The most auspicious Gita Week was observed at the Ashrams and a few branches of Divine Life Society of S.A. from 12 - 18 August 2022. Ganga Arati online and at Sivanandashram, Reservoir Hills commenced at 5:30pm daily, followed by Satsang. The daily Gita Week programme included melodious Bhajans & Kirtans in worship & adoration of Lord Krishna, Slokas from the Bhagavad Gita, readings from the Book Hindu Gods & Goddesses by Sri Swami Sivananda and poems from the book, Swami Sivananda In Pictures. Our Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda states, "The Gita is a source of power and wisdom. It strengthens you when you are weak and inspires you when you feel dejected and feeble. It teaches you how to resist unrighteousness and to follow the path of virtue and righteousness. The Gita is not merely a book or just a scripture. It is a living voice, carrying an eternally indispensable and vital message to mankind".
Sri Krishna Janmashtami was celebrated on Friday, 19 August 2022. The Janmashtami programme at Sivanandashram, Reservoir Hills commenced at 5:30pm and concluded at midnight. Our Divine Master describes his Ishta Devata in Lord Krishna & His Lilas as follows, "Lord Krishna was the highest incarnation of the great Vishnu. He was the unique and crowning incarnation of all. He was the world teacher. He was the one Lord of love. His divine form holds the heart of India captive in chains, even today. The Bhagavata, the Mahabharata, the Vishnu Purana—all proclaim with one voice that there was none to match Sri Krishna in beauty and elegance of form in all three worlds".
Gita Week will be observed at Sivanandashrams and some branches of Divine Life Society of S.A. from 12 - 18 August 2022. Ganga Arati at Sivanandashram, Reservoir Hills commences at 5:30pm daily, followed by Satsang.
Sri Krishna Janmashtami will be celebrated on Friday, 19 August 2022. The Janmashtami programme at Sivanandashram, Reservoir Hills commences at 5:30pm and concludes at midnight.
Divine Life Society of S.A. celebrated Varalakshmi Day on Friday, 5 August, 2022. In the book, Yoga Lessons for Children, our Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda states, "The Vedas describe Mother Lakshmi as the Goddess of riches. God manifests in the form of wealth. There is material as well as spiritual wealth. Mother Lakshmi provides us with both, but some think of Her as a symbol of material wealth only. It is true that She will grant us this if we desire. But we should pray to Her for something lasting, something more precious and worthwhile – it is spiritual wealth of God. Mother Lakshmi also gives joy. She makes life on earth bearable. Without Her, life on earth would be a journey of pain and suffering.
The 59th Mahasamadhi Anniversary of our Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda was observed on Thursday, 14 July 2022. On this sacred day,we paid tribute to a spiritual giant of the 20th century, who to a large extent, changed the course of spiritual history. A man amongst men and a jewel amongst saints, Sri Swami Sivananda touched millions of lives across the world. Sri Swami Sivananda, the saint of Rishikesh, India, the apostle of compassion, peace and human values, was a champion of the disadvantaged, oppressed, down-trodden and forlorn. The Master set the world ablaze with the practical unfoldment of his eloquent creed: “To be a cosmic friend and cosmic benefactor, to be a friend of the poor, forlorn, helpless and the fallen, is my creed. It is my sacred creed to serve the sick persons, to nurse them with care, sympathy and love, to cheer the depressed, to infuse power and joy in all, to feel oneness with each and every creature, and to treat all with equal vision”.
On this most auspicious day of 10 July 2022, we celebrated the 97th Birth Anniversary of one of the foremost Bhaktas and direct disciples of Sri Swami Sivananda, Pujya Swami Sahajananda. Satsangs were held at DLS Ashrams and branches. This report focuses on the online Satsang which began at 5.30pm.
As a young teacher, Sri Srinivasan's soul memory began to stir. He began awakening to his soul mission for this human birth and was drawn to seeking spiritual knowledge. He also began intensifying his spiritual practices. His spiritual journey was catapulted when destiny drew him to a Vedic bookshop in Durban and he was drawn to a book written by Swami Sivananda, whom he had never heard of. This book, Practice of Karma Yoga, teaches the importance of selfless service. Young Srinivasan had the inner realisation that Swami Sivananda was his Guru. When Pujya Swamiji learnt that there was a state of God-realisation, all his academic studies were renounced immediately for a higher life. Swami Sivananda's first injunction was to 'serve'. Thus began the young aspirant's journey to Sannyas and selfless service. It was also a life of spiritual success, rooted in Karma Yoga, and Guru-Bhakti Yoga.
Guru Purnima, the most auspicious day in the calendar of spiritual seekers, is celebrated the world over to worship and offer gratitude and appreciation to the Spiritual Masters for their guidance, spiritual wisdom and enlightenment. It is the day when seekers make fresh spiritual resolves. This day also marks the Birth Anniversary of the great sage, Sri Vyasa. We pay obeisance to the great sage for his tremendous service to humanity: he performed the awesome task of editing the four Vedas and writing the eighteen Puranas, the Mahabharata and the Srimad Bhagavatam. His legacy is priceless. On Guru Purnima Day, we pay obeisance also to all the Divine Incarnations, Brahma Vidya Gurus and Vedic Rishis, saints and sages for their inestimable contribution to the peace, harmony and spiritual evolution of the planet.
The launch of this most auspicious 41-day Sri Hanuman Chalisa recital took place on Saturday, 30 July 2022 via online audio stream as well an in-person Satsang at Sivanandashram, Reservoir Hills. The programme commenced at 5.30pm with Ganga Arati, followed by invocation, reading and the recital.
To celebrate International Yoga Day this year, Divine Life Society of S.A. Yoga Camp team had a special programme on Sunday, 19 Jun2 2022 to promote and increase awareness of this invaluable gift to mankind. The programme consisted of demonstrations and explanations on specific Hatha Yoga poses. These simple yet effective exercises are for each one to follow and to take up this ancient gift to mankind provided to us by Lord Siva and our ancient sages and seers. This year the theme is "Yoga for Humanity" because this priceless discipline is there for all of mankind to benefit. Yoga is a practice that combines physical, mental and spiritual pursuits to achieve harmony of the body and mind. The net result of Yoga is complete rejuvenation of the entire system of man. Who wouldn't want this?
The theme for the International Youth Day which was celebrated on 12 January 2022, was "It's all in the mind", a key teaching of Swami Vivekananda. On 16 June 2022, Youth Day was celebrated in South Africa. The theme: "Promoting sustainable livelihoods and resilience of young people for a better tomorrow".
The youth of Divine Life Society of South Africa arranged a special online programme on 16 June to celebrate this day. The programme included messages, short stories, meditation on the Peace Series, Bhajans & Kirtans, recital from the Ramayana, an audio message from Pujya Swami Sahajananda and musical & dance items by guest artistes.
In the book Enlightened Education, the Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda, had the following to say about youth: "The youth are the most precious treasure of the nation. Students are an important asset to the country, for leaders all over the land recognise that they are to guide the nation of tomorrow. The present generation of students are the potential leaders in all the different fields of national life of the future.