I remember wondering back in 1986, when we first acquired the land for the Ashram, if visitors would ever find their way to Crestone, such a remote place, a four-hour drive from Denver. Well, that is no longer a question as we have thousands of people coming to the Ashram every year. This is a wonderful thing and we are grateful that so many people wish to have the darshan of Shri Babaji and the Divine Mother.
Since one of Babaji’s main teachings is love and service to humanity, we do our best to greet each person that arrives and answer questions about Babaji, the Ashram, the temple, the rituals, and see if there is anything they need. We also invite them for food if it is around mealtime and help them in the Maha Lakshmi Shop. It takes a lot of energy to constantly be there for people, basically from 6am until 8pm seven days a week. On some weekends we have over 300 people come through the Ashram. We feel it is one of our main duties and we enjoy getting to know so many of you, we often make connections that last for a lifetime. We are never surprised to see the same folks year after year making their pilgrimage to the Ashram.
It used to be that in winter we would have very few people come to the Ashram, it was a quiet time. We took this time to catch up with life and have a little extra meditation and rest. The last couple of years, however, this has not been the case, unless it is snowing, we seem to have visitors.
So we have decided to carve out nearly two weeks of quiet time at the Ashram from January 11 until January 23 and actually close the Ashram to everything except the temple services. This means that we will celebrate the full-moon January 10, as usual with a fire ceremony at 10am followed by a feast and reopen with the new-moon fire ceremony at 10am on January 24 with the fire ceremony and a feast.
This is also the time of Makar Sankrant, January 14, when the Sun begins its northern ascent according to the Indian calendar and the spiritual energy is rising. It is an auspicious time for prayer, meditation, and other spiritual pursuits. Shri Babaji said that is a time when there are no negative influences on the earth. It feels like very good timing for quiet time at the Ashram.
What it will this look like? The same schedule will be followed of paduka puja at 5:45am followed by a small fire ceremony at 6:25am and aarati at 7am. However, after aarati people will not be invited down for chai or a meal and the Shop will be closed. The temple will remain open all day for quiet meditation and we will sing aarati in the evening from 6pm until 7pm. Once again, visitors will not be invited down to the earthship for tea or a meal afterwards, however.
This feels like a necessary step to take so that we can be revitalized to serve all of you that are so dear to our hearts. Thank you for your support and understanding in this matter.
In deep deep gratitude and love to you all,
Ceremonies and Schedule
The new-moon fire ceremony will be on Tuesday, November 26 and the next full-moon fire ceremony is on Wednesday, December 11. All fire ceremonies begin at 10am followed by a meal. Please arrive ten minutes early, freshly bathed, in a long skirt or pants with shoulders covered, and having fasted from grains, cereals, meat, eggs, garlic and onions. Fruit, yogurt, unsalted nuts, veggies and tea or coffee are fine to eat before. If you have a dietary need for something more hearty before our meal at 11:30 or so, please partake.
Our evening aarati is at 6pm, morning aarati at 7am, and the daily small fire ceremony is at 6:20am. We do not have the small fire ceremony when we have our large fire ceremony on new and full moons. The Maha Lakshmi Shop is open every day from 9am until 5pm. We love to see you.
If you would like to participate by sponsoring a fire ceremony or a bhandara (feast) we would be happy to send you a blessed item from the fire ceremony if you request. They are:
$27 sponsorship - Copper, brass, nickel Om Namah Shivaya bracelet
$54 sponsorship - Rudraksha, Rosewood, or Tulsi Mala
$108 sponsorship - Rose Quartz Mala or a copper, silver, brass Om Haidakhandi bracelet
(Click here to go to our donate link to sponsor a fire or bhandara.)
Ashram Holiday On Line Fundraiser Auction
Many people enjoyed our holiday on-line auction last year. It was a great opportunity to buy something for loved ones or yourself and know you are supporting the Ashram. We already have over 130 wonderful items this year. We have several hand-made malas, both wrist and 108 size with sacred beads from Shri Babaji's personal malas. We also have tulsi malas from Shri Babaji and wrist malas made from a rose quartz mala from the Divine Mother. JD Marston donated many new fine prints to the auction, and James O'Dea donated his wonderful signed books. We have lovely and fun jewelry, musical instruments, wall hangings, and art. Rita Beuralt is also painting a special mixed-media pie of Maha Lakshmi for the auction. We will post it when it is ready.
See all this and more at www.biddingforgood.com/babajiashram
The Next Long-Time Resident Hermitage Has the First Coat of Stucco!
The hermitage is getting the stucco on the outside since our weather here has stayed so mild. We are getting plumbing and electrical inspections so we can close up the interior walls. For this last phase of the construction Bill, who many of you have met in our kitchen, will be leading the crew, which consists of all karma yogis; Will, Anthony, and Jonathan. It is exciting as each step takes place and the hermitage comes closer to completion.
We can still use your support of this project. Please donate as you are able so that we can build the whole hermitage this year. Click here to go to our donate link You can pay with a credit card or paypal, or you can send a check to HUA at P.O. Box 9, Crestone, CO 81131. Thank you again.
Remember that Ashram YouTube Channel is Available to All: just click here
Lots of great videos of Devotee's Stories and we keep getting some inspiring remarks that I will share with you from time to time. just click here
That's a really beautiful story, thank you for sharing. It's a very high teaching you received – something with the potential to blow your mind and bring you into heaven quickly. This thing about time – Babaji the timekeeper receiving the jewels of time! The magician’s waistcoat in your favourite colours! The meeting of all moments into a single gesture, the hand offering a talisman – again. How this happens cannot be known, but that the past and future are extensions of the present is a fact. Like you, I tended to think things out, but gave up using the mind to analyze God. It is simply ecstasy in motion and love is the dynamo that drives this. And like you I stumbled before the teachings, picked myself up, started again. Oh Lord! The thing is, Babaji teachings are from another dimension. Translated into this dimension they are ‘His’ leela. Babaji bestowed divine knowledge, seemingly spontaneously, by the bushel load. Babaji was a divine dynamo of love in motion.
I heard a quote from Babaji that "you cannot dream about me, it is only i who can come to you in your dream". Interesting. In 1990 i visited Haidakhan ashram hoping to meet Babaji. Unfortunately he passed on in 1984. I stayed in the dormitory in the ashram, all on my own. Very first night i had a dream that Babaji floated into the dorm, took me by the hand and showed me around the ashram. I had never dreamed of him before that and have never dreamed of his since. So in essence, i guess he made sure i did 'meet' him and my journey wasnt in vain. True story.
Thank you Karku! I love this description so much. It is so brave a thing to try to put into words those deepest profound incidents that have torn the veil and changed us forever. The accuracy with which you recite this story, naturally a precious and energy-charged reminiscence, is both marvellous and illuminating. But also how hilarious! There is Baba trying to ameliorate a situation of entirely unnecessary panic (for Babaji, Prem Baba had not gone anywhere) this unholy disturbance invading the tranquility of the valley! And the monkey leela – gathering in the leaping mind! So priceless! Om namah Shivaya!
The Ashram Board of Directors
The Ashram is so grateful to have a great Board of Directors who are continually giving of their time and love in service here. The photo shows our last Board and Staff work session preparing for our Board meeting next week. It has been a while since we have acknowledged our Board, so we would like to let you know who they are.
Our Chair is Linda Joseph from Villa Grove
President is Ramloti from the Ashram
Vice President is Mark Rosen from Crestone
Treasurer is Ajay Pradhan from Denver
Secretary is William Howell from Crestone
Board members are:
Sastri Jayanti from Alamosa
Noah Baen from Crestone
Mindy Vanderford from Crestone
Jonathan Yates from the Ashram
Catrina Mianecki\Rosen from Crestone
We also have three liaison members from the Samaj. They are: Lok Nath from Tacoma, Peggy Thompson from Eugene, and Gayatri Devi from Crestone
Perhaps this winter I will have time to interview some of the newer members so that you can become more familiar with them and their work. The wide range of expertise and experience that they all bring to Board is so enriching and we are so grateful to have them all at the helm.
THE AMERICAN HAIDAKHAN SAMAJ
The American Haidakhan Samaj (AHS) is a service organization which was created at the request of Haidakhan Baba in 1983. The Samaj is a non-profit membership organization which provides education, publications, and support to the American Babaji community and maintains relationships with the Indian Samaj and international Babaji community.
Currently our projects are Love Our Earth, and we host quarterly Babaji Community meetings which are open to everyone. Love Our Earth is an environmental minded group who has several ongoing projects including tree planting and supporting the Wild Animal Sanctuary in the Denver area.
The Babaji Community Zoom meetings are designed to connect people who are interested in the Haidakhan spiritual path. The meetings are open to all for inspiration, spiritual support and to discuss ideas and projects. The next Community Zoom meeting is in January. We also get together annually at the Ashram every July or August. We hope you can join us.
For more information visit the Samaj website: www.babajisamaj.us
Our Facebook pages are Babaji American Samaj and Sri Haidakhan Babaji Center News.
To get in touch with us you may email firstname.lastname@example.org
Karma Yoga at the Ashram
The big projects this month is continuation of the building of the hermitage, these photos are shown above. We also repaired the septic tank for the hermitage site, put in a new french-drain for the pujari room, and deep cleaning has continued in all of the buildings. Going into the woods on the Ashram land and cutting up the fallen trees for fire wood has also been a large job. We are happy to say that we have plenty of wood now for the winter for heating the dorm and yurt and at the sacred fire pit, we probably have plenty of wood to use through Spring Navrati in 2020. Thank you to all who are helping with this as well as with the cooking, cleaning the temple, washing dishes, stocking the Shop, raking the water system, working in the greenhouse, serving food, orchestrating fire ceremonies and all the many delicious bhandaras.
We really could not get everything done without you. You are all one of the reasons this Ashram is what it is. Thank you deeply from our hearts.
We ask each of you to look into your hearts and see what this Ashram means to you and to please donate as you are able. You may donate by clicking here and scrolling down (you can even set up a monthly tithe). We deeply appreciate all of you that do tithe monthly to the Ashram. You can also send a check (made out to HUA) to P.O. Box 9, Crestone CO, 81131. We are so deeply grateful for your support, love, and prayers. Bhole Baba Ki Jai
Fall Navratri (Divine Mother Festival)
A resplendent time of love, devotion, beauty, and lots of people. We begin with photos of Mother from all of the nine days. During these special days we blessed all the temple instruments, had lots of pujas, fire ceremonies, discourses, chanting, honored the children, did puja to our Mother in the Mountain, fed lots of people (we ate on the lawn, it was so warm), and so much more. Here are only a few of the photos.
Diwali, the celebration of lights, was another special and memorable night with about 150 people in attendance. Mother was beyond resplendent, all lit up signifying the light that She manifests to all the world with Her amazing love.
We want to thank our families who came from all over Colorado to prepare a most amazing Indian feast for us all. Here are their photos.
It was a magical night of lights, sharing songs, lots of people, and enjoying amazing food.
The final share was from our special guest, Bon high lama, Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung Rinpoche, abbot of Triten Norbutse Monastery outside of Kathmandu, Nepal who was accompanied by Geshe Yungdrung Gyaltsen, other practioners, and organized by Elisabeth DesMarais. He led us in the Heart Chakra Prayer at the end, a perfect and powerful ending of a perfect night.
Here are some photos of the many people who have been here and some of their quotes. We are not able to show all the visitors, there is just not room in the newsletter. Folks really want and need the love they feel from the Divine Mother and Shri Babaji and we are grateful to be the ones that maintain their lovely home.
Here are a few quotes from recent visitors.
"Haidakhandi Ashram to me is a place of refuge, serenity, peace and total acceptance.
Though I have followed the Buddhist path for many years, I find in the ashram a sense of compassion, a feeling of total love that I have found in no other place. May it continue forever."
Paul and Michelle from Crestone, CO
"I found Haidakhandi Universal Ashram (HUA) some years ago. Since then I have been coming here a couple of times every year. Beautiful Mother's energy engulfs me with love and in Her presence I could feel the moment as the mind becomes clear. This experience brings me back here again and again. Babaji's karma yoga, daily puja and bhajans in the morning and evening, calm and serene environment, compassionate people with lots of space in heart, many spiritual traditions add to the experience. It also helps me to wake up early in the morning and go to bed early with the least distractions. Maybe one day I will relocate to Crestone." Mohan, Ft Collins, CO
"My two-week stay at the Haidakhandi Universal Ashram planted seeds of ancient wisdom within me that will continue to grow and bloom as time goes on. I enjoyed experiencing certain spiritual practices and celebrations for the first time such as Diwali, Aarti, & Pudka Puja which opened my eyes to the beauty of ritual and devotion dedicated to the divine. I enjoyed the profound practice of Karma Yoga and plan to carry this mindfulness to each area of my life. The devotion I was able to witness from the long term residents has inspired me to follow a more diligent spiritual practice and I’m so grateful for this experience! Om Namah Shivaya!" Melissa Ketchum, Minnesota
"Thank you, dear Ramloti, to you and everybody at The Ashram, for inviting our lamas and caring
for them so well. Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung Rinpoche, Geshe Yungdrung Gyaltsen, and Jeff, Dima and I, were moved by your Diwali celebration and by your warm hospitality."
Love, Elisabeth from Chamma Ling, Crestone, CO
Calendar of Events for 2019
New Moon Fire Ceremonies - November 26, December 25
Full Moon Fire Ceremonies - December 11
You can see the full calendar of events at our website.
Click here for the 2020 Calendar
Maha Lakshmi Shop Report
The Maha Lakshmi Shop has just received a lovely 2020 Calendar of Shri Babaji published in Italy. It is on our website and sells for $18. You can order it on line by clicking here.
We still have our 2020 calendar of our Divine Mother and you can purchase it on line by clicking here.
The Shop also just received a new shipment of many wonderful murtis and other wonderful items. You can purchase some of them on line at our website at https://mahalakshmishop.wazala.com
Many items, however, are too unique to put on one so you are always welcome to call and order at 719-256-4108. You can ask to have photos sent of our items, it is really nice to connect in this way. You may also email us at email@example.com. We are happy to bless an item at Baba's and Mother's feet for you or drop ship items to your loved ones around the country. We take Visa, MasterCard or Discover.
The winter hours for the Shop are from 9am until 4pm daily. It will be closed from January 11 through Januray 23 for our staff retreat. The Shop is a major supporter of the Ashram. We deeply appreciate your patronage.
Maha Lakshmi Mata Ki Jai!