Rama Raghava
Bihag Raga

Siddha Yoga Namasankirtana
Chanting with Gurumayi in the Winter Holidays

The recording of this namasankirtana is available in the Siddha Yoga Bookstore.

©Ⓟ 1997 SYDA Foundation®. All rights reserved.
Please do not copy, record, or distribute.

Introduction by Mary Brooks

For many Siddha Yogis, a favorite way to celebrate the winter holidays is by chanting Rama Raghava with Gurumayi. I know it is for me!

Since 1998, this beloved namasankirtana has been the chant for Siddha Yoga satsangs on Christmas Eve at Shree Muktananda Ashram and at that time of year on Gurumayi’s Teachings Visits. I have the fondest memories of satsangs on several of those deep winter evenings. Everyone—grown-ups and young ones alike—would be colorfully dressed in their finest, and many children, excited with a holiday spirit, would sit together near the front of the beautiful flower-filled hall. As the lights dimmed, the flames of small candles shifted the atmosphere ever so slightly—from outward celebration toward quiet reverence. On one such occasion, as the sounds of the tabla and harmonium began to fill the space and we began the call-and-response rhythms of Rama Raghava, I felt that I was soaring across a vast inner sky of pure joy.

The month of December is filled with holiday traditions. At this time of year, people of many cultures and faiths find magnificent ways to celebrate the presence of divinity, both within humanity and also made manifest on this Earth. As Siddha Yogis remember God’s tangible gifts of grace and compassion, we kindle a renewal of faith and refresh a sense of hope for ourselves, our families, our communities, our nations, and our world.

One of the principal ways that people around the world express gratitude for God’s presence in their lives, especially at this time of year, is through song. On the Siddha Yoga path, music is a treasured way to feel and express our love for God and celebrate the presence of the Divine in our lives. As we chant Rama Raghava, we invoke Lord Rama and Lord Krishna as incarnations of Lord Vishnu, the one who sustains and protects all of creation. Among the deities, Lord Vishnu is the form of the Lord who takes birth again and again to bestow grace upon the world and guide humanity on the path of dharma.

When we chant this namasankirtana, we are essentially praying that we be watched over lovingly by the supreme Lord. We chant with the knowledge that the Lord is fully present within each of his names. So, when we chant the names Rama and Krishna, we are calling forth their divine qualities—qualities that exist in the heart of every human being.

Chanting Rama Raghava is a heart-opening way to celebrate God’s presence within ourselves. I invite you to join in this tradition by chanting along with the audio recording with Gurumayi and the Siddha Yoga music ensemble in Shree Muktananda Ashram. If you wish, you may choose to simply listen, bringing your awareness to rest in the sound of the lilting melody, which is based on the Bihag raga. The rasa of this melodic pattern gives rise to feelings of love and gentle longing in the heart.