The 23rd of February, 2009, the auspicious day of Maha Shivaratri (the great night of Lord Shiva) was a scene of great spiritual events at our Hariharananda Gurukulam. Several initiations into the path of brahmacharya and sannnyasa were conducted at the Gurukulum under the direction of Paramahamsa Prajnananandaji. The two-day event was a grand and colorful ceremony, following all the prescribed rites of the Giri order.
Ten of our brahmachari trainees and four brahmacharini trainees who completed at least one of the Residential Brahmachari Training Courses and have been serving in our different ashrams were initiated into brahmacharya, with new names ending with ananda (meaning bliss) and were given yellow clothes following the Giri tradition. The yellow color indicates the light of knowledge. A brahmachari follows the path of knowledge in pursuit of God-realization. The following are the old and new names of the Brahmacharis (Br.) and Brahmacharinis (Brn.) with the meaning of the new names:
Four of our resident brahmacharis serving the ashrams in teaching and non-teaching capacities for the last few years and Yogacharya Anita Ma, a long time disciple of Gurudev, were ordained into monkhood of the Giri order donning ochre clothes. The ochre or saffron color indicates a life of renunciation and sacrifice. The following are the old and new names of the monks and the meaning of their new names:
For the first time initiations into vanaprastha were conducted at the Gurukulam. In Vedic tradition there are four stages in one's life — brahmacharya (student life), grihasta (married life and taking care of the family and children), vanaprastha (pre-monastic life spent in pursuit of spirituality and service to society), and sannyasa (monastic life of renunciation in quest of Self-realization and helping humanity).
We pray to God and masters to bless all our new initiates in successfully achieving their goals and in their selfless service to further Gurudev Paramahamsa Hariharananda's mission of spreading the divine path of Kriya Yoga worldwide.