Speech delivered by SriSwami Sivanandaji Maharaj on the 26th December 1954, at Sivanandashram,Rishikesh, for the celebration of the 34th birthday of Sri SwamiVenkatesanandaji.
Published by the
DIVINE LIFE SOCIETY (MAURITIUS BRANCH)
World Wide Web (WWW) Edition : 2000
WWW site: https://www.dlshq.org/
This WWW reprint is for free distribution
The Ideal of a Sadhaka
To have such a fiery renunciation and the spirit of service: what is it due to? There are people of 50 and 60 who do not get such ideas. What is it that made Swami Venkatesananda renounce the world and adopt this life? That is, I think, good Samskaras and virtuous qualities. He had been a Sanyasi in the previous birth, leading the divine life, leading a Sattwic life on the banks of the Ganges, studying the Upanishads, Brahma-Sutras and Gita. I am not saying this to glorify him; but to point out to you that here is an example before you. Every one of you should, in this life, try to do virtuous deeds, practise Ahimsa, Satyam and Brahmacharya, to have aspiration–intense aspiration–and burning Vairagya. You may not have it, but you will have to cultivate it by Satsanga, study, enquiry into the nature of the Self, reflection. That is your foremost duty.
These people may or may not deliver lectures. Look at Sri Krishna Ashram of Gangotri; the very life of such people you will have to watch–their simple food, simple living, their love of Japa, Kirtan and meditation, and their Vairagya. Vairagya is the greatest wealth, the real wealth, which weans the mind away from the objects of the world, which is a strong weapon to cut off all the attachments that you have for the world. For such a man of Vairagya, there is no world, no object of sense-enjoyment can attract him. When you become a district-judge, you rejoice; when you get a little thing of this world, you rejoice; when you have accumulated a little bank balance, you rejoice; but look at these people: they know that you cannot have eternal satisfaction in these objects but that you can have it only in the Atma, the Innermost Self that resides in the chambers of your heart.
Jyotishaamapi tat jyotih tamasah paramuchyate
Jnaanan Jneyam Jnaanagamyam hridi sarvasya vishthitam
(That, the Light of all lights, is said to be beyond darkness; knowledge, the knowable and the goal of knowledge, seated in the hearts of all.)
These things of the world do not attract them, because they have got the spiritual wealth of good Samskaras, through enquiry and reflection. You must possess Vairagya which will lead you to the attainment of the Atma, the inexhaustible spiritual wealth.
But you do not have aspiration! The mind is full of evil tendencies. You may be endowed with a little talent; and you will be puffed up. The mind is veiled. There is Avarana. In spite of your intellectual faculties and talents, you will not be able to understand and realise the Universal, Cosmic, Supreme Being, whose nature is Satchidananda. You can get many Oxford University graduates, but not many Jivanmuktas who have realised the Self–that is the supreme veiling power of Maya. You know; yet you will not be able to understand it! There is something beyond these senses, mind and intellect; the Supreme Soul, full of Bliss, the only Reality! How many educated people have understood this, and are trying to realise it? How many have got even an aspiration to realise it? That aspiration is the real wealth.
Aspiration. Renunciation. Meditation. These will make you a king of kings, emperor of emperors kaupeenavantah khalu Bhagyovantah. Very few have realised this, and very few are attempting to realise this. Because, they are satisfied with the little toys of this world. They have not got the supreme subtle Vichara-Buddhi which is the greatest wealth of man. That comes through selfless service, study, meditation, enquiry, Satsanga. Nobody wants this! How many people want the wealth of the Atma? How many are attempting to possess these qualifications which are necessary?
How many intellectual people try to sit in Padmasan and do Japa and meditation? People don’t know what Padmasan is! They do not know what Prana is, nor the relation between Prana and the mind and the will. They want to become scholars. Their mind will run in that direction only. Their goal is an American degree. If a doctor becomes an “America-returned” specialist, he will get Rs. 32 as his visiting fees. God has given you an intellect. You must understand the magnitude of human suffering. What is the nature of this world? What is the mind? Ask yourself. Then only will you become a great man. He is a great man who tries to possess Vairagya, who tries to practise the Sadhana-Chatushtaya. Equip yourself with Viveka, Vairagya, Shat-Shampat and Mumukshutwa. What is Viveka? People do not know. They will deliver lectures on engineering! Maya will make your mind work along the external grooves. It is its duty. Maya hides the real and makes the unreal appear as real. So, you want only external things.
Ye hi Samsparsaja Bhogao Duhkha-yonaya Eva Te
Adyantavantah Kaunteya Na Teshu Ramate Budhah.
(The enjoyments that are born of contacts are only generators of pain, for they have a beginning and an end, O Arjuna; the wise do not rejoice in them.)
The pleasure that is derived through contact of sensual objects is verily the womb of pain. You will have to meditate upon this; then only will you get the discriminating intellect, which will make you bold with the power that is born of the wisdom of the Self. Cultivate discrimination and dispassion. That only will make you bold. Otherwise, moving along the sensual grooves, you will lose everything.
God has given you this chance–this human birth–to rise above sensual things and to realise the goal of life. How many of you are attempting to do so? Mere study of the scriptures will not do. You can talk. But, have you got that burning Vairagya, the burning aspiration, which Lord Buddha had, which Raja Gopichand had? Then only can you become the king of kings. If you do not attempt to possess these, then you fail in your duty.
You forget this truth. It is difficult to give up, to renounce these sensual objects. But, if you are sincere, the path will be easy; it is easy for those who resort to Satsanga, who close their eyes and make a little enquiry: “What is this world, what is the goal of life, what is mind?” Only such enquiry will lead you to everlasting peace. Very few people do this. You will have to generate these Samskaras now, just as Venkatesanandaji did–and so he has come here.
This clearly proves there is rebirth. You come down here with your Samskaras. You wanted to become an engineer; God has given you birth that will enable you to fulfil your ambition. But this will not give you satisfaction. In your old age you will suffer from all sorts of diseases and lead a miserable life. Your mind is full of evil Vasanas. How many selfless acts have you done?
How many people try to do selfless service? All are selfish. Close your eyes and practise self-analysis and find out for yourself what are the various kinds of impurities that are lurking in the mind, and what are the good qualities that you are possessing.
“Amanitwam Adambhitwam Ahimsa Kshaantiraar javam,
Acnaaryopaasanam Saucham Sthairyam Aatmavinigrahah.
Indriyaartheshu Vairaagyam Anahamkaara eva cha.
(Humility, unpretentiousness, non-injury, forgiveness, uprightness, service of the teacher, purity, steadfastness, self-control, dispassion, egolessness, perception of the evil of birth, death, old age, sickness and pain.)
Are you trying to cultivate these virtues? Even to possess one virtue, and give up the little tea-habit, how difficult it is! How many good acts have you done today? Which evil quality is troubling you? You must know. That is the thing which will make you a real man, a Superman.
How many of you are keeping the spiritual diary? What is your spiritual progress, compared with the previous year’s? These are the things that matter. He is the greatest man, a real sovereign and emperor who is striving to answer these questions. He may not possess any wealth or treasury; but he who possesses dispassion, discrimination, serenity, spirit of selfless service, spirit of sharing with others what he has–he is the greatest man. Man is generous to himself, He can spend any amount on the saree of his daughter; but his heart is very small, because he has not cultivated the spirit of charity. He cannot share with others what he has. He closes the doors and takes first-class Bourn-Vita.
To his friends he may give a little. To servants he will not give even water! Such is the nature of the great man who has got a number of factories! Analyse yourself. You have a small heart, and a small intellect. Your world consists of only yourself and four or five relatives, and perhaps a few friends who will help you when you are in difficulties. No. You must have a large heart. You must become one with the entire mankind. You must share with others what you have. Every day, as soon as you get up, ask yourself: “How many good actions was I able to do yesterday?” and resolve to excel the previous day in doing good to others. Thus would you evolve rapidly.
Practise patience, tolerance and endurance. These are the qualities you will have to develop. Then you can become fearless. He has practised these already; so they have become the basic traits in him. If you cultivate these qualities and acquire the spiritual wealth, whatever you want God will give you. Spiritual wealth alone will make you king of kings. You will be freed from all sorrows when you see the One Common Consciousness everywhere. You must have Sarvatma-Buddhi. Then you will be free from sorrow, pain and delusion. Then you will enjoy supreme satisfaction, perennial joy and immortality. That is the goal.
The little sensual pleasure is no pleasure at all. When there is a patch of eczema, you scratch yourself and seem to enjoy it. Later is bleeds, and you suffer from intense pain. Similar is the case with the pleasure derived from sensual objects here. You must have a bold understanding to ask yourself: “Is this really pleasure?” and arrive at the conclusion that it is no pleasure at all. Study the phenomenon of deep sleep; that itself will give you the knowledge that you can get real joy and peace only when you go beyond the objects of this world. In deep sleep, there are not objects, and there is no objective enjoyment. Yet, you enjoy great bliss and peace there. You say: “I slept well; I enjoyed my sleep; but I did not know anything.” In spite of the absence of the sensual objects, you got the homogeneous experience of bliss. This joy is not to be had in the sense-objects. The third cup of milk produces retching and vomiting. If it is really pleasure-giving, it ought to give you that homogeneous experience, eternal and everlasting. It is only to the dull-witted, gross persons that the worldly objects appear to be pleasurable. For a man of discrimination, it is no pleasure at all.
Real happiness you can have through meditation, with a pure, concentrated mind, filled with Sattwa. People may write articles and theses; but how to convert Rajas into Sattwa? No one knows this. Nobody practises introspection. As soon as you get up, you put on your suit and go to the office. In the evening you go to the club and at night go to sleep. Where is time for you to introspect? Only regular and systematic introspection will enable you to control the mind; and only he who has controlled the mind will be able to enjoy real happiness. Only when the mind is filled with Sattwa, you can have concentration of mind. In a Sattwic mind alone does real Atmic enquiry arise. He alone can discover the answer to the question: “What is my real essential nature?”
Are you the body? No. The body is a perishable object made of five elements; so you are distinct from the body. Similarly, you are not the Prana, and you are not the mind, either. In dream the idea of the body does not exist, and yet you exist; in deep sleep even the mind vanishes, and yet you exist. When there is great fear or shock, the mind does not function. Therefore, it cannot be the ever-intelligent Atma. These are the enquiries that you should pursue. Regular introspection, Japa, Kirtan, meditation, Atmic enquiry,–only these will make you strong and really wealthy.
It is your important duty to try to realise the Self in this life itself. This is your foremost duty. This only can remove your worries, cares, anxieties and make you blissful at all times, under all conditions, and all kinds of environments.
Meditation is very difficult. Before attempting to meditate really, you should equip yourself with the virtues enumerated under Yama-Niyama. Be truthful. Practise non-injury. Practise Brahmacharya. These are all the things that you will have to cultivate, little by little. If you are earnest and sincere, everything will become easy.
Have a programme of life. Know what is the real goal. Do not imagine, “When I retire, I will be able to do Japa and meditation.” When all your energy is squeezed out, you will not, in your old age, be able to sit even in Padmasan for a few minutes. When you are young, you must meditate, and practise enquiry. Study Yoga-Vasishtha, Viveka-Chudamani. Yoga-Vasishtha will raise you to supreme Brahmanhood and make you the real king of kings. He who is full of desires is a beggar of beggars; he is a slave of the senses, slave of the Indriyas, slave of emotions. Try to rise above all these and then you can attain to the realisation of oneness or unity, and realise the fearless Atman.
The Atman is fearless. There is no anxiety, no worry, no misery in the Self, where there is neither east, nor west, neither south nor north. In the Self there is neither hunger nor hotel, no old age or death; no Tuesday or Monday. He is Sat-Kama and Sat-Sankalpa. Only if you attain this Atman will you be free. That is your essential nature. Tat Twam Asi, you are That, my dear children.
But the realisation of this Truth, Tat Twam Asi, is not so easy. By selfless service you will have to purify your mind of the dirt which has accumulated in it; and then steady the mind through Upasana, and through the Grace of the Lord the veil (Avarana) will be removed. This, our Venkatesanandaji has done.
When we celebrate the Birthday of Venkatesanandaji, we are celebrating the Birthday of the Supreme Being. We worship, we remember the One Common Consciousness which, through the veiling power of Maya, appears as all these,–like the blueness in the sky, like a snake in the rope. You will have to enquire. You have been overwhelmed by these little appearances, by these names and forms; there is an ocean of peace, Satchidananda, behind these. Eko Devah Sarvabhuteshu Gudhah. That One Supreme Consciousness is hidden in all these beings, like butter in milk. He who is able to see the one Light of lights, he alone really sees. Otherwise he is blind. Study the Upanishads, Atma-Bodha, Tattwa-Bodha. Cultivate reverence to teachers, reverence to saints, reverence to Sadhus. They only can redeem you. The Sanyasin is Sakshat Narayana Himself. He who is able to infuse into you discrimination, has placed you under a debt of gratitude to him, which you cannot repay in millions of lives. Your mind runs along the sensual grooves. He who is able to turn your mind away from the sensual grooves–you cannot very easily repay the debt you owe him. He who is able to infuse into you a little aspiration and to turn your mind slightly from the sensual objects,–you cannot repay without Sadhana the debt you owe him. Such are the people who wear this gerua cloth. Glory to these worthy children of Sankaracharya, Dattatreya, Sanaka, Sanandana and Sanatkumara. He who is not able to understand the one all-pervading Presence, whose mind runs along sensual grooves, is a burden upon earth, however great he is intellectually, and however wealthy he may be. He who is not filled with discrimination and dispassion is a burden upon earth. But he who is able to turn the mind from the sense-objects, who is devoted to the Omnipresent Indweller, is a saint. He is a saint who has understood the real significance of the Four Mahavakyas: Prajnanam Brahma, Aham Brahmasmi, Tat-Twam-Asi, Ayam Atma Brahma. You are not this small being of 5’4″, with all sorts of cravings, Vasanas and Trishnas (these have made a beast of you), but Tat Twam Asi–thou art That Satchidananda Atman. Only he who has not understood this runs after the sensual pleasures which appear to taste like nectar in the beginning, but eventually turn out to be poisonous.
Understand the magnitude of human suffering. Understand what this world can give you–only a little sensation, titillation of the nerves. If you waste your life in these little things, how foolish you are! You have forgotten the goal of life. One anna of pleasure is mixed with fifteen annas of pain. Can you recognise this as pleasure?
So many virtues have to be cultivated. So many scriptures have to be studied, not only for the sake of knowledge and understanding, but for the sake of practice. Remember: “Vihaaya Kamaan yah Sarvaan Pumaamscharati Nihsprihah, Nirmamo Nirahankaarah. Sa Shaantimadhigachchati, Indriyartheshu Vairagyam Anahamkara eva cha, Janmamrityu-Jaravyadhi Duhkha Doshanudarshanam” (The man attains peace, who, abandoning all desires, moves about without longing, without the sense of mine and without egoism, indifferent to the objects of the senses, reflecting on the evil of birth, death, old age, sickness and pain.) Are you keeping these as your ideals before you? He who is free from cravings and temptations, he alone will enjoy peace. Your endeavour must be daily to find out “How much Ahamkara and Mamakara have I got?” You will have to repeat these formulas every second and annihilate desires, Ahamkara and mineness. Then you will enjoy real peace.
Are you attempting all this? Have you got this ideal before you? What are the obstacles? When you want to eradicate I-ness and mine-ness, you must feel within and have devotion to the ideal of Atmic realisation. Keep the goal always before you. Then comes control of Indriyas. The man who has controlled the Indriyas gets Supreme Peace. This is the real science. This is the Brahma Vidya taught by Uddalaka to Swetaketu, by Yajnavalkya to Maitreyi. These Upanishadic truths must enter your very bones and nerves. Then you will have selflessness, egolessness, desirelessness, Vasanalessness, Trishnalessness. Then only can you be called a human being.
God has given you a chance. When you have strength, knowledge, beauty, health, etc., and when you have been provided with books, teachers–everything–if you do not attempt for Self-realisation, then God is not to be blamed.
People have begun to ask: “Where is God?” He is everywhere. It is absurd to ask for proof of the existence of God. Who created the mind with its several faculties? Who pumps blood in your heart? Who causes the peristaltic movements? He is the All-pervading Essence. He is hidden in all these things, like oil in the sesame seed, like butter in milk, like electricity in the wires. God is Swatah-Siddha. The mother says: “Here is your father”–you don’t ask her for further proof. Similarly, you will have to repose faith in the words of the scriptures and the sages. God is everywhere; He is in the Light, in the Sun, in the Moon, in the Stars, in every speck of creation.
He who is sincere, who has aspiration, he will realise God. Every man is selfish. Therefore, Shastras say that you must do charity. By charity you purify yourself and you recognise the all-pervading Atman. You grow in unity and oneness. Charity gives rise to knowledge of the oneness, the unity of Consciousness.
There is time yet, if you start doing the right thing from this very moment. But you must apply yourself seriously to Sadhana. How many of you are getting up at 4 o’clock in the morning and contemplating upon questions like: “What is the world in Infinity?” If you are attempting to have knowledge of Infinity, will you waste your time in reading newspapers? No. Even an attempt at the realisation of the Self raises you to Brahmaloka. Actual realisation takes you beyond sorrow, once for all; Tarati Shokam Atmavit. Such a man becomes Brahman Himself: Brahmavit Brahmaiva Bhavati. He enables others to cross the ocean of Samsara: Sa Tarati sa Lokan Tarayati. All sorrows are banished from you even when you think of the Atman: Aham atma Nirakarah Sarvavyapi Swabhavatah.
Do you get this knowledge in your Universities? You should exert yourself to acquire this Brahma Vidya. That alone can make you bold. The whole wealth of the Lord belongs to you. All divine Aiswaryas, all Siddhis and Riddhis roll under the feet of the sage of Self-realisation. That you should attempt to become. Repeat formulas like: Ahan-atma Nirakarah Sarvavyapi Swabhavatah; Jnanamritam Suddham Atindriyoham. Even the mere repetition of these formulas makes you fearless and helps you to cross this ocean of Samsara.
There are three kinds of impurities in the mind. One is Mala (dirt) which is removed by the practice of Karma Yoga. The other is Vikshepa (tossing of the mind) which is removed by Bhakti, and the third is Avarana (veil of ignorance) which is removed by Jnana Yoga. Thinking, willing, feeling all these must be developed harmoniously; then only will there be integral development. That is your duty.
You should not merely study the scriptures and deliver lectures; but you should also discipline the mind. Whatever the Gita teaches, you should put into practice. Simply lecturing on Brahma Sutras will not do. If you are not given due respect and honour, you will lose your balance of mind. Not only study and lecturing; you should introspect, analyse and find out what virtues you should develop and what defects you should get rid of. That leads to Brahma Jnana,–not mere study. Develop humility. Cultivate the spirit of selfless service. You must watch for opportunities. If a man is lying down on the roadside, hungry and thirsty, you must run to him with a cup of milk. Otherwise your study of Brahma Sutras is useless. You should not bring in Vedantic arguments to support your Vedantic indifference here! One man said to the other: “My house is on fire; please come and help.” The latter replied: ‘Well, friend, this world is unreal. Where is house, where is fire?’ This is sheer foolishness. The world is unreal . . . for whom? For a Jivanmukta. If sugar is a little less in coffee, you will know whether the world is real or unreal for you. It is only when you discipline yourself through untiring selfless service, that Atma-Jnana will arise in you.
Venkatesanandaji is not a small boy. All the Ashram work he is doing. I must tell all this, so that other people may be inspired to emulate his example. He has not uttered a single word that could displease me. If I want to get some work done urgently, the next morning it is ready; he would do it sitting up the whole night. He has no ego. He will never say: “This is not good.” He is pleasing in manners. We should always try to please everybody. People generally bring in the story of the donkey, the old man and his son, in support of their argument that it is not possible to please everybody. This is wrong. I always try to please everybody, whatever be the nature of people. When a man comes to me, I find out what is good in him and try to please him. Though it may not always be possible, you must try to please all to the maximum extent open to you.
One old man wants to take Sanyas. He is still postponing it. “You have got Moha for your son,” I said. “Yes, I have,” he says! Look at the force of Samskaras. He who is living with Sanyasins in this birth will gather sufficient Samskaras now to take Sanyas next birth. One girl has come here; she has taken Sanyas. I thought she won’t be able to pull on and, therefore, refused to give her Sanyas. The Sanyas-spirit sometimes comes and goes. She observed Satyagraha; she did not take food for three or four days. Her mother came to be and said: “Give her Sanyas.” Her father also blessed her. Then I gave her Sanyas. Such is the force of good Samskaras. It won’t allow you to lead a worldly life. When spiritual Samskaras begin to take effect, it is like the atom bomb bursting.
Venkatesanandaji’s letters are full of honey. Our Professor Swami Sadanandaji is a great critic; and he is all-appreciation for Venkatesanandaji’s letters. They are preserved in the iron-safe by those who receive them. He does not even prepare a draft; he sits at the typewriter, and the letter is at once ready. No stenographer will be able to compete with him. Many are coming; but if I say one thing, they will write something else. That is one kind of “stenography”! But Venkatesanandaji; even if he hears once, it is quite sufficient for him, he will reproduce the speech beautifully. He has a very acute grasping power; there is no confusion in his brain. But for him all that I say,–not only I, but many others like Dr. Graham Howe, Prof. Burtt, Sri Satchidanandam Pillai, Major-General A.N. Sharma, and others who have delivered lectures here–would have been lost. He is a man to be adored.
I told Venkatesanandaji, when I was at Roorkee: “Don’t always refer to me as Gurudev, in your talks; just say Swamiji, that will do.” He said: “If I say ‘Swamiji,’ it does not express the Bhav of my heart; it creates an illusion of equality with Gurudev.” Then I allowed him to continue to refer to me as Gurudev.
The work he does, other people won’t be able to do. So many books and pamphlets are coming out of the press–all through his work only. He has written my day-to-day talks in Four Volumes, yet to be published; he has also written my life-sketch and the “Bhagavad Gita for Students” which is very much appreciated by all. He has performed much austerity, Tapas, in previous births also; and he has rendered selfless service to Yogis, sages and great people. This has taken the shape of his talents, his kindness, good qualities and good Samskaras. I have seen people here; when they have a little talent, their head swells. Whoever may come, I make him a lecturer, the cashier and most important man, in order to encourage him, the new inmate. But some people’s heads swell. Venkatesanandaji is not like that. He is humble and egoless. Similarly, Swami Chidanandaji also; therefore, everybody loves him.
He, Swami Chidanandaji and the others, are the people to continue the work of the Divine Life Society. Every man is useful; and Venkatesanandaji is useful in his own way. Just as in the body there are so many cells, tissues, etc., and life is sustained by their harmonious working, similarly if all of you work harmoniously, together, you can do grand service to the world.
He is overworked, and there is nobody to help him. The work he does is very great. During the All-India Tour, Venkatesanandaji was working day and night. He was given a small room in the Tourist Car. He had not even a proper place to sit and work. Yet he has produced the huge volume “Sivananda’s Lectures: All-India Tour.” But for him this book would not have come out at all. Saradanandaji also contributed a lot to this book. He used to ascend trees and buildings in order to take photographs. He is also working in his own way; and he is a genius. Thus is the work carried on by all these people. May God bless them all with health, long life, peace and Eternal Bliss!
Swami Sivananda and Swami Achintyananda
Swami Ramdas and Mother Krishna Bai
Bhagavan Satya Sai Baba
Dr. S. Radhakrishnan, ex-President of India
Maharshi Mahesh Yogi
Mr. V.V. Giri, President of India
Swami Muktananda Paramahamsa
H.H. Pope Paul VI
Swami Vireswarananda, President of the Ramakrishna Mission
Sri Ananda-mayi Ma
Swami Satchidananda of Mysore
Sri-la-Sri Bhaktivedanta Swami (Head of the Krishna Consciousness Movement)
The Ven. K. Dhammananda Thera, Chief Buddhist High Priest in Malaysia, and
Swami Pranavananda, President of the Divine Life Society’s Malaysia Branch
Zen Master Kyudo Nakagawa
Sant Kirpal Sing
Dr. Hugo Bergman of Jerusalem
Mr. C. Rajagopalachari, ex-Governor-General of India
Sister Daya Mata, President of the Self-realization Fellowship
Sri-la-Sri Pandrimalai Swamigal
Archbishop Gregorios of the Greek Orthodox Church
Yogini Indira Devi of California
Archbishop Selby-Taylor of Cape Town
H.H. Jagadguru Shankaracharya of Dwaraka
A Holy Avadhuta (naked ascetic) of the Himalayas
Sadhu Murugadas of Madras
Rev. George Nakora, President, Conference of the Methodist Church of Australasia
Yogi Shuddhananda Bharati of Madras
Bhikku Chaman Lal and Tibetan Lamas
Ma Aparna Devi of Calcutta
Yogi B.K.S. Iyengar
Swami Jyotirmayananda and Swami Lalithananda of Miami
Swami Prabhavananda of California
Master Charan Sing, of Beas
Swami Yogeswarananda of Yoganiketan, Rishikesh
Swami Omkarji of the Peace Mission
(left to right) Swami Venkatesananda, the Catholic Bishop Margeot, a Missionary from Bombay,
the Anglican Bishop Curtis, Swami Kritananda of the Ramakrishna Mission,–all in Mauritius
From left: Swami Sahajananda, Pranavananda, Satchidananda, Chidananda, Vishnudevananda and Venkatesananda
Mr. J. Krishnamurti–Gstaad, July 1969