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Spiritual Retreat : Yelagiri, January 2023

On the auspicious Vasanta Panchami of Saraswati Puja Day, 26th January 2023, an on-request Antaryogam (Spiritual Retreat) was begun that continued till noon of 28th January 2023. This three-day Retreat was held at Ramakrishna Math Yelagiri Hills in conjunction with Ramakrishna Math, Kaundanpalayam, Coimbatore. Swami Bhaktikamananda, the Adhyaksha of Ramakrishna Math, Coimbatore reached Yelagiri with 12 devotees. This Retreat was joined by 2 devotees from Chennai, two from Katpadi, one from Sivagangai.

The first day session started at 4 pm. The programme included Vedic Chanting, Nama sankirtanam, Sandhya Arati, Bhajans and two talks by Swami Vimokshananda. He explained with five points why attending an Antaryogam by the devotees became essential to progress in spiritual life. In the second talk that was given before the dinner prasad, he outlined the noble purpose of Sri Ramakrishna’s Avatar for the good of humanity.

The second day programme of Antaryogam began with the Mangala Arati at 6 am and ended at 8:30 pm with dinner prasad. Here the programme consisted of Japam and Meditation, Readings, Chanting of Vedic Mantras as well as Stutis like Sri Lalita Sahasranamam and two talks by Swami Vimokshananda – one at 11 am and the other at 7:30 pm. He spoke on the Holy Mother’s Divine aspect in the morning Talk and Swamiji’s Four Yogas in the evening Talk. An hour long bhajan and chanting by Swami Bhaktikamamda was an added attraction.

The third day of the Antaryogam began as usual with Mangala Arati, chanting of Vedic Mantras, Suprabhatams and Mangalasasanam. Gita 12th Chapter was sung in chorus on all the days. The 45 minutes of bhajans by Swami Bhaktikamananda was followed by a Talk on Swamiji by Swami Samahitananda, Adhyaksha of Ramakrishna Math, Natrampalli centre. He outlined the new Path that Swamiji found for the modern era. Swami Atmayajnananda of Natrampalli centre sang a few bhajans. Swami Prabhupremananda of Madurai centre who has come to have a Self-Retreat was on the Tabla on all the days.

The Antaryogam came to a close with a Vote of Thanks given by Swami Bhaktikamananda who appreciated the love and warmth of the residents of the Yelagiri Math inclusive of Br. Samarasachaitanya. Br. Vijaykumar did the offerings and special Aratis. With the closing song of “Ramakrishna sharanam…” and prayers of “Kayena Vacha…” the devotees witnessed the Noon Arati. Lunch prasad was served thereafter.