Editor's Message

Dear Readers,

For this edition of Sumiran, the theme is 'Devotee of the personal form of God is the highest yogi.' In the first article we explore that the one Supreme Entity manifests in three ways in the world and devotion to the personal form of God is considered the highest. Then, from Maharajji's lecture 'Jñāna marg leads to partial liberation,' we come to understand that the path of jñāna does not lead us to our ultimate goal of Divine Love.

As usual, we share highlights from Swamiji's recent USA tour and BM contributions. Learn about health benefits of jaggery in our wellness section. And finally, enjoy our bhog recipe of crunchy makhana.

Best Wishes,
Editor's Desk  
In This Issue

योगी ज्ञानी कोरी कल्पना, प्रेमी पावे नँदनंदना |

yogi jñānī korī kalpanā,
premī pāve naṅdanandanā
Hope of any divine attainment is but a figment of one's imagination and certainly unfulfilled for a yogi or gyani. Only the lover on the path of devotion will attain Nandanandana.
Website JKYog App Radio JKYog    BooksEvents Gift-shop
Devotee of the personal form of God is the highest yogi

Having seen the cosmic form of the Lord, Arjun, the great warrior, preferred the more personal form. But then he asked the Lord a question:

evaṁ satata-yuktā ye bhaktās tvāṁ paryupāsate 
ye chāpy akṣharam avyaktaṁ teṣhāṁ ke yoga-vittamāḥ 

Between those who are steadfastly devoted to your personal form and those who worship the formless Brahman, who do you consider to be more perfect in Yog?

The Lord responded:
mayy āveśhya mano ye māṁ nitya-yuktā upāsate 
śhraddhayā parayopetās te me yuktatamā matāḥ
Bhagavad Gita 12.2)

Those who fix their minds on me and always engage in my devotion with steadfast faith, I consider them to be the best yogis.

So the next question that arises is how does one fix his/her mind on God? There are two aspects to this question. First, what shape or form does God take or what shape or form do we imagine Him to be? Second, how do we fix our mind on God?

Let us now address the first question related to the shape or form of God. There are some who believe that God is formless, without qualities, and without attributes. Then there are others who believe that God has a form, qualities, and attributes. The truth is that He is both formless and with a form. Based on His leelas (pastimes), it is easy to imagine a form for Him. But if He is formless, how can the mind be fixed on Him?

Let us understand this through an example.  Suppose say you are standing by the railway tracks. A train is coming from the distance, with its headlight shining. It seems to you as if a light is approaching. When the train comes closer, you can see a shimmering form along with the light. Finally, when it comes and stands on the platform in front, you realize, "Oh! It's a train. I can see all these people sitting inside their compartments, and peeping out of their windows." The same train seemed like a light from far. As it came closer, it appeared to have a shimmering form along with the light. When it drew even nearer, you realized that it was a train. The train was the same, but on being closer to it, your understanding of its different attributes such as shape, color, passengers, compartments, doors, and windows grew.

Similarly, God is perfect and complete, and is the possessor of unlimited energies. His personality is replete with divine names, forms, pastimes, virtues, associates, and abodes. However, He is realized in varying levels of closeness, as the Brahman (formless all-pervading manifestation of God), the Paramātmā (the Supreme Soul seated in the heart of all living beings, distinct from the individual soul), and Bhagavān (the personal manifestation of God that descends upon the earth). The Bhāgavatam states:

vadanti tat tattva vidastattvaṁ yaj-jñānamadvayam 
brahmeti paramātmeti bhagavān iti śhabdyate (1.2.11)

"The knowers of the Truth have stated that there is only one Supreme Entity that manifests in three ways in the world-Brahman, Paramātmā, and Bhagavān." They are not three different Gods; rather, they are three manifestations of the one Almighty God. However, their qualities are different. This is just as water, steam, and ice are all made from the same substance-hydrogen dioxide molecules-but their physical qualities are different. If a thirsty person asks for water, and we give ice, it will not quench the thirst. Ice and water are both the same substance but their physical properties are different. Similarly, Brahman, Paramātmā, and Bhagavān are manifestations of the one Supreme Lord but their qualities are different.

Brahman is the all-pervading form of God, which is everywhere. The Śhwetāśhvatar Upaniṣhad states:
eko devaḥ sarvabhooteṣhu gooḍhaḥ sarvavyāpī sarvabhootāntarātmā (6.11)

"There is only one Supreme Entity. He is seated in everything and everyone." This all-pervading aspect of the Lord is called Brahman. It is full of eternality, knowledge, and bliss. However, in this aspect, God does not manifest His infinite qualities, enchanting personal beauty, and sweet pastimes. He is like a divine light that is nirguṇa (without qualities), nirvivśeṣh (without attributes), nirākār (without form).

Those who follow the path of jñāna yog worship this aspect of God. This is a distant realization of God as a formless light, just as the train from far appeared like light.

Paramātmā is the aspect of God that is seated in everyone's hearts. In verse 18.61, Shree Krishna states: "O Arjun, the Supreme Lord dwells in the hearts of all living beings. According to their karmas, he directs the wanderings of the souls, who are seated on a machine made of the material energy." Residing within, God notes all our thoughts and actions, keeps an account of them, and gives the results at the appropriate time. We may forget what we have done, but God does not. He remembers our every thought, word, and deed, since we were born. And not only in this life! In endless lifetimes, wherever we went, God went along with us. He is such a friend who never leaves us for even a moment. This aspect of God dwelling within is the Paramātmā.

The path of aṣhṭāṅg yog, as revealed by Patanjali in the Yog Darśhan, strives to realize God seated inside, and leads to the Paramātmā realization of God. Just as the train, which appeared as light from far, was seen as a shimmering form when it came closer, similarly, the realization of the Supreme Entity as Paramātmā is a closer realization than Brahman.

is the aspect of God that manifests with a personal form. The Śhrīmad Bhāgavatam states:
kṛiṣhṇam enam avehi tvam ātmānam akhilātmanām 
jagad-dhitāya so 'pyatra dehīvābhāti māyayā (10.14.55)

"The Supreme Lord Who is the Soul of all souls, has descended upon the earth in His personal form, as Shree Krishna, for the welfare of the world." In this Bhagavān aspect, God manifests all the sweetness of His names, forms, qualities, abodes, pastimes, and associates. These attributes exist in Brahman and Paramātmā as well, but they remain latent, just as fire is latent in a match-stick, and only manifests when it is struck against the igniting strip of the matchbox. Similarly, as Bhagavān, all the powers and aspects of God's personality, which are latent in the other forms, get revealed.

The path of bhakti, or devotion, leads to the realization of the Supreme Entity in His Bhagavān aspect. This is the closest realization of God, just as the details of a train become visible when it comes and stops in front of the observer. Hence, in verse 18.55, Shree Krishna states: "Only by loving devotion can I, the Supreme Divine Personality, be known as I am." Thus, Shree Krishna answers Arjun's question by clarifying that he considers the devotee of His personal form to be the highest yogi.

As far as the second question of fixing the mind on God, this is a three-step process. First, with the intellect's power of discrimination we decide that the world is not our goal. Hence, we forcefully remove the mind from the world. This requires effort.

Again, with the power of discrimination we understand that God alone is ours, and God-realization is our goal. Hence, we bring the mind to focus upon God. This also requires effort.

The mind comes away from God, and wanders back into the world. This does not require effort, it happens automatically.

We will have to do this repeatedly. Then slowly, the mind's attachment toward God will start increasing. And simultaneously, its detachment from the world will also increase. As this happens, it will become easier and easier to meditate. But in the beginning, we must be prepared for the battle involved in disciplining the mind. 
Jñāna marg leads to partial liberation
This article is an excerpt from Shree Maharajji's speech in Bhubaneswar in 2002. 
The word Brahman is written in the Vedas ānando brahma. The scriptures have three opinions about Brahman that I will describe briefly.

Some people say that Brahman is only formless. Without qualities, form, or attributes. And some people say that He is only with qualities, form, and attributes. And some people say, no, He is formless and with form. These three opinions have existed since eternity and will continue to exist because the wise and ignorant - both will always remain. That's why their opinions will also differ and be opposite. Let's see what the Vedas say.

First, understand that Brahman has two forms or God has two forms. One is the formless, without qualities, and without attributes. The other is with a personal form, qualities, and attributes. Meaning, "He is only formless" is incorrect. "He is only with a form" is also wrong. He is formless as well as with a form is correct. He is both with form and formless.

When both opinions are true, which one should we follow? Should we worship the formless aspect or the one with the personal form such as Ram and Krishna? Before worshipping the formless aspect, you have to be equipped with four essential qualifications. This is the condition. Shankaracharya also said - discrimination, total detachment, six virtuous qualities of sam, dam, uparati, titiksa shraddha, and samadhi, and a deep yearning for liberation - if one has mastered these four pre-requisites then they can listen to the A, B, C, D of Brahman. And these four pre-requisites are so difficult that of the six billion people, I don't believe that are eve six who get it. These days the babas who go around saying aham brahmāsmi (I am Brahman) and keep blowing air everywhere, who apparently broadcast the teaching of the formless Brahman - this is all deceitful!

The person who is their Guru, Shankaracharya has said that come only after practicing the four qualities. Like one can attend law school only after graduation.

"You are coming here to listen to the lecture?" "Yes" "There is news from someone that the roof of your house has fallen. Your son, father, brother, mother all died." "Ok ok, they died, its ok. I am coming, just wait a bit." Does anyone have the strength to say this? Very doubtful. He will run immediately to rescue his family. So this means that you are not eligible to follow the path of jñāna. It is near Impossible!

The heavenly damsel (apsara) went to Arjun's room at night. So seeing her, Arjun said, "Mother! Lord Indra is my father and you are his wife. This means you are my mother." Such a big conqueror (of senses) Arjun - Jitenandriya!, where established personalities like Vishwamitra, Parashar, etc. failed, he passed. He was the conqueror of the senses. That Arjun said to the Lord-
chanchalam hi manaḥ kṛiṣhṇa pramāthi balavad dṛiḍam

"The mind is fleeting. How will it worship the formless aspect?" Shree Krishna replied, "That requires complete control over the mind. Full 100 percent. Then you will be admitted in the first grade."

The Vedas sing glories that it is easy to gain control over the senses but to control the mind is impossible even for great sages, what to talk of ordinary folks! How will such folks make progress on the path of jñāna?

kahata kaṭhina samujhata kaṭhina sādhana kaṭhina viveka

"What are you saying, O jñānīji?" "Everyone is Brahman" "You are also Brahman, we are also Brahman?" "Yes" "So then who did you come to lecture to? If all are Brahman, then how can anyone (Brahman) give a lecture to the other?"  

Difficult to say (kahata kaṭhina) then difficult to understand (samujhata kaṭhina) then difficult to practice (sādhana kaṭhina) and even if one is able to do it even then he will not be liberated from Maya. No jñānī can attain liberation by worshipping the formless. Why? Because God gave this challenge in the Gita:

māmeva ye prapadhyante māyāmetām taranti te

Only those who come to me can be liberated from Maya and the jñānī will never come to me so his Maya will never go away either.

See, Maya is of two kinds - one vidyā, one avidyā. So even if a jñānī gets the knowledge after doing sādhanā in endless lifetimes, his avidyā maya can be eliminated but the vidyā maya cannot be finished. Eliminating vidyā maya requires the grace of God i.e. the personal form with qualities graces.

The formless, without qualities, attributeless Brahman does not do anything. His definition is non-doer. How can he bestow grace? Shankaracharya says, "Maharaj, you will not bestow grace, O Brahman God! Neither do you get angry nor do you bestow grace. You do not have a physical form, nor mind, nor intellect. You just exist. So what can we ask you?" So?

Shankarcharya continues, "O Narayan! The personal form of God with qualities! I have come to you. That's why O jñānīji, please bestow your grace!"  "Why?" "The vidyā maya cannot be eliminated. I am tired. I am tired after trying for endless lifetimes."

That can be any jñānī - his vidyā maya cannot be eliminated. Gunavarika maya cannot be eliminated, swarupavarika maya can be eliminated. So then even after reaching such a high state, he will fall.

Even after attaining liberation, he will still fall. He will fall into the bondage of karm. He will become attached to the world. The liberated noble soul Paramhans (great sage) Jadbharat became attached to the child of a doe. He took pity on it. He looked after it and raised it. When he was about to die, he kept thinking of the baby deer, so in his next life, he became a deer. Jadbharat Paramhans! What to talk of ordinary folks?

So no jñānī without the grace of God can be totally liberated... and when will God grace? When we worship and serve him. Become submissive, surrender to him, then you will earn His grace. He will not bestow it just like that - because you are jñānī...You will not get it just like that. Whether you are wise or ignorant, it will be bestowed only upon surrender. It is based upon your bhakti. That's why Shankaracharya says that the knowledge attained through God's grace is liberating. The knowledge earned by our efforts will not liberate us.

It is only through God's grace that Maya will leave us. There is no other way. One can practice austerities, do karm, learn jñān, do yajña, anything... he will get everything else. He can become the king of heaven, attain the siddhis (anima, garima, laghima, etc.), attain the material (ridhi) opulences (nidhi)... big big things, that you think are bigger than God...  but Maya will not go away. Vishwamitra had the ability to create heaven and he failed. He hid behind Vashisht's hut with an axe and the intention of killing him. So much hatred! This is a form of Maya. So first thing, no one is qualified to progress on the path of knowledge (jñān marg). And even if one goes, vidyā maya will not go away. 

Featured Video

What is God's purpose behind your struggles
Look back at your life and reflect on all those moments that have made you stronger, smarter and a better person. You will realize that your most inspiring stories come from your struggles in life. That is God's purpose behind your struggles.

Click here to watch an inspiring video by Swami Mukundananda, where he explains the reason why God places struggles in our life and how we should deal with them.

News & Updates

Dallas Yoga Fest, 2017   

Dallas Yoga Fest 2017 was a big success! Beginning early morning yoga, meditation, pranayam, and guided relaxation sessions filled to capacity. Exuberant participants of all ages came from all over the DFW area and some even further, to take advantage of the variety of quality sessions including yoga. The beautiful vibrations from such an enthusiastic an d diverse group coming together nourishing body, mind and soul filled the venue with an indescribable peaceful and glowing energy. Multiple sessions were conducted in parallel for Yoga, meditation, holistic health sessions, Kids Yoga and many more.

The Dallas Morning News did a special coverage of the Dallas Yoga Fest organized by JKYog on the occasion of International Yoga Day. More than 1500 participants from children to seniors attended sessions on Yoga, holistic health and natural living.


The event hosted some of the most prominent Yoga Teachers, Doctors, Healers, and Health practitioners throughout the day.  Swami Mukundananda's keynote address on the topic of 'Yoga for Joyful Living' was one of the key highlights of the event. 
West Coast Retreat with Swamiji, 2017

The West Coast Retreat of 2017 was an event never to be forgotten!

The extended chanting on Day 2 left everyone so intoxicated with divine bliss so much so that no one was willing to leave after the session came to a close. The parikrama held earlier that evening comprised of fun and games, Radhey Shyam chanting, and a meditation next to a river. The serene and beautiful environment served as the perfect backdrop and made everyone feel as though they were at the banks of the Yamuna in divine Vrindavan.
The Youth Program was a phenomenal success as for the first time it included a multitude of events - regular classes, music lessons, Bhagavad Gita classes, and team activities. On the last day, the teens displayed their musical talents by showcasing what they learnt in these two days. The Bal-Mukund kids were not behind. They could not wait to attend their sessions and would push the parents to drop them off to their class on time!

Chapter 2 of the Bhagavad Gita was chosen as the topic for the lecture series. Everyone enjoyed the lectures because as usual Swamiji filled it with witty anecdotes and practical advice to help us move forward on this journey. As the retreat came to a close, people left with a mix of gratitude for such a beautiful experience and a heavy heart that it was time to go back to their everyday life.  Click here for more photos. 




Yoga, Meditation, and Lecture Programs

Seven Mindsets for Success in Life and Beyond, a Life Transformation Program held in Kendall Park, NJ was very well received by the locals. Hundreds of people attended the program and felt inspired to the learn the simple yet powerful techniques of mind management. The daily programs included yoga and meditation sessions along with soulful chantings.

The Life Transformation Workshop was held for the very first time in New Jersey. Swami Mukundananda introduced the techniques of 'KripaluPadhati' and 'KripaluPrakriya' to an eager audience.  During the workshop,  participants had the opportunity to practice the techniques and see how they can apply them in their daily lives.

The  Seven Mindsets for Success program successfully concluded in Chalfont, PA. The hall was filled to capacity with more than 200 people on Day 1. The audience was absorbed in the knowledge shared by Swamiji over the course of seven days. One by one Swamiji discussed the mind sets that help us to achieve our goals and live a truly joyful life.

Click here for photos

Morning walk with Swamiji

Swamiji and the devotees of New Jersey went for a refreshing morning walk to Duke Island Park in Bridgewater. The park is home to numerous trail and sports fields. Devotees spent some quality time with Swamiji talking, chanting, and enjoying a morning walk.

The morning walk at Chalfont, PA was energizing and the devotees enjoyed this time with Swamiji.
Click here for photos. 
Swamiji's Upcoming Events, 2017  
June 24th to 30th    
Chantilly, VA   
July 4th to 11th     
RKT Inaugural Ceremony
Allen, TX
July 21st to 27th   
Richmond Hill, NY   
July 29th to Aug 4th 
Allen, TX   
 Aug 5th to 11th   
  Morrisville, NC 
Aug 12th to 18th   
Centennial, CO  
Aug 19th to 25th   
Houston, TX 
Aug 26th to Sep 1st 
 Hoffman Estates, IL 
Save the Dates for Upcoming Retreats with Swamiji This Year
Jul 14th to 16th   
Reading, PA   
Sept 2nd to 4th
  Dallas, TX
For details, click here

Daily Sadhana- Spiritual Practice Made Easy!
Daily Sadhana is a unique online service which allows spiritual seekers to acquire spiritual knowledge anywhere, anytime, and at your own pace!
Wellness for Life
Health Benefits of Jaggery
Jaggery also called gur in hindi is basically unrefined sugar obtained from raw concentrated sugarcane juice. Although gur is also made from date palm and the sap of coconut, the one made from sugar cane is commonly used in many tradional Indian dishes. Gur contains minerals and phyto chemicals which makes it a healthy substitute to white sugar because which only adds empty calories. Jaggery is rich store house of nutrients as it contains important vitamins, minerals like potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, selenium, calcium and phosphorus and antioxidants.

Prevents constipation
Jaggery prevents constipation by activating the digestive enzymes, which stimulates bowel movement and acts as diuretic. That is why many people eat gur at the end their meal.

Excellent Detox
Jaggery cleanses the liver by flushing out all the harmful toxins from the body. A piece of jiggery can be a very effective detox agent.
Prevents Anemia

Jaggery is a very rich in iron and helps boost hemoglobin level. Adding a small amount of jaggery in everyday meal helps prevent anemia. It is healthy to have it during pregnency.

 Effective cough '& cold relief
Jaggery is an effective home remedy in cold. It also prevents respiratory ailments like asthma and bronchitis.. Add gur to ginger tea or basil tea instead of white sugar or simply mix it with warm water for best results.
Click here to read the entire article.
JKYog Presents
Personality Development Classes for Children
Like us on Facebook
Visit our blog 

The 2016-17 year of NC Bal Mukund came to a close with a big party. The pool was the main attraction for the kids as it was difficult to pull them out for lunch! All the kids were given certificates and gifts as they left for home.  

We are deeply grateful to the parents for enrolling their children in our prog ram and making it such a huge success. At this event, we also took the opportunity to share the results of the survey sent earlier to the parents. Parents generously provided ideas on helping this program reach greater heights next year. To show their commitment, nearly all of them are enrolling their children for the next year as well!
Click here for more photos 

Bhog Recipe

  Phool Makhana
   A very healthy snack for kids as well as adults.
  • 3cups -  Phool Makhana
  • 1  tsp  -  Salt
  • 1  tsp  -  Pepper
  • 1  tsp  -  Red chilli powder
  • 1  tsp  -  Ghee


  • In a non stick shallow pan roast Makhana first for 10 minutes or until it get crunchy.
    Cool Makhana for few minutes and transfer it in a different pan.
  • Add ghee in an shallow pan. Then add Makhana to it. Stir fry for few minutes, on a low flame.
  • Sprinkle salt , pepper and red chilly powder to it . Mix it properly.
  • Once they cool down store  makhana in air tight container.
  • If you desire add nuts as well.
Contact us

The Editor JKYog:  XVII/3305, 1st Floor

Ranjit Nagar (Near PUSA)

New Delhi - 110008, India

7405  Stoney Point Dr, Plano
TX 75025, USA