Dear Meditator,

During my first year at Ananda Village I asked Swami Kriyananda if he had advice for my meditation practice. He replied, “Keep Divine Mother first.”

I realized he was encouraging me to focus more on giving rather than receiving.

The goal of meditation is self-forgetfulness. Yet one’s ego refers everything back to itself, instead of offering itself freely to God. The grasping quality of the ego creates tension, which drives away true meditation experiences.

When we meditate with deep attention and devotion, we break the cycle of habitual self-involvement. This is why concentration is so essential. Concentration is sincerity and its fruits are love and absorption.

In Swami Kriyananda’s book Awaken to Superconsciousness he says that during the higher stages of meditation “even the thought ‘I am concentrating’ is a distraction, and betrays an imperfection in one’s mental focus.”

During your meditations, offer to the Spiritual Eye every personal motive, thought, and feeling of separate existence. Feel that God is meditating through you. Give yourself to the Superconsciousness with the deep receptivity and love. If you do, Paramhansa Yogananda said, someday, when you least expect it, God will reach down and lift you up to His Beloved Presence.

Swami Kriyananda on meditating with a pure heart:

“Even in meditation, it is important not to meditate with desire for the results. We think the spiritual path is about the experiences we receive in meditation, but it is much more about the refinement and purity of our self-offering to God.”

“If the devotee starts to think of how he can get more experience or more realization, then he falls back into delusion. It has to be a constant giving, and in that giving, God can give us more.

“Spiritual experiences will freely flow to us when we meditate with this kind of attitude, there being no longer any hindrances to stop the flow.”

“To eliminate the strain and tension of trying to concentrate, release also the thought, I am meditating. Think rather, the Cosmic Vibration is reaffirming, through me, its own reality. Cosmic love, through me, is yearning for God’s love. Cosmic joy, through me, is rejoicing in our Infinite Beloved.”

As we deepen our meditation practice, we will experience more and more the Great Reality of God, and we will know and say—“I am this reality!”

May your practice of meditation immerse you ever more joyfully into God’s light and love.

In divine friendship,



  1. As I sat meditating this morning, I realized I’d “lost” about ten minutes and didn’t remember even doing my kriyas. I was going to ask an Ananda minister if that was supposed to happen…and you just answered the question! (Thanks; it’s my birthday today and this newsletter was a gift!)

  2. This came at just the PERFECT time for me today, I am not accustomed to meditation yet, still very easily distracted, was just coming out of my room for a minute, and now m going back in with renewed hope …much gratitude to you for sending this message!!!

  3. I am a new student of srf and I found you on you tube helping me with meditation and energization techniques, I just wish to express my gratitude for your work here, and how you are stretching even further, the teachings of our guruji!

  4. This is my first meditation newsletter & I am very grateful. I am dealing with the possibility of a major move & have been resistant. I know I need to open myself to life’s possibilities & this meditation insight will be very helpful in helping me achieve that perspective. Thank you very much.

  5. I must agree, when I think, “I offer and devote myself to you God, meditate, will, serve, and think through me.” It is a very uplifting feeling.

  6. Wow! To think of God meditating through me is very liberating. Instead of a daily chore on the way to self-realization, meditation becomes a devotion.

  7. Thanks for your insights on meditation. But I am not able to concentrate much. Very easily I get distracted and lost in my thoughts. Please help.

  8. Thank you, dear Bharat, for your loving service in this way. The reminder to set aside the desires and expectations of the self is beautiful and true. I am reminded of the statement I love, which Sri Lahiri encouraged people to say: “I am nothing and mine is nothing.”

    The giving that is essential, I believe, is the offering to God of our self, primarily an inner process which is necessary and helpful to be reflected and practiced in our outer life as well.

    At the same time, I find it helpful to feel my inner being desiring the true experience of God, knowing that this only is my reality. It draws me into deeper meditation. Only “God, God, God”.

    Thus, I believe that it depends upon where this desire for experience and realization comes from, ego or soul, to determine whether it is going to be upward or downward pulling. Do you think this is true?

    With joy and appreciation, Kabir

    P.S. It is not needed to post this comment, as this is only between us.

  9. My heart is overwhelmed with gratitude for Divine Mother’s presence in meditation and life brought through the guidance of Swami Kriyananda and all of the ministers and friends at Ananda. Ananda’s work is such a blessing equally to those who give and those who receive. It is a guiding light to the progression of Dwapara Yuga.

  10. Thank you for these different letters. I appreciate them. I believe that we are given what we need at the time we need it. It is also nice to see other people going through similar situations. I believe it helps us to keep connected. Love and blessings Gwin

  11. I had been trying to concentrate with effort which I felt was adding to the distraction and also other things kept me occupied mentally while meditating for past some time, thanks to your this letter, now I will be able to concentrate effortlessly,banishing the mental disturbences

  12. I have been meditating for several years now and actually started to channel periodically over the past several months. I started meditation to as you say “break the cycle of habitual self-involvement”. Now I spend much of my time manifesting which I guess creates the habitual habit of manifesting. My sessions are generally 20-30 minutes. Half meditating & half manifesting. I have been trying to determine if this is the proper balance – any thoughts?

  13. I have been meditating for 22years, my early days of meditation were driven by fear of death, and a determination to overcome the cycle of birth and death. I have sat for meditation repeating mantra,
    chanted then meditated, i didn’t always forget the I
    but was witnessing my busy mind, and sometimes quiet mind, as i practiced this meditation i found it also within my awareness all day everyday , i have reached so many plateau’s
    Then a few years ago i was contemplating why i wasn’t going deeper in my meditation and became despondent, I contemplated the God consciousness of the enlightened beings, and realised why and how they used their Guru to carry them across the ocean of samsara, for the last 3 years i have been meditating on the Gurus inner and outer form, in all of nature i see my guru, in every creature i see my guru, within all beings i see my guru, i see the formless consciousness sustaining all that is and that is not, since i have installed the guru within myself my meditation has developed and deepened in ways i could never have immagined, i understand totally the reason for my early beginnings of meditation, establishing routine, sitting for a few hours in meditation at a time even though i maybe restless, chanting mantra , meditating on mantra, is all there to strengthen the mind and allow it to focus on god,
    Meditation on the inner and outer guru allows you to forget yourself and ride on the wings of the guru’s pure state, which is something i couldn’t have done alone, without the guidance and knowledge of the Great teachers who have been before and left their footprints.

  14. Dear Sonia, 7.

    Concentration is like a muscle. The more we use it the stronger it becomes. The effort we make to meditate well makes us stronger and more spiritually refined. I encourage you to stay with meditation; it does become increasingly joyful as one continues meditating. The technique, Hong-Sau, which is taught on our website is marvelous for helping one concentrate more effectively and I highly recommend it. Also, you may want to read an article I wrote called, “Concentration Is Everything,” that is posted on the Ananda Meditation Support site under Articles on Meditation. I wrote it for people who find it challenging to concentrate during meditation. Good luck and stay with it. It is well worth.

  15. Its wonderfull this letter just came to me in the very special moment I really needed to hear this. Oh my Jesus, you have said: “Truly I say to you, ask and it will be given to you , seek and you will find, knock and it will be opened to you. And I gladly say Glory to God Father and Mother,Glory to Jesus, Glory to my very beloved Master Paramahansa Yogananda, glory to Swami Kriyananda and Glory to this newsletter which suddenly appeared by divine order just in the rigth moment.Thanks, Thanks and Thanks. With much love for all of you Carlos.

  16. meditation for me is the one part of a growing spiritual task, so I find myselve in the same situation, that Yogananda described in his Biography: the fight for consentration, were my mind is like a bird, flying in all directions…

    Fortunately, Christ is allways omnipresent in my life, as I have to work for Him.

    Yes, I am 67 yrs and cooping with the 3 crises alike: in Church, in Finance and in the awfull situation of our cowntry…………

    From next names, I follow Yogananda, Sri Yukteshwar and mainly Christs daily receiving orders.


  17. Swami Kriyananda once remarked that concentration is absorption with interest. For me, that takes the strain out of it. He also says in his book, In Divine Friendship, that people are wrong when thy think that meditation is all about techniques. It isn’t, he says, it is about first of all opening the heart. Whatever we love, we become absorbed in easily. I find that “works” very well in my meditation. If I can breathe deeply for a long time, holding it in the area of the heart before exhaling. Bringing energy to the heart awakens the heart’s feelings. It is easier then to think of Divine Mother and feel Her love. And than – what’s not to be absorbed? :-)

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