Tomorrow, May 19th, is Swami Kriyananda’s birthday. There will be many celebrations throughout Ananda Communities worldwide—I’m sure you’ll have a chance to read more posts about the proceedings. However, I wanted to tell you about one small celebration that you probably haven’t heard about.

At Ananda India, in addition to serving our many local members in the Delhi area, we also travel to most of the major cities: Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata, Hyderabad, and Bangalore.

My wife, Dharmini, and I visit Bangalore each month, along with other Ananda teachers. In addition to offering public classes on Yogananda’s philosophy and techniques, we also spend time getting to know our Bangalore members. In between our visits, our friends meet on Sundays to chant, pray, and meditate together.

Today they dedicated their Sunday session to Swami Kriyananda, in honor of his birthday. Here are excerpts from letters written by two members, Priyanka and Neelam:

“We had a wonderful meditation cum birthday celebration today. We chanted the Mahamritunjaya mantra (ancient Sanskrit chant for soul-liberation) for Swamiji and the vibrations were very strong. After the meditation we cut the cake for Swamiji; the cake was cut by friends whose birthdays fall in the month of May. We all sent out healing prayers to Swamiji for a healthy long life.”

All but one of these people have never met Swami Kriyananda personally. Yet through his writings, music, and the people he has trained, they have met him. It is touching to witness our newest friends express their gratitude to Swamiji for all that he has done for each one of us, and the world, by spreading Yogananda’s teachings.