Can I Join Ananda and Remain Catholic?


I am Catholic, and I am very active in my parish church. I really like teachings of Yogananda. So, my question is: Can one remain active Catholic when one enters in Ananda Sangha? Does it change or limit his relation with the church? Thank you!

—Ivan, Italy


Dear Ivan, ciao!

Yes, joining Ananda Sangha you can remain fully active as a Catholic. Ananda is not a religion, but is pure spirituality. It is open and supportive. It has Hindus, Christians, Jews, Muslims (I know at least one) among its members. Ananda will help you to spiritualize and deepen your Catholic faith, as well as your inner closeness to Jesus.

The problem, however, might arise with your parish priest. If he is orthodox, he won’t approve of any yogic element among the Catholic. He might discourage meditation (I have heard this happen) and will also reject certain teachings like karma and reincarnation. On the other hand I have heard of progressive priests who are open to this path, and to yoga in general. But they are certainly the minority.

Yogananda came to teach the essence of all religions. He taught, as you might know, “the original Christianity of Jesus” and “the original Yoga of Krishna”. He brought union, personal spirituality, inner communion. He himself felt extremely close to Jesus Christ and made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, loved Saint Francis and came to Assisi. There are numerous photos with him wearing the cross. You might enjoy this:

In divine friendship, jayadev