By Prakash (David) Falbaum, SVA Board Member
Our “Place of Bliss” grounds the Grace.It stands as a full-service yoga and meditation teacher training facility, as a retreat center, and as the local venue for Swami Nirmalananda’s Grace-filled teachings. Living in MN, I have only a few opportunities a year to visit the Ashram and be in the presence of Swami Nirmalananda. Every time, I have very deep experiences. I know that these experiences are fueled by Guru’s Grace, powerfully available to us all at Lokananda.
This Grace has given me everything. I started Svaroopa® yoga as a very contracted person. The more I am able to be in Swami’s presence, the less contracted I am. Her satsangs open me up the way Muktananda’s Shaktipat set him free, free to know himself as the One Self.
I have always yearned for the “More.” Until I encountered the teachings about Self-Realization in Swami Nirmalananda’s Svaroopa® Sciences, I felt incomplete. Even though I have a successful career and a wonderful family life, I felt worthless. When I was born, I was destined to be adopted out so was not held in my mother’s arms. Contraction began for me on Day 1. When I found Svaroopa® yoga, I had become almost an automaton. Yet everything changed when I took my first Svaroopa® yoga class. I got Shaktipat. It came through my local teacher, because Svaroopa® yoga teacher training and practices are empowered by the Grace of the Guru, from Nityananda through Muktananda, and through Swamiji. After that first Svaroopa® yoga class, I went home and walked my dogs. I felt as though I was walking on air. I felt that light.
I now know that I was noticing Kundalini beginning her work on me. More than five years later, at Swamiji’s August 14 Satsang, where her discourse focused on Baba’s Shaktipat, I felt more completely free, becoming more and more freed from the limitations of my mind. This deep clearing of contraction manifests in my ability to listen to other people, to let myself be known to others and to speak the Truth of this path to Self-Realization. My mind no longer has the power to inhibit the Truth I want share. The more yoga I do, the more I feel myself to be my Self. And it all happens at Lokananda, where Swamiji’s teachings and the deepening practices of our community are saturated with transformative Shakti.
During our annual SVA Board retreat, I attended Swami Sunday at Lokananda. We celebrated Baba’s Shaktipat anniversary. India gained independence from the British Empire on that same day in 1947. Baba’s name, Muktananda, means the bliss of moksha (freedom). When Swamiji spoke about the intersection of all these freedoms, I experienced a profound shift. Swami gave me Muktananda. At this satsang, I realized that I am Muktananda. Such experiences happen to me, to you, to our Svaroopa® sisters and brothers because we can come to trainings, retreats and other programs at Lokananda.
Join me in contributing to the third leg of our Capital Campaign for Lokananda. Since campaign began about a year ago, we have raised $100,000 of our $150,000 goal. To date, these generous contributions have supported the renovations and furnishings of our 130-year-old Lokananda. She shines! But she also needs a new roof now, and a maintenance reserve for those future capital repairs that are inevitable. Please open your heart as well as your wallet. Let us together complete this Capital Campaign for Lokananda now. Then, for ourselves and others to come, we can count on a place to be in the bliss that will fulfill the yearning that first pulled us on to this Svaroopa® Sciences path.
Click here to donate.