This section is from the "Advices on Spiritual Living" book, by Sri Swami Chidananda.See also A Call to Liberation.
Immortal Atma Swaroopa!
Blessed Seeker after Truth,
Every one of you, all over India and the world has been in my mind during the recent period of the auspicious GURU PURNIMA and the sacred PUNYATITHI of holy Master's Mahasamadhi day. We have worshipped on your behalf and also prayer has been offered that Divine Grace of Gurudev may be granted to you all the days of your life. I am aware that you are being greeted through this page by this servant after a lapse of full four months. This letter last appeared in April issue of Wisdom Light. Since I started on tour, the May, June, July and August issues did not contain the Sivanandashram Letter. There was very little free time during travel and public engagements to devote to writing work and when this servant did get some time he found there was not much surplus energy left for this task. This was Gurudev's will, I suppose, and so I was resigned to the situation. Returning to Ashram at last (that was on 7th July). I found myself right in the centre of the pre-Guru-Purnima activities that had commenced humming all over the Ashram. The Virnagar party of Sadhaks under revered Sivananda-Adhvaryooji had already arrived even before my return and prayers, classes, Satsang and similar programmes were in full swing. This year's Sadhana period was unprecedented and even after the Aradhana functions, various activities continued right up till beginning of August. Now, after the devout annual worship of Bhagawan Ganesh (Lord Vighneshwara or Vinayaka) we look forward to an auspicious period of fresh beginnings and new undertakings, attended by unhampered progress and success. For, Lord Ganesha is verily the remover of all obstacles and difficulties and the giver of success. May His Divine Grace be upon one and all of you, dear readers, and may He bless and help you as the Vighna-vinashaka and the Siddhi-dayaka. May the Lord of Shiva's retinue be propitious unto you!
Gurudev's Birthday Anniversary this year must be to you a day of retrospect and spiritual reassessment and self-scrutiny. It must also be a day of rededication and zealous renewal of vows regarding your spiritual practices and inner life. Because we see that full two years have now gone by, since the passing into eternity of our worshipful Gurudev and it is needful to study yourself to see how you have fared on the Path without support of His personal guidance and the push of His actual presence. This passage of time also means to us that we have drawn nearer to our final hour of destined departure from this world of mortality. As days fly past the end too approaches the nearer. Hence you must always be up and doing in the Life Spiritual. Go onward until you attain the Goal. Ceaselessly endeavour into perfection. Each day live fully. Unrelaxing vigilance be your safeguard. May all the sublime spiritual qualities, that Gurudev embodied in his lifetime, be reborn within your being in all their glory and spiritual power. May the power and spirit and light of Sivananda be born afresh within you upon this sacred anniversary.
I have a special message to such of you who attended the Gurupurnima-Aradhana Sadhana programme here in the month of July. You were all given a Printed Form headed My Resolves and containing two parts A and B. The latter contains seven items, plus some sub-heads including one about Jnana Yajna. Please look up your copy of the Form at home and see how far you have been trying to fulfil these undertakings. The Mission is no doubt expanding and spreading. But it is very necessary that individual seekers must also make steady progress in their Sadhana life. This I expect and look for amongst all the members of this Society created by Gurudev. During the past two years gone by many D.L.S. Conferences have been conducted, numerous books of Gurudev have been published, new Branches have been inaugurated, the Divine Life message has been taken into all parts of the country and in countries abroad too and all this is doubtless good. But equally important is that you all grow and develop in Virtue, Renunciation, Sadhana, self-restraint and austerity. That you grow in prayer, in meditation, Vairagya and Wisdom day by day. More important that you excel in Service, Devotion, Meditation and God-realisation. Many of the members have undertaken to carry on Mantra Purascharana. A few fortunate Sadhaks stayed here after the Aaradhana and did Japa in the Ashram itself. Even as she did last year, the revered and worthy Shrimati Rajwati Shivraj of Delhi and her friend Sri Mohan Devi Mehta both completed two Purascharana of their Ishta Mantra during July/August. Besides them Shrimati Kamala Devi Seth, the daughter of Sri Maharaj Pannalalji of Amritsar, also did Anushthana of Mantra Japa for three weeks. While congratulating these worthy Sadhaks, I, at the same time, commend their example to you all.
I shall close now and do so with my earnest prayer to the Divine Mother, Whose annual worship is approaching near, to shower Her loving Grace upon you and grant you the fulfilment of all your right desires and Sattvic Sankalpas. May mother guide you along the radiant path that leads to your highest welfare and supreme and divine Felicity! Surrender yourself unto the Divine Mother and attain Immortality, Fearlessness and Freedom! Jai Gurudev!
With Regards, Prem and Om,
Yours in Sri Gurudev,
1st September, 1965
Sivanandashram Letter No. XXI