It is always hard to lose a great soul. Even though one mentally understands that the soul simply leaves the body as we all change the clothes at the end of the day, it is still very sad to say good bye to a great friend.

I first got in contact with Maria through e-mails when I started helping Ananda on the web projects. I immediately felt a deep connection with her. Working with her was so uplifting. The first (and only time) we met in person was in 2008 when we visited Ananda Village. I felt like we knew each other forever.

She was such a thoughtful friend. Whenever I felt alone and needed spiritual support, she was there for me. Her emails were always encouraging and inspiring and helped me to regain a more spiritual perspective on my everyday life. I loved how she was always so clear and straight to the point. When I was going through a period of great dissatisfaction with my job and uncertainty about my life’s direction she immediately arranged a personal meeting for me and my wife with Swamiji. She was even able to find me a job as a web developer for Ananda.

I was thinking recently about friendship and what makes somebody a good friend. I’m sure that time spent together definitely isn’t one of the main factors. I would say that the closeness and openness that one feels with the person is much more important. Also, as Swamiji nicely puts it in the Secrets of Friendship, “The secret of friendship is sharing with friends your aspirations and ideals, and not only passing time with them in camaraderie.”

So, good by my dear friend. Go with love, may joyful blessings speed you safely on your way…


  1. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and memories of Maria, Gregor. She will be greatly missed. Joy to you!

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