Editor's Message

Dear Readers,

March is typically the month we celebrate Holi. Therefore, we dedicate this issue of Sumiran to celebrating this joyous festival and wish everyone a Happy Holi! But have you ever wondered what the true meaning of Holi is and why we celebrate this festival? Find out about Holi festival in our two articles: "Why do we celebrate Holi?" and "True happiness lies in knowing God."

We also share highlights from Swamiji's Nepal tour. Finally, view how our various BM kids celebrated Mahashivratri, and enjoy our special bhog recipe for this occasion. If you happen to try it, do share your experience with us!

Best Wishes,
Editor's Desk  
In This Issue

शिशु बनि करु क्रंदना, भज्यो आवे नँदनंदना ।

śhiśhu bani karu krandanā,
bhajyo āve nañdanandanā
Weep for Him like a helpless child and Nandanandana will come running to you.      
Website JKYog App Radio JKYog    BooksEvents Gift-shop

वृन्दावन, धूम मची होरी ।
vrindāvana, dhooma machī horī 
The festival of Holi is being celebrated with great enthusiasm in Vrindavan.
सखन सखिन को, सखिन सखन को,
लै  पिचकारिन रँग बोरी ।
sakhana sakhina ko, sakhina sakhana ko,
lai pichakārina rañga borī
The sakhas (cowherd boys) and sakhis (cowherd maidens) are spraying color on each other using their water guns, drenching one another with colored water.

लली लाल मण्डल बिच ठाढ़ें, दुहुँन दुहुँन किय सरबोरी ।
lalī lāla maṇḍalabicha ṭhāṛheṇ, duhuñna duhuñna kiya saraborī
Radha Rani and Shree Krishna are standing in the middle of the circle. They too have colored each other from head to toe.
लाल गुलाल लाल भये बाद, लाल लाल भइ ब्रजखोरी ।
lāla gulāla lāla bhaye bādar, lāla lāla bhai brajakhorī
There is so much red 'gulal' being thrown around that even the clouds and all the lanes of Braj have become red.
स्रस्त व्यस्त सबके पटभूषन, करत परस्पर झकझोरी । 
srasta vyasta sabake paṭabhooṣhana, karata paraspara jhakajhorī
In the hustle of Holi, everyone's clothes and ornaments have become loose and messy.
तब 'कृपालु' कह, साँझ भई अब, कालि होय होरी हो री ।
taba 'kṛipālu' kaha, sāñjha bhaī aba, kāli hoya horī ho rī  
Says Shree 'Kripalu', "It is evening now, hence the play of Holi should be stopped, and tomorrow we will again play Holi here." 
Why do we celebrate Holi?
Holi is the festival of fun and frolic; it is the spring festival of India when everybody comes together on to the platform of love and harmony. Forgetting all the past animosity, differences, or friction, people celebrate this festival embracing one another exchanging greetings - 'Holi Mubarak'.

The origins of this festival of Holi go very far back in history. Of the many wives celestial sage Kashyap had, two were most prominent - Aditi and Diti. Aditi is also revered as the 'Mother of the Gods' as her sons became the celestial gods such as Indra (god of rain), Vayu (god of wind), Agni (god of fire), etc. Diti, on the other hand, bore two demons - Hiranya ksh and Hiranyakashipu.

Hiranyaksh was the younger one and was considered the personification of greed. Just as greed is insatiable and keeps growing, such was the nature of Hiranyaksh as well. It is said that he would grow by a hand's height every day until he became so tall that when he walked the earth would totter. People were extremely terrorized by this evil Hiranyaksh, and as a consequence of their supplication at the lotus feet of the Lord, the descension of the Supreme Lord took place in the avatar of Varaha (boar). Varaha killed Hiranyaksh in a tremendous war that is described in the Bhagavatam more in the form of an inter-galactic war. When the news of his brother's death reached Hiranyakashipu, he became extremely angry with God. Overcome with hatred for Lord Vishnu, Hiranyakashipu went to perform austerities so that he could obtain special powers and take revenge upon Vishnu for having killed his brother Hiranyaksh.

Hiranyakashipu performed tremendous austerities and the heat created by his austerities started burning the universe until Brahma had to intervene. So Brahma asked Hiranyakashipu, "What do you want?" After paying his respects and offering obesciences, Hiranyakashipu said, "Please grant me this boon that I should not die either in the day or in the night. I should not die either outside the house or inside the house. Neither should I die on the earth nor in the sky. I should not be killed by a human nor a beast nor by any weapons." Hiranyakashipu used the complete power of his intellect. However, he forgot that it is God himself who empowers the intellect and with our intellect we cannot outwit God. Brahma bestowed this boon upon him.

In the meantime, Hiranyakashipu's wife, Kayadhu, was carrying a baby in her womb, Hiranyakashipu's son. With Hiranyakash dead and Hiranyakashipu away, the celestial gods waged a war and created havoc in their kingdom. Thinking him to be another demon, Indra decided to kill the baby in Kayadhu's womb. The great sage, Narad, came to know and he intervened. He convinced Indra to let him take Kayadhu and the yet unborn baby to his ashram until Hiranyakashipu returned. There, through Kayadhu's ear, he instructed the little child. Now Kayadhu being inert in her intelligence, overcome by ignorance, did not benefit from those divine instructions. But the child, Prahlad, in the womb, heard them, contemplated upon them, and implemented them while yet in the womb.

Hiranyakashipu was delighted to return home with the boon from Brahma and to his youngest child. However, he found that Prahlad has this tremendous devotional inclination towards the Lord. "How dare my son worship my enemy!" thought Hiranyakashipu. He entrusted Pralad's education to the children of the demon guru, Shukracharya, in the hopes that Prahlad would learn the ways of the material world and carry on his legacy as the demon king. Unfortunately for Hiranyakashipu, not only did Prahlad not learn the ways of the material world and the demons, but he also succeeded in imparting this spiritual knowledge to his classmates!

Now Hiranyakashipu was livid. He ordered his soldiers to kill Prahlad. They tried various things such as attacking him with their tridents and other weapons, pushing him down a mountain, throwing him in a cell with poisonous snakes, bringing in huge elephants hoping they trample over him, etc. However, each time, Prahlad would remain unscathed because he saw his loving Lord Vishnu in those men, beasts, and weapons as well.

Then Hiranyakashipu's sister, Holika, was called. She had this boon that fire could not burn her. Thus, a fire was lit. Holika took Prahlad in her lap and sat inside the fire. Sitting there Prahlad very casually remarked, "My Supreme Lord Vishnu is in every atom of his creation. He is all pervading in this fire. I am feeling as if a sheet of lotus flowers has been spread over me." The consequence is well known. Holika got burned and Prahlad came out from there alive.
The demons then got hold of some pandits and with the help of the pandits they did a yajña or fire sacrifice and through the fire sacrifice they created a being with the hope that this being would kill Prahlad. But the being that was created, instead of killing Prahlad, killed the pandits who had performed the yajña. Seeing the dead pandits, Prahlad was moved to pity, and said, "If my faith in the all-pervading presence of God is complete, to vindicate my faith, may God bring these dead pandits back to life." God responded and the pandits became live again.

Flabbergasted, the demons took Prahlad to Hiranyakashipu and they said, "O Emperor! We don't know what kind of a son you have. He seems to be invincible and we are not able to kill him by any means." Hiranyakashipu then asked Prahlad, "Where is your Vishnu?" Prahlad responded, "Father, my Supreme Lord is everywhere in this world." But Prahlad pointed in four directions: "He is in you (a demon). He is in me as well (a child). He is in this blade of grass (a living entity) and He is in this stone pillar (a non-living entity)."

When Prahlad pointed to the stone pillar, Hiranyakashipu questioned, "If God resides in this pillar, why can I not see him?" Saying so, he hit the pillar with his fist. To prove Prahlad's faith, God manifested from the pillar. This was the Nrsingh avatar in the form of a half-man, half-lion.  After a fight, he placed Hiranyakashipu on his thighs and said, "Look, you evil person! You had asked for a boon from Brahma. I am not violating that boon. This is neither day nor night; it is dusk. I am neither man nor beast; I am a combination of both. You are neither on the earth nor in the sky; you are on my thighs. We are neither outside the house nor inside; we are in the doorway. I am not killing you by weapons, I am going to kill you with my own nails." And he ripped apart Hiranyakashipu.

After killing Hiranyakashipu, God lifted up Prahlad in his lap and said, "My child! I am extremely pleased with your devotion. Ask what you want." Prahlad asked for a very inspiring boon - something for all of us to contemplate upon. Prahlad said, "My Lord, I am your servant. The job of a servant is to serve and not to ask. If I ask, I will become a businessman. I will not remain a servant. Nevertheless, if it is your instruction that I should ask, I must obey, for it's the duty of a servant to obey the master's instructions and my master, the Lord, is saying, ask. Alright, my Lord, this is what I ask. I ask you this that I may never ask you for anything ever again in future. In other words, I ask you that you make me free of selfish desire so that I may be able to perfect my selfless love for you."

As a result, the festival of Holi is celebrated in the commemoration of God coming to protect His devotee. It is a celebration of faith and a reaffirmation in the protection that God offers to those who take His lotus feet as their only shelter.
True happiness lies in knowing God
This is an excerpt from Shree Maharajji's speech on the significance of Holi.

You people have celebrated many Holis, but there might only be a few people who have thought about and discussed the festival of Holi in detail. Why do we celebrate Holi? What is the secret behind it? We will discuss this now.

The principle is that everybody does every work for a reason, for a cause. No work is without a reason.  Every personality whether a human, or a God-realized Saint, or God himself-the work of all of them is done with a purpose. Even we people have a purpose-it is not just related to celebrating Holi - but think about all your works. What is the purpose? We have done all our works with only one goal - to attain happiness. Nevertheless, we kept receiving pain and sorrow. The more we run towards happiness, the more pain and sorrow we receive.

Happiness is called that which is unlimited in scope, lasts forever, and pain or sorrow can never overcome it. You are happy one moment and sad the next, then happy, then sad... what kind of a disease is this? Darkness can never reign over light. It is an indisputable principle. Then how can pain rule over happiness? That happiness which can be overruled by pain, that happiness which can be snatched once we have received it, that is not happiness; it is an illusion; it is deceitful, it is confusing. This kind of illusory happiness exists everywhere that Maya rules-all the way upto Brahmalok!

Happiness is not of one kind, it is of five kinds: see, hear, smell, taste, and touch. That's it! Material happiness is of five kinds; there can be no sixth. The world is also like this. We first ask where we think we will get a lot of happiness, we got it too, but next time it is less, and then even less, and less and less until it finishes. Then we go as far as to say, "To see that girl for whom he (a boy) would drive around for hours on end, when that girl married him, so slowly slowly it got to the point that 'I don't even want to see her anymore. I've got such a witch!'"

"This is the same witch for whom you would go driving circles around her home?"

"Yes, she is the same but there was confusion."

This disease is without any limits. Whatever objects are there in this world, they all are ruled by these five kinds of happiness: sound, touch, sight, taste, smell. All the happiness that is māyic or belongs to this māyic world is small, even within limits is small, is limited in scope, and even their duration is limited; they are destructible. That's why this is not happiness. In other words, the happiness we are seeking is something else. The happiness we are seeking is addressed by the name Brahman. That same happiness is also called paramatma, khudah, God, etc. You give it many names.  So removal of pain is not our goal. Our goal it is to obtain true happiness.

For example, no one wants the end of poverty. He keeps thinking, 'money should come, money should come..." Why? To end poverty, so that poverty goes away. He is stressed day and night about two rotis and still didn't get any today. He is worried about two sets of clothes but still didn't get any. Concerned about one room but still sleeping on the footpath. This is poverty. This is he is unhappy. So he wants money. He wants an end to poverty. He does not want an end to poverty. "Then what?" He wants material happiness (bhog sukh). This is a fact. Once he gets the money, he will buy a house, a car, nice clothes to wear, good food to eat, he will see good things... meaning he wants satisfaction of the material senses.

We understand now that we are getting this happiness daily so then what is the matter? We also understand that the happiness we are experiencing is mayaic, kalpanik; it is a shadow of the bliss. The bliss that we desire, upon acquiring which there is nothing else left to acquire; no other desire is created; no wish is left unfulfilled, that becomes complete. This happiness exists forever.

We have experienced the happiness of Brahmalok unlimited times; unlimited times we became the king of heaven, Indra, as well but we came down anyways. That was only for a few days; it was all temporary.

So the happiness that is true happiness is Brahman, God, paramatma. Using that knowledge, we will get knowledge of everything and all ignorance will be destroyed. And once we attain the purpose of that knowledge, we achieve our goal.

The summary then, is that our goal is God. Once we know him, the ignorance is gone, attachment is also gone, the three guṇas (sattva, rajo, tamo), three types of karmas (sanchit, prarabdh, kriyaman), three types of dosh (mael, vikeshep, avaran), five types of pain (panchakalesh: avidya, asmita, rag, dwesh, abhinivesh), five sheaths (panch kośh: ānandmaya, vijñānamaya, manomaya, prāṇamaya, annamaya), dualities (dwandh) - all finish.

Such was the devotion of Prahlad. While still in his mother's womb, he received the spiritual knowledge from Sage Narad and became a devotee of the Lord. The Lord protected him each time his father, Hiranyakashipu, tried to kill him. Finally, the Lord descended as Nrsingh avatar to protect his devotee and rid the earth of the evil that had been tormenting for ages. 

Featured Video

How to Stop Caring What Others Think Of You!
As much as we want to be liked by everyone, pleasing everyone can be quite exhausting. No matter what you do people will say what they have to say, they will think what they have to think.        
Watch Swami Mukundananda's video and find out how you can develop that attitude where you are not disturbed by praise or criticism from others.
Click here to watch the video 

News & Updates


Swami Mukundananda started his Nepal tour on 27th Feb after a gap of almost 3 years. Devotees welcomed Swamiji at Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu.
Click here for photos.

A four-day sadhana shivir was held in Birgunj, Nepal. Sadhana continued throughout the day with keertans, pravachan, aarti, and lots of devotion in the divine presence of Swamiji.  A grand parikrama was organized in the presence of Swamiji where hundreds of people participated in the procession . Joyous kirtans and bhajans filled the streets of Birgunj and the public was happy to join in and sing along. Click here for photos.

Radha Govind Samiti, Delhi organised a special picnic on March 5th that was graced by Swami Mukundananda's presence. Devotees enjoyed kirtan, games and snacks in Swamiji's presence.  Click here for photos 
Swamiji's Upcoming Events, 2017  
March 17th to 20th 
Banara, Odisha   
March 31st to April 5th  
Orlando, FL
April 5th  
Orlando, FL
April 6th to 12th
Tampa, FL
April 13th to 19th
  Fort Lauderdale, FL
April 27th to May 3rd 
Sunnyvale, CA  
May 4th to 10th 
Milpitas, CA
Save the Dates for Upcoming Retreats with Swamiji This Year
April 21st to 23rd 
Tampa, FL    
May 27th to 29th  
Visalia, CA  
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!

Holi Hangama

A fun-filled program brought to you by Radha Krishna Temple of Dallas

26 MAR
12:00 PM to 5:00 PM  

3700 Hogge Dr, Parker, TX- 75002

  Contact: 408-674-6602   

  • Rich Cultural Program

  • DJ, Dance and Color Play

  • Lentil Rangoli Competition

  • Games, Food and Desi Bazaar

  • Cooking Without Fire Competition

  • Keynote Speech by Swami Mukundananda

Wellness for Life
How to Combat Stress with Right Nutrition
Stress is a world phenomenon impacting both men and women alike disrupting lifestyle and leading to a plethora of health issues resulting in decreased productivity at work and soured relationship on the personal front. It is not a physical illness, the actual culprit is stress. Our metabolis m is designed to experience stress if not supplemented by proper diet and nutrition coupled with physical activity. Stress releases hormones like cortisol and adrenaline in the body which leads to health issues like headache, insomnia, diabetes and hypertension and obesity. The excess release of these hormones the body secretes amino acids, potassium and phosphorous which adversely affects the immune system of the body. People with balanced diet are definitely less likely to be stressed than someone with poor diet.

Stress-busting foods

There are some foods which help stabilize blood sugar and equalize the emotional response.

Whole grain: Stay away from junk and switch over to whole grains, cereals like ragi, oats whole wheat, pulses and quinoa in daily meal to maintain a steady supply of energy. These cereals are rich in vitamin B carbohydrate, proteins and fats.

Green leafy vegetables:  Asparagus and Spinach are very high in folic acid and vitamin B and helps the body produce mood regulating neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which lowers the risk of depression. Fruits and vegetables of any sort help keep the nerves calm. People consuming food rich in folate were more stress free.

Cottage cheese: Food rich in protein contain large amount of amino acid called tryptophan that converts to serotonin. Cottage cheese is a rich source of protein for vegetarians.

Nuts: Almonds and walnuts are high in monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids. They are also rich source of vitamin B2, vitamin E, zinc and magnesium. Nuts are a treasure trove of nutrition.

Vitamin C: Citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C, which reduces the production of stress hormones and strengthen the immune system. They are very fibrous and low in calorie

Click here to read the entire article. 
JKYog Presents
Personality Development Classes for Children
Like us on Facebook
Visit our blog 

BM Singapore kids celebrated Maha Shivratri by making Shivratri-themed fridge magnets for Crafts Session.

Bal-Mukund, NC also celebrated Maha Shivratri.  Teachers gave a presentation explaining importance and significance of MahaShivratri and taught them a melodious Shiv Bhajan and Bal-Mukunds offered flowers to Lord Shiva . They also learned yoga - ChakkiChalan Asana, Utthita & Parivrtta Trikonasanas & finally meditated on Lord Shiva.

Bal-Mukund, Bay Area had a great start, with the spring semester rolling out. Children learnt shlokas, heard character-building story, practiced Hindi Varnmala alphabets, practiced Yoga, learnt Pranayam, Kripalu Values, facts about India, learnt about Mahatma Gandhi, and danced to Lord Krishna's bhajan in the end.

Click here for more photos. 

Bhog Recipe

Mixed Berry Smoothie
Full of antioxidants for a great way to start the day
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 2
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • ½ cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
  • ½ cup strawberries, fresh or frozen
  • ½ cup blackberries, fresh or frozen
  • ½ cup pomegranate
  • 3 medjool dates (pitted)
  • ½ cup ice  

  1. Blend all ingredients until smooth and creamy smoothie.
  2. Enjoy chilled.
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