Where Are the Saints?


What is the reason that even though so many monks both at Ananda and YSS have been meditating and practicing the Kriya Yoga since the passing of Paramhansa Yogananda, we still have not seen any person achieve complete enlightenment and attain the level of a master such as Sri Lahari Mahasaya, Sri Yukteshwar Giri or Paramhansa Yogananda ?

—Jehangir Nariman, India


Dear Jehangir,

Such great souls as Paramhansa Yogananda, Lahiri Mahasaya, and others come to earth and reveal their presence publicly only rarely. They are like lighthouses to show the fleet of soul-ships the way Home. Many, though not all, come at the crossroads of the yugas and, in any case, come to uplift thousands, perhaps millions. In former centuries millions of monks and nuns lived on earth from China, Tibet, India, Japan to Europe. They were inspired by avatars such as Buddha, Krishna, and Jesus Christ. This indicates no diminution of divine power but the opposite: the power to uplift countless souls.

We have each, in human form, been incarnated perhaps even millions of times. The way to liberation is almost never short or easy. And there are saints among us now. How can I or you or anyone know whether among those Ananda and YSS monks is not hidden a jivan mukta? Does such a one look different or wear a different color robe or mala? Who can say that among the laity, the householder kriyabans, there aren’t emerging saints?

It is not our job to judge the spiritual stature of others nor ours to bestow the pearl of great price.

I can offer you, however, the life of one such direct disciple whose soul-freedom was attained after the last test (of death) according to Yogananda: Swami Kriyananda. His autobiography, The New Path, and the biography of Swami Kriyananda, Lightbearer (among other books about his life) reveal the siddhis of a great saint. (Yoganandaji told Kriyanandaji that he would find God at the end of his life.)

Rajarshi Janakananda (also known as Saint Lynn), an American businessman, achieved enlightenment under the golden touch of Yoganandaji. So also did Sister Gyanamata. Their lives you can read in books that are available. So whether publicly acknowledged or hidden you can be sure that the power of such a lineage has, is, and will continue to produce great saints. We need only improve our “I-sight” for, as the children say on the school playground: “It takes one to know one!”

Blessings to you,
Nayaswami Hriman