Mahatma-to-be and the Mahatma-maker: Gandhi and Rajchandra

Mahatma-to-be and the Mahatma-maker: Gandhi and Rajchandra

By Uma Majmudar

Mahatma Gandhi, a world revered spiritual-political leader, is known to have positively influenced countless men and women around the globe. Yet, not many people know the key figure who influenced Gandhi in the most profound ways before he became known as ‘’Mahatma,” or Great soul (Maha: great, and atma: soul). If Mohandas Gandhi metamorphosed into Mahatma, who was the Mahatma-maker?

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Pray, Let Us Play

Pray, Let Us Play

By Anna Monday

We seek God for many reasons, not all noble. We focus on God’s power to protect us, guard our health, give us the stuff on our cosmic gift registry, and also love us when nobody else will take our calls. When we’re reasonably comfortable, many of us want our curiosity about the nature of God/Life satisfied. But how many seek God because they want the wittiest, most subtle playmate in the entire Universe?

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Old Age and the Grumpy Old Man Syndrome

Old Age and the Grumpy Old Man Syndrome

By William Page

One of the less pleasant transitions that we have to make in this life is the passage to old age.  There’s a line in the movie “Elegy” that goes something like this:  “The biggest surprise in a man’s life is old age.”  The Mahabharata  anticipates this insight in the incident where the god Dharma asks King Yudhisthira what the most surprising fact of life is.  The king replies, “People see other people dying around them all the time, but nobody truly believes that he himself will die.”

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Transition: When the In-Charge Passes

Transition: When the In-Charge Passes

By Swami Yogeshananda

When the Head of one of our monastic institutions, a monastery or convent, passes on, the event can cause turbulent and stressful reactions in the residents. Then again it may not. If the event is unexpected, of course, it is more likely to be upsetting. Decisions may be much delayed, while we want them to be resolved at once. Sometimes our “world” can almost seem to fall apart.

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Swami Vivekananda and Adhikarawada

Swami Vivekananda and Adhikarawada

By Mangesh Buwa

Swami Vivekananda came among us to put the ancient message of Vedanta in simple language so that vast number of people can apply it to their lives; ‘his life’s work’, as he famously said, was: ‘… to put the Hindu ideas into English and then make out of dry philosophy and intricate mythology and queer startling psychology, a religion which shall be easy, simple, popular, and at the same time meet the requirements of the highest minds – is a task only those can understand who have attempted it. The dry, abstract Advaita must become living — poetic — in everyday life; out of hopelessly intricate mythology must come concrete moral forms; and out of bewildering Yogi-ism must come the most scientific and practical psychology — and all this must be put in a form so that a child may grasp it. That is my life’s work.’

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A Tribute to John

by Linda Prugh John Schlenck contributed so much to Vedantists in America and to the Ramakrishna Order. His musical compositions, which use western and eastern instruments and themes, help to establish a beautiful spiritual atmosphere for meditation. One splendid...

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John Schlenck : A Life of Dedicated Service

by Swami Tathagatananda Our dear brother John Schlenck led an ideal life. This ideal and dedicated life created a deep impact on all our minds. I do not know how he came in contact with Vedanta, but after finishing college, he came to this Society at the age of...

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Deification of the World

by Joan Shack Deification of the world is an ancient Upanishadic teaching: “Whatever exists in this universe is to be covered with the Lord.” Swami Vivekananda reinvigorated this teaching by defining practical Vedanta as service of God in man within society. “The...

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John Schlenck, My Spiritual Brother and Exemplar

by Pravrajika Gayatriprana I met John for the first time on January 4, 1969, when I attended the Sunday service at the Vedanta Society of New York headed by Swami Pavitrananda. John’s family was Unitarian and at the time I met him he certainly had the kind of...

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Considering John’s Legacy

by Jon & Anna Monday Freedom and courage come to mind when considering John’s legacy. We came to know him through American Vedantist, a courageous enterprise and a unique outlet that offers a home for often unorthodox ideas freely expressed to a readership already...

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