Ananda CPR

CPR is a term that as a nurse I know to mean Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation, used as a life-saving emergency measure if someone’s heart stops beating. At Ananda we use those same initials as a reminder of what we need in order to keep our spiritual practices strong moment to moment over a lifetime: Constant Process of Re-inspiration.

We just had a beautiful weekend of CPR with meditations, classes, ceremonies, music, and other events to commemorate Swami Kriyananda’s birthday and to break ground for the shrine that will house his body. All of us participating in the program were lifted on waves of inspiration, remembering what grace and beauty this great soul brought to us and to the world.  The time spent was a wonderful reawakening of enthusiasm for the spiritual path.

Now that the weekend program is over, the job of translating what we felt in those transcendent moments into the day-to-day reality of our lives requires some creativity. Living our ideals was a specialty of Swamiji’s and a major aspect of life at Ananda that has kept me here for many years. Finding ways to spiritualize whatever we are doing is a great way to keep the life blood of inner aspirations flowing.

Sometimes this is an undercover pursuit because not all situations welcome an overt spiritual emphasis. Swami Kriyananda could convey uplifting, divine love by a significant glance to those who were paying attention.  Once, in a large city he saw walking past him an older woman hunched forward with an especially downcast energy. He stopped to compliment her  on the beauty of a scarf she was wearing. He didn’t know this woman but saw someone in need of love and wanted to share a touch of upliftment.  The kind remark was but a vehicle to carry a vibration of divine love in an acceptable but somewhat hidden way. The woman thanked him and carried on down the sidewalk now with more upright posture, clearly touched by this simple gesture.

My affirmation after this weekend is to follow Swamiji’s example by trying to infuse a vibration of peace, joy, and love into even small moments of the day by intentional choice of words, tone of voice, and expression of face and eyes. I recognize that I won’t always be successful, but each attempt will breathe life into the heartbeat of my desire to grow in higher consciousness and help in my quest for the Constant Process of Re-inspiration.

“May Thy love shine forever on the sanctuary of our devotion.  And may we be able to awaken Thy love in all hearts .” Paramhansa Yogananda

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