The 71st Anniversary of Divine Life Society of South Africa was celebrated via our online Satsang programme on Sunday, 18 October 2020. There were 430 views.
Divine Life Society of South Africa was founded in 1949 by our Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda. He was one of the greatest of all modern saints. His teachings which are universal, practical, simple and timeless, have transformed the lives of countless people the world over, who have been searching for peace, happiness, comfort and above all, a higher truth in life. The Society's motto of "Serve, Love, Give, Purify, Meditate and Realise", encapsulates the principles that we as devotees of Divine Life Society of South Africa, try to follow.
The Master had written three letters to Pujya Swami Sahajananda to start the Divine Life Society in South Africa. According to the dates of these letters, the anniversary of the Society is celebrated every year on 5 June, 18 October and 11 November.
During Navaratri (literally meaning "nine nights") Earnest spiritual aspirants of Durga observe a fast or take milk and fruit only on all the nine days, or at least once in each of the three-day periods. Brahmins are fed and prayers are offered for the protection of health and property. Durga Puja is the greatest Hindu Festival in which God is adored as Mother. Hinduism is the only religion in the world which has emphasised to such an extent the motherhood of God. One's relationship with one's mother is the dearest and the sweetest of all human relations, Hence, it is proper to look upon God as mother.
Durga Puja or Navaratri is the most suitable occasion for doing intense Sadhana. These nine days are very sacred to Mother. Plunge yourself in Her worship. Practise intense repition of the Divine Name, having a regular "quota" of repitions per day and the number of hours spent on it. Navaratri is an occasion symbolising the victory of the higher, divine forces over the lower, negative qualities that find their expression in injustice, oppression, aggrandisement, greed, selfishness, hatred and a host of other undivine forces that add to the suffering of man. Perform special worship on Navaratri days.
As a humble offering at the Lotus Feet of our Divine Master, Sri Swami Sivananda, on the sacred occasion of our Master's 133rd birth anniversary, we release the next issue of our Divine Life Magazine.
This sacred event was celebrated online on Tuesday, 8 September 2020, commencing with Ganga Arati at 5.30pm. The morning session, which commenced at 5am with the final chanting of the Sri Hanuman Chalisa, 11 times, saw the culmination of the 41-day recital. This was followed by Havan which was live-streamed from Sivanandashram, Chatsworth. More than 500 devotees signed the pledge form to undertake the 41-Day chanting of the Sri Hanuman Chalisa. 1881 devotees viewed the Havan ceremony and participated online.
In respect of the birthday of a saint, the Master said: "Few events are more auspicious than the celebration of birth anniversaries of saints." Regarding the celebration of his birthday, the Master explained: "The devotees take delight in celebrating the birthday and are uplifted and benefited. A spiritual wave is created year after year when the birthday is celebrated, and more and more people get a chance of knowing the existence of Divine Life Society and my teachings. The pious, receptive attitude prevalent on such an occasion draws forth the Grace of the Guru and God upon the devotees. The thoughts of peace, devotion, love, etc., sent out by the innumerable devotees that assemble to celebrate the birthday, go a long way to promote peace, harmony and spiritual well-being in the country."
On 6 September, a special cultural programme, dedicated to the Master, was screened, depicting his life and teachings. There were 550 views. It featured the day-to-day activities of the Master, with a voice over by Pujya Swami Sahajananda. Our children from grades 4 – 7 also participated in various readings.