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Chinese New Year 2017: The Year of the Rooster

         About Margaret Simpson

author Copyright SYDA Foundation

Margaret Simpson has been following the Siddha Yoga path for over thirty years. She offers seva as a Siddha Yoga meditation teacher. She also serves as a writer and editor—both from home and as a visiting sevite—in the SYDA Foundation Content Department. Margaret is the author of A Perfect Life, a biography of Baba Muktananda for young people, and was a regular contributor to and occasional guest editor of Darshan magazine. She hosted a Siddha Yoga chanting and meditation group in her home in Laurieston, Scotland from 1994 to 1997, and in Bath, England from 2003 to 2013.

Margaret is a professional writer with novels, books on history, and television scripts to her credit. She currently lives in Wiltshire, England.


   About Eesha Sardesai

author Copyright SYDA Foundation

Eesha was introduced to the Siddha Yoga path by her parents when she was born in 1991. She has been serving on staff in the SYDA Foundation Content Department since 2014. Between 2011 and 2014, Eesha served as a visiting sevite in Shree Muktananda Ashram in the Content and Food Services departments.

Eesha earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania, where she majored in English (with a focus on creative nonfiction writing) and Communication and Public Service. Before she began serving on staff, she worked as a writer at a food magazine.

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Thanks to this story, and the meaning behind the Chinese tradition, I now look at roosters with a new perception. “Seeing through pretense and illusion are the words I now associate with the bird that wakes up my village at dawn—in France often represented in a metal shape atop houses and churches, or depicted as a huge stone statue at the entrance to a town.
The rooster in this story, with its wise attitude, inspires me very much. It keeps a secure distance, listens with care and attention to the sounds and words coming from others, and finally, puts those words to the test. It views its surroundings from the highest perspective, undisturbed by outer drama, deeply anchored in its inner kingdom.
Thank you, Gurumayi, for enriching my knowledge!

Rodez, France

This powerful story reminds me to take time to reflect on decisions. Rooster was under pressure by Fox to succumb to the enticing idea of peace between animals, but Rooster paused until he could see clearly what was happening.
This story reminds me to stay focused, practice discernment, humbly pray for guidance, and have patience until the right timing allows for a clear decision to be made.

Busselton, Australia

This story reminds me of a cherished memory—sitting in the courtyard in Gurudev Siddha Peeth while listening to the stories that Baba told. He often broke into laughter when reaching the punchline, the culmination of a story. Over and over, story after story, Baba showered his wisdom and humor on us.
His words still ring in my ears: “Wake up, O man, wake up!“

Michigan, USA

I love this story. The first thing that sang to my heart was the rooster singing his heart out upon the rising of the sun. What joy! The second thing that stood out to me was his sensing that something wasn't right.
As I contemplated the rooster’s concern, I realized that lately, in response to some major event or day-to-day occurrence that makes me feel uneasy, I inwardly ask Gurumayi for guidance and clarity. I always receive an answer that helps me to know myself better.  
Thank you, beloved Gurumayi.

New York, USA

After reading this story, I had the opportunity to share it with someone who I felt had been acting like the fox by trying to persuade me to believe something that was not true. In a playful way, I delivered my message to him. I am grateful to have read the story because it guided my actions in a way that was beneficial for both of us.

 Curacao, Netherlands Antilles

This story brought vivid images to my mind and evoked a subtle feeling in my body, for the interaction between the rooster and the fox felt familiar to me. I recognized aspects of myself in the characters.
I understood that my ego is much like the fox, who is always cunning, strategizing for its next meal, and giving false hope. And for me, the rooster represents my intellect. I saw that he was able to escape the fox's trap by taking full advantage of his lofty position—and his skill at "seeing through pretense and illusion"—in order to discern the truth of the situation.
Looking at the story in this way, I realize that I must use my intellect to discriminate between the voice of the ego and the Truth.

Berlin, Germany

What a timely message for our world—to see the truth through a myriad of illusions.  

Connecticut, USA

I was immediately engaged by the delightful illustrations and then moved by the deep wisdom of this story. It feels so good to be reminded of the Truth, and of the power of having discrimination and discernment. Having made my share of "learning blunders" earlier in my life, I can now rejoice in the wisdom and discrimination I have learned over the years.
I am deeply grateful for this delightful presentation of the Truth in this story.

Washington, USA

I love this sweet story and the illustrations. I picture the magnificent rooster high in the treetops, enjoying his view of the forest.
As I approach my seventh decade, I glean a lot from this story: I do not need to be high up in the treetops to sense that something is not right—my inner knowledge takes care of that, and it's right here with my every breath.

London, United Kingdom

What a great story! My favorite part was where the rooster sensed that something was wrong, so he paused long enough to understand why he felt uneasy. By staying alert in this way, he was able to perceive clearly that the fox was lying—a perception that may have saved his life.  
This was such a great affirmation for me of the value of trusting my instincts—but also taking the time needed to make a wise decision. When something doesn't seem right, I too have been pausing and checking in with myself about why I am feeling uneasy and what is needed in the situation. This process has made me better able to take actions that benefit myself and others.

 California, USA