Sevaka Order

सेवक - seː.ʋək ˈɔrdər

A monastic order for those living in Ananda communities. Membership is comprised of single people as well as householders. (1)

Members of the Ananda Sevaka Order chooses to live in service and support of their fellow devotees of the path. They contribute their spiritual practices, good and cooperative attitude, and joyfulness to their activities in the Ananda community. Their lives reflect inner peace, strength, and selflessness. Although they are not necessarily saints, they practice as a saint and consider the welfare of the whole community. (1)

The Sevaka Order is not limited to people who renounce marriage and live in a traditional monastery setting. Members instead renounce worldly and selfish interests, devoting themselves to the spiritual search. Their lives are wholly dedicated to God, service, and communion with Him. (2)

Most members of the Sevaka Order reside in Ananda communities. But considerations of place, wealth, talents, and potential contributions to the Sevaka Order are always secondary to individual spiritual qualifications of the prospective members. A member of the Ananda Sadhaka Order may be invited to join the Sevaka Order after a period of at least two years. A member of the Sevaka Order who undergoes five years of additional training and resides in an Ananda community may also consider Sevaka Life Membership. (1)

Members of the Sevaka Order take vows of simplicity of material possessions, self-control over sensory desires, service toward others and God, and cooperative obedience. (3) Below are reprinted the words of the Sevaka vows:

Ananda Sevaka Order Vow

I offer my life, my service, and my devotion to God, to you my line of gurus, and to the ray of the divine light that you represent.

I promise, as a member in Ananda’s Sevaka Order, to live in surrender to God’s will, and to abide by both the letter and the spirit of the Guidelines for Living at Ananda.

I dedicate myself to finding Thee, my God, and to serving Thee in a spirit of love through my fellowman.

As a means of attaining Self-realization, I offer my cooperative obedience and loyalty to Ananda, to those members who are responsible for guiding the community in its various aspects, and, above all, to the living representative of the Ananda line of gurus: the Spiritual Director of Ananda Sevaka Order.

Guide me and strengthen me, Lord, in this, my divine resolution to live always for Thee.

Ananda Sevaka Order Life Member Vow

Heavenly Father, Divine Mother, Friend, Beloved God; Great Masters: Jesus Christ, Babaji-Krishna, Lahiri Mahasaya, Swami Sri Yukteswar, and our Guru, Paramhansa Yogananda; great saints of all religions: I bow to you all.

I offer my life, my service, and my devotion unconditionally to God, to you my line of gurus, and to the ray of the divine light that you represent.

I promise to live my life always in openness and surrender to God’s will. I will abide by the monastic principles of simplicity and self-control as they have been defined in the Guidelines for Living at Ananda. Henceforth I relinquish all sense of ‘I’ and ‘mine’ in my life. I offer all that I own and all that I am at Thy feet of Infinity.

I dedicate myself to finding Thee, my God, and to serving Thee in a spirit of love through my fellowman.

As a means of attaining Self-realization, I pledge my cooperative obedience and loyalty to Ananda, to those members who are responsible for guiding the community in its various aspects, and, above all, to the living representative of the Ananda line of gurus: the Spiritual Director of the Ananda Sevaka Order.

Guide me and strengthen me in this, my divine resolution, that I live the rest of my life for God alone. (3)

References

  1. a b c Guidelines for Conduct of Members of Ananda Sevaka Order, by Swami Kriyananda. Chapter 12, “Acceptance of New Members of the Sevaka Order.”
  2. Asha Praver
  3. a b Guidelines for Conduct of Members of Ananda Sevaka Order, by Swami Kriyananda. Chapter 13, “Membership Vows.”