BLESSED SOLTICE EVERYONE!
Further reviews of the pre-blog newsletters are being given this week - firstly to save my over-taxed brain and secondly, because they give a good picture of life on a city ashram.
ANL 20 - 14th Oct 2012 - after the first year anniversary of the course, the increase in study levels began to tell upon us...
Things are getting ‘hotter’ in the study market. Don’t think anyone thought that was possible, but I suspect we’ve only seen the thin end yet. The Q&A review sessions moved to weekly and today there was a hint that these could become twice weekly – much of this process will cover texts already forgotten – and for that very reason I s’pose!
We now also have to prepare daily in case of being called to talk on any verse from Katha Upanishad. There is ridiculous amount of memory work involved which is understandable for the young’uns, but we over 50s are grateful for Acarya-ji’s understanding that this is a bit beyond most of us.
Have decided that Dory really is a good nickname for me – it is a fine acronym for the fright/flight sensations that come over one when the name is called; Duck, Oscillate, Run, Yell! – then it becomes Do Oration Right Yamini…
There has been a sense of the tree being shaken a little bit – and indeed two more fellows have departed in the past month, as well as another having his status altered from student to part-time employee of TCT, being allowed to continue in the vedanta classes only. Now that arrangements are getting finalised for our transfer to Vibhooti (2nd Nov. to 21st Nov – slight change but this is set in stone now), there are a few grumblings; it was announced that room sharing will be there (all are now used to having their own private ‘cells’) and packing will be significant as it is three weeks and all lessons will continue, therefore libraries required also… titiksha, (forbearance) people!
Ashram was crawling with folk today. Bala Vihar had their annual Gita Chanting competition, every kid turned out to the frill and the parents shrill. Then Swami Iswarananda-ji arrived from the US with half the population of that country accompanying him – and luggage enough for the entire populace of India!! Thankfully only here for a day then off goodness knows where.
This follows a comical interlude two days ago when we had Japanese tourists staying for a day – classic Nipponese style of tour; “all sight of different ashram with many photo opportunity”. Hilarious. Two of the men came in to morning vedanta and filmed Acarya-ji mid sanskrit, then departed half a dozen sentences later… it felt a bit like we were creatures in a zoo!
One more snapshot before I go – the ladies who help out with hospitality were caught on candid camera yesterday morning; there are many workers here, but these ladies I have the most ‘truck’ with, particularly Pushpa (at back) whom I find to be warm and sisterly. Middle is Vidya, a bit ‘ruff’n’ready’ but big hearted and in front is Asha, the real motherly type. It was coming up to lunchtime and they were clearly having a wee ‘smoko’ before eating. They are good workers, so who can blame them?