After the sacred Guru Pooja, a Nada Yoga Course (English/French) was conducted by Swami Paramatma and Swami Yogajyoti, of France, at Rikhiapeeth from 2nd to 9th August 2010. This uplifting course combined traditional nada yoga practices with satsang and swadhyaya to attain a healthy body, peace of mind and awakening of higher potential.
After hosting the very successful tour of Swami Satsangi to Brittany, France, just months earlier, these two very experienced Satyananda Yoga teachers were inundated with inspired French aspirants wanting to visit Rikhiapeeth, of which Swami Satyasangananda had spoken so passionately during her recent tour.
A feature of the course was the enlightening satsang with Swami Satyasangananda, who addressed questions on many aspects of spiritual life and yogic practices and lifestyle. Her profound insight into the ancient practices enabled her to impart their practical applications and benefits in today's modern world in all areas of life from mundane to the esoteric.
Swami Satyananda had said, "Bhakti yoga is the path and God is the destination. I am a traveler and you too are a traveler" Radha Krishna Jhoolan at Rikhiapeeth is a festival of bhakti started by Swami Satyananda to bring us closer to our ultimate destination. The event conducted in 2010 from 20th to 24th August was such a huge success that it brought us all not only one step closer, but a giant leap closer to him - our ultimate destination!
This joyous festival of bhakti conducted annually at Rikhiapeeth since 1998 for the spiritual upliftment of us all is a way to experience the bliss and joy of Sri Krishna's divine presence. This year was extra special as Swami Satyananda is now one with Krishna, and therefore the blessings of both guru and Lord Krishna showered upon all those fortunate to attend. The celebration was blessed by the presence of Swami Niranjanananda and Peethadhishwari, Swami Satyasangananda, who gave so much of their time, love and inspiration to one and all.
Each day between 5.00 and 8.00pm, the beautifully decorated Yajnashala was overflowing as people came together from around the world and across India to worship Sri Krishna with havan, naam sankirtan, prayers and arati. The capacity of the sadhana hall seemed to expand, enabling thousands to receive the darshan of Sri Krishna, Radha and Bal Gopal.
The kanyas and batuks of Rikhia excelled once again by conducting all aspects of this event. Their enthusiasm, ceaseless smiles and confidence was a true tribute to the sankalpa of Swami Satyananda that is being fulfilled at Rikhiapeeth to work towards the upliftment of those who are the most neglected of our society.
Throughout the five day event, Vrindavan was recreated at Rikhiapeeth. As the Gopis, the kanyas sang, danced, prayed and worshipped Krishna with so much love, devotion and remembrance that the presence of both Sri Swamiji and Lord Krishna was felt throughout the entire festival. Modern dances performed by the kanyas depicting the love of Radha and Krishna were especially loved by all as the love between Krishna and Radha was no ordinary love, it was pure and divine.
Sri Swamiji had said that in the Kali Yuga, singing the name is the quickest, easiest, simplest way to realize God. The vibrant repertoire of kirtans sung by the kanyas was testimony to this truth and the energy of Sri Krishna was manifest. Even Swami Niranjanananda and Swami Satyasangananda were immersed in joy and devotion as they danced and danced and danced.
Daily mass scale bhoj was part of the worship of Sri Krishna, and all his favourite sweets were freshly prepared and served in abundance. Bhoj was conducted for the kanyas and batuks along with the old age pensioners, gramins and villagers of Rikhia panchayat and the delicious food was a fitting offering to Lord Krishna.
During Sri Radha Krishna Jhoolan all guests and devotees had the opportunity to participate in seva, which was one of the central teachings of Swami Satyananda. Seva is the basis of the daily routine at Rikhiapeeth and is the most important yoga as it translates our everyday mundane actions into a means to reach the highest goal - self-realization. The various activities of seva yoga were guided and directed by Swami Niranjanananda and Swami Satyasangananda.
Another central teaching of Swami Satyananda that featured during this event was `giving'. The kanyas and batuks, numbering over 1,600, all received generous prasad of a stunning new outfit and a bucket overflowing with items, including oil, underwear, notebooks, stationery and various other necessities.
On 24th August diksha into karma sannyasa, jignasu and mantra was given to hundreds of initiates by Swami Niranjanananda and Swami Satyasangananda at the Samadhi Sthal of Swami Satyananda during the chanting of Sundarkand of Ramacharitamanas, receiving innumerable blessings for their spiritual journey.
Wherever there is music, song, dance and delicious food, Krishna can be found! Sri Radha Krishna Jhoolan at Rikhiapeeth was no exception and the grace, blessings and presence of Lord Krishna were felt throughout the event and beyond! This manifestation of grace was made possible due to the powerful spiritual vibrations that Swami Satyananda generated and installed here at Rikhiapeeth as his legacy to us all.