by reminding devotees that it is the example of Swami Chidananda to be emulated.

Swami Chidananda sent prasad to all the devotees and ashramites. We could feel throughout the day his love to his Guru whom he has served since that blessed day.

It was a beautiful day to remember Swamiji as a diamond among Gurudev disciples. With a joyful heart the whole ashram celebrated Swamiji’s first darshan of Gurudev where he surrendered his life at the feet of his Guru. This was indeed a holy day for all ashramites and devotees of H.H Sri Sivananda Saraswati Maharaj.

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Last Updated: Sunday, 17-Oct-2004 08:45:30 EDT
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