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Acharya Srimat Swami Pranavanandaji Maharaj (Picture to your right) was an incarnation of Lord Shiva. He lived in the first half of the Twentieth century. Acharya Deva was born in the year 1896 in what is now Bangladesh and strove to realise in the Order he founded (His Sangha), an organization which would bring new energy, life and pride to the Hindu masses and the world. He was only 44 when he attained Maha Samadhi on January 8th, 1941. He left his imprint on India in various ways. From his very childhood he would always remain immersed in meditation and self contemplation.

In some ways he stands most authentically for Hindu values which can easily be overlooked by modern commentators, scholars and interpreters of religion. Perhaps he was one of the figures whom we ought to take seriously in estimating the power and value of the modern Hindu renaissance, stretching from recent history to contemporary times when a variety of new religious leaders have made their impact on both the Indian and Western scene. His type of spirituality is very different in certain ways from that of other Gurus and saints whose lives have come to the attention of the English public.

From his early days the young Binode - as the Acharya was then called - was drawn to spiritual pursuits and a kind of ascetic athleticism. The Kali Yuga is not a fortunate time to be alive, even if it contains great and holy figures who can arrest human decline by recalling humanity to the holy dharma or teaching. In previous ages, life was more blessed and spacious. This is a common theme of Indian thought and is shared with other cultures. Not for them the easy assumption of human progress, rather that life and virtue are decaying, sliding downwards.

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Life begins with birth and along with it comes various challenges, good, bad and ugly, joy, sorrow, sickness, calamities, sufferings, old age and death. Everything ends at death only to be reborn according to our Karma (the reaction of our actions).
The main purpose of this God blessed life is to free ourselves from the cycle of rebirth and live a life of perpetual bliss and joy in the divine realm by performing “Seva”. To be free from rebirth, we need to inculcate universal Hindu values of loving, caring and sharing with a heart full of compassion. Develop an intense yearning and plead with God to have mercy and free you from the cycle of rebirth. Also do “Seva” or selfless service to all living things, help relieve pain and sufferings, illness, distress, sorrow and hunger. Do charity and service to humanity, love all, serve all. Educate and liberate yourself from the cycle of rebirth and eliminate bad Karma by doing good.

Life today is a constant battle between passion/feelings/desire and reasoning- intelligence. It means we are fighting a battle between our heart (desires), consciousness (passion) and our mind (thoughts). The Heart (desires) greed, lust, anger, jealousy, hate, vengeance, revenge, feelings of rancour, gossip, etc.

The Mind (reasoning intelligence) encompasses spirituality, compassion, moderation, detachment, humble, patience. The way forward is by being detached from everything except God, be attached to God only. With God all things are possible when we are with God we begin to experience a sense of security and well-being. This will help us to eliminate bad karma, maya and ego.

May your efforts be fruitfull by the divine Grace of God.
God bless.
Bharat Sevashram Sangha-Canada
December 2016.