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Ashram Mission Statement
We aspire to live the Teachings of Haidakhan Baba, to share the Love of Babaji
and the Divine Mother with others, to hold this Ashram as Their Home,
to serve humanity, and to be stewards and caretakers of the land.
Dear Friends of the Ashram,
By the time you receive this newsletter, I will be in India visiting both of Shri Babaji's main ashrams located in Haidakhan and Chilianaula. When I look at this photo taken in summer of 1982 as we were hiking out of Haidakhan, I am deeply moved by the blessing of walking, talking, and being touched by this Divine Manifestation in this way. As I retrace these steps on my yearly trips to India, I am always powerfully reminded of Babaji's love and availability to all of us at all times.
As we move toward the holidays, I include this quote taken from two of Babaji's speeches at Christmas time of 1982 which we published in our Crestone newspaper to convey the great reverence Babaji had for Lord Christ and this time of year.
"I congratulate and bless all who have assembled here from so many countries at this auspicious time. Today is a most happy and sacred day. Here, at Haidakhan, people belonging to many religions and faiths have assembled to celebrate with great religiosity, the birthday of Lord Christ.... The seeds of righteousness have been sown in your hearts for you to kindle the hearts of others. I seek the general good of all people in the world. You must all do work to save humanity."
Everyone at the Ashram sends their love and appreciation to each of you and their wishes for a blessed and peaceful season. Please remember us as well in your prayers. If you would like to make a donation or sponsor a fire in someone's name for the holidays, we would be happy to send one of Shri Babaji's signature Om Namah Shivaya cards to them acknowledging your gift. The Maha Lakshmi Shop is open each day from 9am-5pm and full of wonderful gifts from India. We invite you to visit or shop over the phone or on line. Your support makes such a huge difference.
Evening aarati at the temple is at 6pm and morning aarati is at 7am. Lunch is served around 12:30 and we love you to visit. The full-moon fire ceremony is on Friday, December 12. The new-moon fire ceremony is on Saturday, December 27. All fire ceremonies begin at 10:08am and are followed by a meal. If you would like to participate by sponsoring a fire, we would like to send you a blessed item from the ceremony. They are:
- $27 sponsorship - Copper, brass, nickel Om Namah Shivaya bracelet
$54 sponsorship - Rose Quartz, Rosewood, Sandalwood, or Tulsi Mala
$108 sponsorship - Rudraksha or Crystal Mala
You can make the donation online by just clicking here or call 719-256-4108 or e-mail the Ashram at info@BabajiAshram.org or send us a check at P.O. Box 9, Crestone, CO 81131. We are continually grateful for all of your support.
In truth and love, Ramloti
Over the last few months, the Ashram has been working on a new website to facilitate greater ease in navigating it and purchasing items from the Maha Lakshmi Shop. Last month, when we sent out our newsletter, there were still a few gliches in links and we heard from some of you that you were not able to make purchases and donations. We apologize and invite you to try it again. It is still www.BabajiAshram.org. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. There are several new devotee stories on the site. If you would like to share yours, you can send it to Annelou at Annalou22@fairpoint.net or call her at 719-256-5051. We certainly appreciate all her work collecting these inspiring stories.
Bhajans in Delhi, India - Sat, Dec. 6
Our good friend, Arvind Suman and family, moved back to India last Spring after several years of living in Denver. Arvind sat on our Board of Directors and organized many fundraisers and bhajan evenings in Denver. He and his wife have also been responsible for bringing many new friends tothe Ashram over the years. Their presence has been missed.
At our last Board meeting, we were talking about how much he had done for the Ashram. The very next morning he called from India and asked if we could do a bhajan night at his new home in New Delhi. So it is all organized and Prakash (who will be making his first trip to India) and Ramloti will lead the chanting.
Bal Gokulam - Saturday, December 20
Despite the busyness of the holidays, the parents all wanted to have another children's program in December. Our next Bal Gokulam will therefore be on Saturday, December 20, from 10am until noon followed by a potluck lunch. This program we will learn about and honor Radhe and Krishna.
The program includes stories, yoga, chanting, coloring, sharing, and puja. The program has become very popular among the community. We have many children and parents that look forward to coming every time and there are always new participants as well.
Please call Cindy 719-256-5007 or Shila at 719-256-4477 for more information.
New Year's Day Group Meditation
The Crestone Spiritual Alliance is organizing a New Year's Day group meditation at 2pm. This will be held at the Crestone Healing Arts Center and all are invited. The Spiritual Alliance is a group of 22 spiritual organizations that was formed to have a united voice on issues concerning them. We thought that coming together to begin the new year in mediation was a great way to add to the many prayers for a peaceful and harmonious New Year.
Ceremonies in Florida - Jan. 17 & 18
The American Haidakhan Samaj and the Ashram will travel to Florida for a semi-annual get-together on January 17 and 18th. Premanand and Ramloti will be representing the Ashram.
On Saturday evening at 7:30pm we will lead an evening of chanting and slides at the Transformational Studies Institute. The address is 108 Intracoastal Point Drive, Jupiter, Florida 33447. It is always a joyful event and often ends with lots of dancing. For more information please call 561-744-9123.
The next day we will gather at Harmony House at 9am for a sacred fire ceremony, aarati, chanting, satsang, and a potluck. The address for this event is 102 Avocado Road, Delray Beach, Florida 33444. This is where local devotees meet monthly for the sacred fire and aarati. The back yard, were the fire is held, is lush and inviting. The love and hospitality we experience when we go there touches the heart. It will be wonderful to meet with everyone again. If you are in the area, please try to attend. There will be people traveling from all over the US for the weekend. For more information please call Richard at 561-371-0067 or Elaine at 561-277-8326.
Kirtan Hall Update
Our kirtan hall is magnificent and it has all been built by your donations and support. Several people have organized fundraisers for the kirtan hall over the last few years and we are always so grateful. We are looking to do more of these and invite you to consider organizing one with a group of friends. They are always very inspirational as well as a lot of fun. Please call the Ashram with any ideas you may have at 719-256-4108.
In the past, there have been many great events including: chanting evenings; fire ceremonies; dinners; yoga workshops; rummage sales; and auctions. These all made a big difference in the amount we were able to pay down the loan.
We are pleased to let you know that through your donations, matching pledges, monthly tithes, and all of your shop purchases, our kirtan hall loan now has been paid down to $29,000.
We would like to encourage you to make a monthly automatic pledge to pay down the kirtan hall loan. Either call the Ashram at 719-256-4108 with your credit card number and ask us to charge a set amount every month ($501, $108, $54, $27, $10.08....) or go to our website and ask PayPal to deduct a certain amount from your account each month, Click Here. You can also send a check to the Ashram at P.O. Box 9, Crestone, CO 81131 or donate online by clicking here. We want to thank you for all of your continued support in this meaningful project.
Coming this Spring:
Kirtan Hall Online Auction!
Lakshmi is blessing the Ashram with many recent fundraising ideas. The Board of Directors is actively brainstorming ways to pay off the Kirtan Hall and will implement some exciting activities in 2009. Among them will be our first Online Auction and all of our supporters will have the opportunity to donate goods and services and everyone will be invited to bid on a large variety of items. We are using a nonprofit auctioning program called cMarket: bidding for good www.cmarket.com. They have hosted more than 5,000 online auctions for a large variety of organizations and their average auction earns $11,000. They provide the auctioning website and bidding management system, a consignment shop of donated items to add to our catalog, and exposure to more than 100,000 registered bidders on BiddingForGood.com. We are registered for one year and can hold as many auctions as we choose during that period.
So be on the lookout for more details by January when we will begin to build our first online auction catalog! You will have the opportunity to donate your items online or purchase an online sponsorship spot. The first actual bidding period will be held for 10 days in March before the start of Navratri but the catalog will be open for browsing shortly after the New Year. If you have questions or others ideas to support our fundraising, please email Cindy at email@example.com.
Jai Maha Lakshmi Mata Ki Jai! Haidakhandeswari Mata Ki Jai!
Protect This Sacred Land
This land where the Ashram is located is very precious, pristine, and fragile. As you may already know, Lexam is attempting to drill on the Baca National Wildlife Refuge for oil and gas exploration. There is great concern on how that would effect our water, wildlife, and other natural resources. On Oct. 22nd, the USFWS released the Final Environmental Assessment of Planned Gas and Oil Exploration, Baca National Wildlife Refug. Sadly, they concluded that Lexam’s drilling proposal would have “less than significant impacts” on the Refuge and surrounding communities. We’re now in the next phase of the campaign. In the coming days, the San Luis Valley Water Protection Coalition (WPC) will step up its efforts to get a full Environmental Impact Study and purchase of the Baca mineral rights.
On Saturday, the 15th of November we enjoyed our monthly children's program, Bal Gokulam. We celebrated the Goddess Durga and heard two very inspiring stories about Her. Both the parents and the children expressed how much they appreciate us getting together like this.
One mother shared that her daughter keeps asking her when the next children's program is going to be. The parents say the learn a lot from listening to the stories.
We also enjoyed doing yoga together. Here are some photos of that part of the program, taken by Kailou. This is always one of the favorite parts of the morning.
Durga was beautiful after the puja we performed with a profuse amount of flowers adorning Her. Sage, who will be two-years-old in February, offered the aarati lamp to everyone as we sang the aarati after the puja.
Following the program, we all sat outside on the lawn enjoying the delightful November sunshine, each other, and a beautiful potluck.
Visitors and Families
With the nice warm weather, November has continued to be busy with many visitors, families, and groups at the Ashram. Some come for an overnight visit, some for longer visits, and some for lunch, darshan, and shopping. We enjoy seeing them all.
On the full-moon day in November, we had our annual visit from the students of Verde Valley School located in Sedona, Arizona. We always look forward to their visits. They arrived before morning aarati and stayed throughout the day. They were a great help throughout the Ashram. This group pictured is taking inventory in the Maha Lakshmi Shop.
They also participated in the full-moon fire ceremony and all the preparations for the feast that was served afterwards. Their help with the cooking and all of the clean up after the event were really appreciated. A few Nepalese families were also at the Ashram that day and orchestrated the main part of the meal. It was definitely a savory affair.
Meanwhile our local families continue to drop in at the Ashram. We love to see our children grow. Here Angela is shown with Matias and Talus looking around the shop. Sage is showing her mom, Claire, a bag of kale. And we are happy that Jen and Danush with their beautiful son, Guthrie, have returned after spending the summer in Moab, Utah.
Calendar for 2008
December 6 - Chanting evening in Delhi, India. Call 91-99999-87159 for information.
December 12 - Full-moon fire ceremony at 10:08am followed by a meal.
December 20 - Bal Gokulam, children's program from 10am until noon, followed by potluck.
December 27 - New-moon fire ceremony at 10:08am followed by a meal.
Calendar for 2009
January 1 - Group meditation with the Crestone Spiritual Alliance at 2pm at the Crestone Healing Arts Center.
January 17 - An evening of Chanting and Slides in Jupiter, Flordia. Call 561-744-9123 for information.
January 18 - Fire Ceremony, Aarati, Satsang, and Potluck in Delrey Beach, Flordia. Call Richard at 561-371-0067 or Elaine at 561-277-8326 for more information.
February 14 - Shri Babaji's Mahasamadhi. Paduka Puja at 5:45pm and aarati at 6pm.
February 23 - Maha Shivaratri with all-night chanting and fire ceremony the following morning at 10:08am followed by a feast.
March 26 - April 3 - Spring Navratri, the Divine Mother Festival.
July 7 - Guru Purnima Day with Paduka Puja at 9:30am, fire ceremony at 10:08am, followed by feast.
July 19 - 25 - Annual Family Week and Concurrent Workshop at the Ashram.
September 18 - 26 Fall Navratri, the Divine Mother Festival.
October 17, 2009 - Diwali, Festival of Lights. Fire ceremony at 10am. Chanting at 7pm.
Maha Lakshmi Shop Report
We are happy to let you know that we have just received the 2009 Babaji calendar from Italy. They are $15. We actually only have a few left, so order them soon. They are not on our website, so give us a call at 719-256-4108 and give us a credit card number (Mastercard, Visa, or Discover).
We also have some beautiful Prayer and Meditation Calendars. We have just put them on sale from $13.95 to $9. If you want to view the whole calendar go to http://www.light-of-consciousness.org/prayermeditationcalendar/PMC_HomePage.asp. You will have to call the Shop directly for this special too.
Thank you to all of you that have remembered the Maha Lakshmi Shop for your holiday giving. We have so many reasonably-priced gifts. Here are a few:
The first photo shows a 4 inch Ganesh for $9 and a 2 inch Ganesh for $5. There is also an engraved brass om which comes in three sizes. We have 5 inch for $10, 6 inch for $12, and 8 inch for $18. The next photo is a 8 inch silver/brass statue of Ganesh with Bells which sells for $99. It is also available in brass. The third photo shows wrist malas for $9, a black Om purse for $14 (also available in purple and maroon), incense burners for $5, light cotton Indian blouses (in many colors) for $15 and T-shirts for $12. Finally, we have lots of CD's in the Shop, like this one by Pujari. We also have many cassettes which are on sale for $6. All of the above items are on our website.
We would also like to send you a free packet of Babaji Signature greeting cards with each purchase as our gift to you
You can call us on our toll-free number at 866-686-4185 to order or for more information. We love to talk to you. We are happy to send the gift directly to the recipient with a gift card. You can also view our brand new web site at BabajiAshram.org and order on line through pay pal or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We thank you for all of your shop purchases as the revenue from the shop is a huge support for the Ashram. We are open daily from 9am until 5pm. We take Mastercard, Discover, and Visa.