A Good Friday Gift was presented by the Ramakrishna Centre of South Africa to devotees in the form of its annual Vedanta Retreat on Friday, 18 April 2014 from 6 a.m to 12:30 p.m at the Glen Anil Ashram.
The programme commenced at the Sri Ramakrishna Temple with a satsang that included the opening prayer, singing of stotrams/bhajans, silent meditation and the chanting of the Vaidika Dasha Shantih Mantras. Reading from the Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna was done by Ms Kirthi Rabikissoon. Dr Rajesh Singh, a member of the Executive Committee welcomed the audience.
After breakfast the devotees assembled at the Nischalananda Hall and were treated to an enlightening message by Swami Saradaprabhananda on the topic “Sage Uddalaka’s Teachings to Svetaketu: The Highest Nature of God” where he emphasised that the true purpose of learning was to uplift oneself to higher truths. He then introduced ‘Likhit Japa’ when the devotees were advised to write AUM in any language with concentrated mind for 10 minutes.
Swami Vimokshananda, the President of the Centre, delivered an inspiring message on the topic “The Universalism of Vedanta” clarifying the difference between the common understanding of universalism and the Vedantic concept of universalism. He also introduced a Silent Reading of Srimad Bhagavad Gita with the advise that the devotees should do the reading with complete focus on the thoughts of Gita.
Brahmachari Akhilachaitanya eloquently chanted selected verses from the Shiva Sankalpa Suktam. The Shiva Sankalpa Sukta is a powerful six-verse hymn from the Rig Veda that entreats the mind “to dwell on the auspicious will of the Divine,” and helps one cultivate conscious resolve in alignment with the cosmic auspiciousness. Mr Y Rugunandan, a youth speaker, also delivered a message entitled “Swami Vivekananda’s Laws of Life”.
The programme also included screening of a DVD entitled “Karma & Reincarnation” guided meditation and an enlightening question and answer session. The programme was well attended and enjoyed by all present. Ms Nikita Rugunandan was the MC for the hall program.
|| Aum Shri Ramakrishnarpanamastu ||