Editor's Message

Dear Readers,
This year, Navratra's are from Sept 21 - Sept 29 with Dusherra on Sept 30th. Dusherra is a major festival, signifying the victory of good over evil. Let us use this opportunity to focus on the hard work of removing the evil that resides within ourselves. To encourage us to stay on this path, the theme for this issue of Sumiran is 'Benefits of Practising Devotion to God'

Shree Maharajji guides us to do this via the first article titled 'Why is Bhakti Considered Auspicious?' The second article titled 'Devotion leads to Manifestation of Divine Qualities' continues with the same topic as it elaborates more on the core theme.

The last US retreat of the year was held during Labor Day weekend at Denison, TX. As a part of this retreat, Swamiji gave a lecture on the occasion of Radhashtami at the recently inaugurated Radha Krishna Temple at Allen, TX. 

Swamiji is on his final leg of the US tour visiting each city briefly.  Children attending Bal-Mukund sessions at the Labour Day Retreat in Texas had a a great experience. Scroll down to read more in our BM Contributions section. Lastly, enjoy the bhog recipe of Malpua for this festive season.
Best Wishes,
Editor's Desk  
In This Issue
जीव लक्ष्य भक्ति से मना, मन की है शुद्धि करना |
jīva lakṣhya bhakti hai manā,
mana kī hai śhuddhi karanā
 "The goal of the living being is to attain divine love (prema bhakti). To that end the mind needs to be purified (by devotional practice or sadhana bhakti"
- Jagadguru Shree Kripaluji Maharaj
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Why is Bhakti Considered Auspicious?

Bhakti requires engaging the mind in the divine realm- abodes, forms, names, pastimes, virtues, and saints of God. In the Bhakti Rasāmṛit Sindhu, Rupa Goswami writes:
śhubhāniprīṇanaṁ sarvajagatāmanuraktatā 
sadguṇāḥ sukhamityādīnyākhyātāni manīṣhibhiḥ
meaning, bhakti is considered śhubhadā i.e. it brings auspiciousness to all, the divine virtues are exhibited to a greater extent, and it bestows happiness. The natural question that arises is how. Let us dig into the details to fully appreciate the nature of bhakti and the three ways in which it brings about auspiciousness to all.
Bhakti is pleasing to all of creation
When we engage in bhakti, we satisfy all of creation.  
yenarchito haristena tarpitāni jagantyapi 
rajyante jantavastatra sthāvarā jangamā api  
(Padma Purāṇ)
In this verse, Ved Vyas states that when we worship the source of all creation, Shree Krishna, it satiates all moving and non-moving beings, just as when we irrigate the root of a tree, the water automatically reaches its branches, twigs, leaves, fruit, and flowers. 

There are two points to note here. First is that we should worship Shree Krishna with all sincerity. When we do this, then all the celestial gods and goddesses are also satiated.
Second point to note is that by worshipping Shree Krishna, the mind becomes pure. Thus, we become everyone's well-wisher and stop harboring negative sentiments towards all. Once others realize that we desire the best for them and do not harbor any ill-will against them, the sentiments are reciprocated. In this manner, bhakti starts bringing about auspiciousness to all.
Bhakti manifests the divine qualities easily
yasyāsti bhakti bhagavaty akiñchanā
sarvair guṇais tatra samāsate surāḥ
harāv abhaktasya kuto mahadguṇā
manorathenāsati dhāvato bahiḥ
(Shreemad Bhagavatam 5.18.12)
When we engage in bhakti, the divine traits of compassion, empathy, forgiveness, gratitude, non-violence, respect for others, tolerance, truth, etc. that are inherent within the soul begin to manifest to a greater extent. God is the ultimate epitome of these qualities and as tiny parts of Him, these virtues are inherent within our soul as well. To the extent our mind is purified, these qualities are exhibited in our behavior as well.
When we exhibit negative behavior, repeated chintan (contemplation) of it will not bring about a change. To change it, we have to become aware of our current behavior and take steps to change it. This is just as when we are sick. Repeated chintan of the fact that we are sick will not bring about any change. We must take the appropriate medication to see the change.  
Similarly, our negative behavior stems from ignorance or faulty knowledge. Repeated chintan of the correct knowledge coupled with affection for Krishna attracts His grace which then brings about the change we seek. To the extent we practice bhakti, our sins (pāp), the seed of the sins (bīja), and ignorance (avidyā) are destroyed thereby making room for the divine virtues to be exhibited.
Devotion Leads to Manifestation of the Divine Qualities

Devotion to Lord Krishna is the primary purpose of human life. The more we allow our love for Him to grow, and the more we see Him in everyone, the more we notice a change in our behavior towards others. This is typically a change for the better as the divine qualities of compassion, empathy, forgiveness, gratitude, non-violence, respect for others, tolerance, truthfulness, etc. start manifesting to a greater extent. This is because devotion leads to purification of the mind. To the extent the mind becomes pure, the natural divine qualities of the soul shine through.
Compassion and forgiveness towards all
The pain of separation from Krishna is transformed into compassion, empathy, and forgiveness for others as our mind is purified and we are better able to recognize their pain. This was clearly evident in the life of King Ambrish.  
Sage Durvasa was the son of Sage Atri and his wife Anasuya. He was born as an incarnation of Lord Shiv and was known for his terrible rage. According to the legend, King Ambrish was maintaining the Ekadshi fast and had invited Sage Durvasa to dinner to break the fast. The Sage went to the river Yamuna for a bath before partaking the meal. The appropriate time came to break the fast but the Sage had not yet returned.  
To break the fast in the absence of the Sage would be great disrespect to the Sage. And to not break the fast during the appropriate time would result in a loss-it would undo everything the fast was kept for. The King was in a deep dilemma. Finally, at the bequest of his minister, he broke the fast with a sip of water before the Sage came. The Sage became aware of this act and became angry at the perceived disrespect from the King. Consequently, he decided to punish the King by killing him. As soon as he thought so, the Lord set off this Sudarshan Chakra after the Sage.  
The great Sage ran to Indra, Brahma, Shiv, and finally to the Lord himself to beg forgiveness but to no avail. The Lord instructed him to seek forgiveness from the King himself. The Sage finally went to the King to seek his forgiveness. Despite the fact that the great Sage had tried to kill the King, the King forgave him. It was only then that the Lord recalled His disc.
Hatred is transformed into love
Just as carbon stored deep within the layers of the earth is transformed into a beautiful diamond due to the unrelenting pressure it faces, hatred within is transformed into pure love. This love is directed towards all as we become increasingly aware that Krishna resides in everyone and everything.  
This point is exemplified in the story of Prahlad, a five-year-old devotee of Lord Vishnu, whose father Hiranyakashipu, a demon king, was a sworn enemy of the Lord. Hiranyakashipu had repeatedly ordered his son to be killed. And yet, after each attempt, Prahlad would walk away unscathed and unharmed. During all these trials, not once did Prahlad fill up with hatred, anger, or resentment at his father, not once did he seek the consultation of a therapist on the grounds of emotional distress, and neither did he run away from home to escape his father's wrath.
Finally, becoming exasperated Hiranyakashipu asked Prahlad: kva sau? "Where is this Lord Vishnu whom you worship?" Prahlad answered: sa sarvatra. "Father, He is everywhere." However, Prahlad pointed in four directions: "God is in you (a demon); He is in me (a child); He is in this blade of grass (living entity); He is also in this stone pillar (non-living entity)."
Hiranyakashipu sniggered, "If God is in the stone pillar then why can I not see him?" He hit the pillar with all his might. And lo and behold! To prove Prahlad's faith, God manifested in the form of Nrisingh Bhagavan, from the pillar. One of the twenty-four descensions of God mentioned in the Shreemad Bhagavatam is Lord Nrisingh, who appeared from the stone pillar of a demon king, thereby proving that God is all-pervading and omnipresent. And when we truly start believing it, our hatred starts getting transformed into love.
Anger and resentment are churned into gratefulness and tolerance
The anger and resentment at unfulfilled desires is churned into gratefulness for everything we have and thus tolerance for others as we realize that everything we have is not due the justice (nyaya) He metes out to us rather due to His grace (kripa). Shree Kripaluji Maharaj states this beautifully in his hymn, Dayamaya! daya chaya nahi nyaya "O Merciful One! I seek your grace not justice." We come to understand that if God were to truly mete out justice based on our endless past karmas, we would not have this human form and all the material comforts and success we enjoy. We have all this because He looked beyond our past and desires that we move closer to Him. As our sense of gratitude and tolerance increases, our relationships become a joy instead of a burden, which in turn leads to greater humility. And, as we are well aware, humility is the basis for devotion.
Thus, the effect of devotion is very noticeable in our daily life. Most of all, there is greater harmony in our relationships to the extent the mind is purified and the divine qualities manifest.

Featured Video

Three important points of devotion
We read in the above two articles that as our devotion grows so does the extent to which the divine qualities manifest in our behavior. In this video, Swamiji specifically explains the qualities of humility, forgiveness, tolerance, and to always respect others but not seek it for oneself. 
 Click here to watch this enchanting clip by Swami Mukundananda. 

News & Updates




Labor Day Weekend Retreat in TX with Swamiji
The 2017 Labor Day Spiritual Retreat with Swami Mukundananda was an amazing blissful experience for everyone. The event kicked off with prayer and arati followed by bhajans and Swamiji's lecture on the Bhagavad Gita. The theme of the lecture series was Chapter 4 of the Bhagavad Gita. While adults were immersed in spiritual bliss from the kirtans and lectures, children and teenagers were getting enriched with Vedic wisdom in the Bal-Mukund and Youth programs that were held simultaneously. Devotees practiced Roopdhyan meditation each day under the guidance of Swamiji.
The most auspicious occasion of Radhastami, the appearance day of Radha Rani, was celebrated grandly in the Radha Krishna Temple. Devotees from in and out of state participated in this wonderful event that included kirtans glorifying Radha Rani, devotees dancing for the pleasure of Barsanewari, cake cutting, cultural performances, and more.  Click here for photos 
Lecture Programs
Chicago hosted a very successful week long program on Seven Mindsets for Success in Life and Beyond. Swamiji's engaging lectures drew a crowd of nearly 200 people everyday! The crowd was excited to learn from him about the approach to problem solving and adopting a positive attitude to overcome life's challenges. As they understood, staying motivated and disciplined was the key.  Click here for photos. 
Immediately after the TX retreat, Swamiji headed over to CT for the lecture series on the topic, "Seven Mindsets for Success in Life and Beyond".

Prasad Srinivasan, four time State Representative, was the Chief Guest on the first day of the program. He warmly welcomed Swamiji back to the state. "Our community owes so much to what we learn from you," he said. He admired how fluidly Swamiji speaks on a range of topics like Shri Krishna Bhakti & Mind Management, and swiftly moves from one to another. He praised Swamiji's consistent efforts to spread divine wisdom and said that the community was looking forward to seeking Swamiji's blessings in all the years to come.  Click here for photos.

The honorable Mayor of Newington, Roy Zartarian also known as Mayor Z, was the Chief Guest on Day 2 of JKYog's Program in Newington. He warmly welcomed Swamiji to his city and said, "Swamiji. You Sir, you are a rock star! And on behalf of the town of Newington, I want to formally welcome you and thank you for adding immeasurably to our town's cultural and spiritual diversity by your presence here this weekend."
Swamiji is revisiting all the centers and conducting house satsangs in the last leg of his US tour.  He visited FL, NY, NJ, PA, MD, Houston, Chicago. Devotees feel blessed to have Swamiji's darshan and hear him reinforce the devotional message before he leaves for India.  Click here for photos. 

Oct 17th   
Arrrival in Delhi   
Oct 18th to 27th       
Oct 29th to Nov 4th      
Banra, Odisha
Nov 6th
Arrival in Vrindavan 
For more details, click here
Nov 9th to 10th
Nov 12th      
Arrival in Odisha
Nov 14th to 20th  
Jajpur, Odisha  
Nov 21st & 22nd
 Baripada, Odisha 
JKYog Presents
Personality Development Classes for Children
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Children attending Bal-Mukund sessions at the Labour Day Retreat in Texas had a blast. They learned a sloka and bhajan in the short time at the retreat. They also learned about Respect and made a Respect pledge that they took back home as a souvenir! They also learned about Janmashtami, why it is celebrated and how it is celebrated in different parts of the world. The icing on the cake was when they presented to Swamiji all that they learned and also got to ask him questions and get them clarified. The children also made a lovely card for Swamiji! They were excited to make new friends and enjoyed being  part of this beautiful program at the retreat. 

Wellness for Life
Health Benefits of Bananas

Bananas are one of the most popular and widely consumed fruit all over the world because of its rich potential health benefits. It is rich in potassium and best value fruit around. It is the number one fruit with leading athletes because it gives an instant, robust and substantive boost of energy.
Banana is rich in carbohydrate and packed with natural sugar like sucrose, fructose and glucose. Unlike common myth, banana helps in weight loss, the insoluble fiber in it helps in smooth bowel movement, aids helpful nutrients that keeps the heart healthy and the vitamins keeps the eyes healthy.  Two bananas can give sustained energy for a rigorous one hour workout. Besides being a number one energy booster it saves us from a number of illness. That is why it is recommended as must have in our daily diet.
Banana is known to uplift depressed mood. It contains tryptophan, a protein that the body converts into serotonin which relaxes tensed nerves, uplifts mood and makes one feel happy.
PMS (Pre-menstrual syndrome)
Banana is a must have for women during PMS. The B6 in banana regulates blood glucose level which eases PMS symptoms.
The high iron content in banana increases the hemoglobin in the blood. It is a must have for anemic people.
Blood Pressure
Banana is also known to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke because it is rich in potassium and low in salt.
Brain Power
Banana is known to enhance brain power. The potassium packed fruit assist learning by making students alert.
Click here to read the entire article.

Bhog Recipe

  • 2 glasses of milk approx less then a litre 
  • 5 -6 tablespoons flour
  • Sugar syrup
For Syrup:

  • 1 glass water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Pinch of Saffron and Cardamom
  • Crushed Pistachios and Almonds
Method for syrup:
  • Boil water with sugar till one string (chasni)
  • Garnish with Saffron, Pistachios, Almonds and Cardamom 


  • Boil milk till it is half. 
  • Cool and add flour. 
  • Pour mixture with a spoon in hot ghee and fry on medium heat. 
  • When golden put in syrup.
  • Serve warm
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