babaji krishna and jesus christ in meditation art by jyotish
A Touch of Light

Our Own Possibilities

All of life is bound together by a common purpose. From the lowliest worm to the most exalted saint, all are seeking the same goal: bliss. This search may take many forms—from finding a juicy leaf to union with God—but this shared desire for true happiness motivates us all. People do themselves a disservice when they put great saints on … Read More

yogananda teachings on how to be happy all the time
A Touch of Light

I Can Choose

In 1937 Yogananda wrote to his most advanced disciple, Rajarshi Janakananda, “I used to come home, my hair saturated with smoke and my eyes burning after luncheon talks. I felt even suffocated. One day I made up my mind, Divine Spirit was smoke and light, and I was never bothered since. Mind is everything, whichever way you train it.” Mind … Read More

shores of cosmic peace image jyotish is freedom from karma possible
A Touch of Light

Is Freedom from Karma Possible?

Recently we were discussing the law of karma with a few friends. One of them made an interesting comment that karma doesn’t always come back immediately, but hangs around for a while. It isn’t, he said, as if there were a credit card company keeping track of charges and payments each month. That’s why we need a “Master Card” to … Read More

ashok baba disciple anandamayi ma with yogananda devotees
A Touch of Light

Faith, Attunement, and Courage

We just received news that a friend in India, Ashok Baba Kulkarni, is close to leaving his body. We’ve considered him a friend and an inspiration even though we met him and his wife, Daya, only a few times. On every occasion, he would regale us with stories of his time with his guru, Ananda Moyi Ma. Ashok Baba didn’t … Read More

yogananda teachings on reincarnation and karma and swami kriyananda moksha mandir ananda village tulips
A Touch of Light

Planning for Your Next Incarnation

The little boy was orphaned at an early age when both of his parents were killed in a tragic accident. Fortunately, he was taken in by his loving grandparents, who raised him in the tradition of his people: the Cherokee.  Thus begins The Education of Little Tree, a beautiful book which describes the ways of these indigenous people, and their … Read More

yogananda teachings whispers from eternity the hidden language of god and in all creatures like horse whispering
A Touch of Light

God’s Hidden Language

One of the most thrilling episodes in Paramhansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi is when Sri Yukteswar, after his death, materializes in front of Yogananda. Yogananda writes, “For the first time in my life I did not kneel at his feet in greeting but instantly advanced to gather him hungrily in my arms.” Then a little later, “My mind was … Read More

A Touch of Light

Attitudes for a Better World

Swami Kriyananda has written a visionary book called, Hope for a Better World! The Small Communities Solution. In it he shows how the materialistic attitudes of society today have brought us to the present state of worldwide tension and suffering. He also describes how global peace and happiness can be achieved through the spread of spiritual communities. “Is it realistic,” … Read More

how to do a short meditation intensely when there isnt time
A Touch of Light

When Time Is Short

We sometimes find ourselves in a situation in which we simply don’t have as long for our meditation as we would like. When this happens, the solution is not to skip our practice, but to do a shorter sadhana with greater intensity. In a short meditation it is especially important to make an effort to concentrate deeply. This principle of … Read More

crystal hermitage chapel ananda village
A Touch of Light

Watch for the “Aha” Moments

Over the years I’ve learned a lot about life by observing parents shopping with their children. Once in a supermarket I watched a little girl who was noisily demanding of her mother some goodie she wanted. After trying repeatedly to placate her child with noncommittal answers, the mother finally blurted out in exasperation, “The answer is maybe, and that’s final!” … Read More

how to allow grace to come through energy flow
A Touch of Light

Energy Flow Is the Key

I’d like to share an illustrative little story someone sent us: A young man who was receiving training from his guru was going about his duties, and the guru noticed he seemed a little depressed. The guru asked, “My boy, why are you so sad?” And the young man replied, “Sir, I love hearing you speak about the Bhagavad Gita. … Read More

A Touch of Light

What God Gives . . .

There is a powerful story from the life of Paramhansa Yogananda about the importance of rising above our likes and dislikes. It took place at a special ceremony at which he gave a lady student a red rose to wear. “But I don’t want a red rose,” she protested. “I want a pink one.” The Master answered her strongly, “What … Read More

swami kriyananda quotes about him from jyotish
A Touch of Light

Thank You, Swamiji

Swami Kriyananda was the sculptor who chiseled my heart and soul. My life has been transformed by trying to live according to his example. His birthday is May 19, and it seems fitting, as a kind of birthday present, to thank him for some of the ways he changed me and countless others. Divine Friendship. Swamiji usually signed his letters, … Read More

death and dying quotes from gita of india for grief and loss, angel
A Touch of Light

Facing Grief and Loss

The pandemic in India has created a situation that is both heartbreaking in terms of human suffering and staggering in its numbers. Many reputable sources say that the reported statistics of 400,000 new cases of Covid and 3,000 deaths per day are actually many times lower than the true figures. Yet what really brings this situation home for me are … Read More

ashram karma yoga program spiritual community ananda village
A Touch of Light

Young Bodies, Old Souls

We had a lovely dinner on the lawn with a group of friends last week, the first in more than a year. As the conversation deepened over the evening, we asked each person to talk about what they were working on inwardly. Their answers probably resonate with you too: “I’m working on staying in the moment.” Another, “I’m working on … Read More

A Touch of Light

A Letter to Swami Kriyananda

Today is the anniversary of Swamiji’s Moksha Day in 2013—when he discarded the worn-out garment of his body and found soul freedom. Rather than write about him, I thought I’d write a letter to him and share it with you. April 21, 2021 Dear Swamiji, This morning we had a beautiful meditation in your apartment at Crystal Hermitage to honor … Read More

A Touch of Light

Relax and Feel

One of the most difficult concepts for most people to grasp is that we don’t so much achieve Self-realization as we relax into it. We are constantly bombarded with the message that success depends upon making a strenuous effort. While this is often true for worldly success, it is the opposite for spiritual attainment. One time Swami Kriyananda, a little … Read More

A Touch of Light

Without a Doubt

I was once visiting a friend who had recently given birth to her second child, a lovely little girl. Her first child, a precocious three-year-old named Tamara, was exhibiting definite signs of jealousy towards this newcomer with whom she had to share her parents’ attention. As my friend lovingly cradled the sleeping infant in her arms, Tamara approached with a … Read More

A Touch of Light

Thy Will Be Done

Today is the anniversary of the crucifixion of Jesus, one of the three central events in Christianity. Anyone who grew up as a Christian is intimately familiar with the image of Christ dying on the cross. Easter, of course, represents the resurrection and the triumph of life over death, of spirit over body. There are many aspects to these events, … Read More

A Touch of Light

An Evening in the Eternal City

Today a friend of mine sent a cartoon in which a couple are seated together in a living room, and the woman says, “One day 2020 will be a one-word catchphrase for everything messed up. ‘How’s your day going?’ someone will ask you. ‘A total 2020,’ you’ll answer. ‘Say no more,’ will be their reply.” There’s probably truth behind the … Read More

A Touch of Light

How to Live “Autobiography of a Yogi”

For our annual Inner Renewal Week starting next week we will focus on various writings of Paramhansa Yogananda and Swami Kriyananda, including Autobiography of a Yogi, Conversations with Yogananda, and The Essence of the Bhagavad Gita. But reading and discussing books is all too often merely an intellectual exercise, even when it is inspiring. We want to take a different … Read More