August 1, 2021
We have arrived in the blessed month of August. Where I live in Melbourne, Australia, this means we are inching closer to the spring season. The month of August is hugely special to me. You may wonder why…
It’s because August is the month of Bhagavan Nityananda’s Punyatithi, which is a very auspicious occasion for all Siddha Yogis, and one that has come to be particularly meaningful for me. I have always experienced a special connection to Bhagavan Nityananda—or Bade Baba, as he is affectionately known. When I think about Bade Baba, my mind often goes back to a story from my childhood. My parents have recounted this story to me so many times that it might as well be their story!
The year was 2000. I was five years old and taking part in a small gathering with Gurumayi in the courtyard in Gurudev Siddha Peeth. At one point I had the opportunity to give Gurumayi a hug. Being the shy, reserved five-year-old child that I was back then, my immediate reaction was to inwardly shrivel up into a ball and play small. This absolutely showed in the way that I hugged Gurumayi—I looked down at the ground with my shoulders hunched and reciprocated her hug with tightly clenched fists.
Gurumayi sensed my uneasiness. She gently unclenched my hands and spoke to me about “Bade Baba hands.” She asked me to look at my hands, spread them wide open, and hold them up (emulating this photo of Bade Baba). Gurumayi told me that when I spread my Bade Baba hands and give someone a hug, whomever I’m hugging will receive Bade Baba’s darshan.
To this day, I hold the awareness that any time I hug someone, no matter who the person is, this very embrace could be enough to make their day, or maybe even change their life for the better. And during my daily life, whenever I sense that I am creeping back into my shell, I look at my hands and am instantly reminded of my deep connection to Bade Baba, and my shyness is dispelled.
This story is very special to me, and it is not one that I share often. August 8 marks the 60th anniversary of Bhagavan Nityananda’s Punyatithi, so I figured that if there was any time to share this story with you, it would be now!
At this time of year especially, Bade Baba’s presence feels as tangible as ever. When I attend a Celebration Satsang in honor of his Punyatithi, or even when I hear the soothing sounds of Nityanandam Brahmanandam in the Yaman Kalyan raga, feelings of comfort, peacefulness, and happiness well up within me.
Speaking of Celebration Satsangs… wasn’t the Siddha Yoga Celebration Satsang in Honor of Gurupurnima just so amazing? I was elated to read in the shares on the Siddha Yoga path website that many of you seized the golden opportunity to participate—and not just once, but multiple times. It reminded me of how my parents would create satsang again and again whenever they told the story of my Bade Baba hands.
Now I would like to share with you about another satsang that will soon be taking place. This is the Siddha Yoga Celebration Satsang in Honor of Bhagavan Nityananda’s Punyatithi: The August Presence of Bhagavan Nityananda.
When I learned that this is the title Gurumayi has given to the satsang—The August Presence of Bhagavan Nityananda—it tickled me pink. Those who know me are aware that I am a punster—I am always telling jokes that play on the multiple meanings of a word or phrase! I loved to see the word “August” in this title, since it has two meanings: it’s the name of the month and an adjective that can be used to describe Bade Baba. Of course, “august” as Gurumayi has used it here, is the latter. It means “eminent,” “venerable,” “hallowed,” and “noble.” It is a word applied to that which is glorious, grand, and uniquely splendid. This is precisely the experience of Bhagavan Nityananda most people have. They experience his stately, majestic presence, and the grandeur of his being. When people think of Bade Baba, what comes to mind—and what they feel in their heart—is the vastness of his presence.
From what I know so far, the elements of the Celebration Satsang will include the following:
The elements will be featured together on the Siddha Yoga path website beginning Saturday evening, August 7 (USA eastern daylight time), and they will be available until the end of August. You may participate in each of the elements on their own or in all of them sequentially. And remember: you can take part in the satsang whenever you like, and as many times as you please.
Earlier, I shared what Gurumayi had told me when I was younger: that when I spread my Bade Baba hands and use them when giving someone a hug, that person would receive Bade Baba’s darshan.
Little did I know that twenty-one years later I would get to experience the truth of Gurumayi’s words in a most immediate way—by sending you this invitation to the Celebration Satsang in honor of my beloved Bhagavan Nityananda, whose simple gesture of open hands has uplifted me, transformed my life, and made me a more loving person.
Be open to every aspect of this exquisite Celebration Satsang. I am already visualizing you there, savoring—and embracing—each moment.
Siddha Yoga Musician