Creativity Arise!

I never considered myself an artist because I’m not particularly good at painting, drawing, or composing music. I realized, however, that creativity takes many forms and I discovered I have a knack for starting businesses. I started my first business when I was 18, which grew to employ 25 people. At 20, I helped my brother and sister-in-law create a successful online business. That business allowed them to quit their corporate jobs, buy their own home, and send their daughter …

How “Seva” Was Born

The idea for a business to generate income for Ananda started as an inspiration after a gathering of Ananda’s next generation in Assisi last summer. As soon as I mentioned it to Navashen he jumped on board with enthusiasm. Our business idea went through a lot of iterations and it made us think about the purpose of what we were doing and who we wanted to serve. Our goal was to create a business where the bottom line was not …

Babaji: The Best Roommate Ever!

“‘Whenever anyone utters with reverence the name of Babaji,’ Lahiri Mahasaya said, ‘that devotee attracts an instant spiritual blessing.’” – Autobiography of a Yogi This past week we had a work day to prepare our new South Bay temple. The old South Bay center had a large murti (statue) of Mahavatar Babaji. During our transition from the old space to the current temple, one of our friends took Babaji for a number of months as a roommate. She said he’s …

Total Receptivity

Leo Cox, a direct disciple of Paramhansa Yogananda, related his story of being with the master in the movie, Awake: The Life of Yogananda. In a touching scene he shared honestly how difficult it was to be with someone who knew his every thought, “He analyzed you down to an ant.” Swami Kriyananda also shared that when he was at Mt. Washington it was like a hotel – people would come enthusiastic and leave as soon as they saw how …

Balancing Will Power and Feeling

When I was growing up my father always offered me the sage advice, “Practice moderation in all things.” He usually brought that quote up when I was busy overindulging in my third plate of macaroni-and-cheese, but as I grew older I began to realize that, as Krishna says, the Golden Middle Path applies to all areas of life, not only healthy eating habits. Over the last ten months I’ve been practicing Yogananda’s Energization Exercises six times a day. I will …

Unleash Your Superpower of Kindness

A friend of mine came to our temple this week near tears. “What’s wrong?” I asked her. She told me she had just come from a funeral and was down in spirits. As she was parking before our meditation, a man angrily yelled at her that she was in his parking spot. Since she was dealing with a lot of stress at the time, this man’s aggressive behavior pushed her over the edge into tears. How different it would have …

The Joy of Seclusion

“What do you do for fun?” This question was posed to me by a friend during his visit to Los Angeles. I found myself grasping for an answer to not seem totally boring, “Well… we go to the movies sometimes, umm… and we play tennis every now and then…” I was at a loss. I hadn’t stopped long enough to think about what I did for fun but now that it had been brought to my attention, it was getting …

“I Am The Slide!”

  Has one of your family members ever sold you on a multi-level marketing product? Perhaps you’re currently using a magic lotion or potion that “will change your life.” My father sold me some interesting products over the years. Everything from magnets to water purifiers. I actually sold some of the magnets too! I remember wearing them all over my body and feeling like iron man (perhaps it was from attracting metal to myself!). I recall one time I was …

In This World Mother, No One Can Love Me

Not even 2 months into our relationship, Narayan and I took a trip to the East Coast to visit his family. It seemed perfectly normal to me because I had a pretty good idea we were going to get married, however, I can see now why it was a bit odd to his family. They were only hearing about me for the first time, along with his announcement, “She’s coming with me in April!” We carried a harmonium with us …

Overcoming Likes and Dislikes

I received an email last week from someone saying, “I don’t like you.” I can understand where they were coming from! There have been times when I haven’t liked myself. Yet, self-deprecation is not humility. Forgetting our little self by loving God and serving Him in all leads to true humility. Simple, but not always easy to do! The next day someone told me, “I didn’t like when you said…” They felt I had not heard their point of view. …