Ananda Family News

Monday, May 24, 2010

Music with David Eby

David Eby, music director for Ananda, came down from the Village last weekend to give a couple of workshops on "The Sacred Art of Singing," and "Music, Inspiration, and Consciousness." He also played cello and led the choir at Sunday Service, and Ron got us a video of it. Enjoy!

Musical Selections 5/23/2010 from Ananda Palo Alto on Vimeo.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Happy Birthday, Swamiji!

May 19th was Swami Kriyananda's 84th birthday. Our celebration on Wednesday evening began with — what else? — a group meditation. Following that, we got to bask in Swamiji's music, both performed by our choir, and on recordings of Swami himself singing. The music alternated with Asha reading to us a number of delightful, moving, and inspiring stories from her book, Swami Kriyananda As We Have Known Him. We also watched a short video, from the series of Bhagavad Gita commentaries Swami is doing for Indian television. (You know you can follow along with these on the Ananda YouTube page, right?) All in all, it was a beautiful evening of appreciating what a blessing we have in Swamiji's teaching, friendship, and leadership.

If you visit the "A Place Called Ananda" blog, you can also find recordings of the music from the Ananda Village birthday celebration, and a page full of birthday wishes (which you can add to, if you like).

Happy birthday, Swamiji!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Garden Party for the Garden

On Sunday after service, we had a High Tea Garden Party on the central lawn at the community. Some 70 or so people attended, ate delicious food, got serenaded by our lovely singers, and raised money for the community gardens.

A small army of volunteer cooks and bakers prepared a glorious repast. The lunch table included row upon row of quiches (in mushroom and leek varieties),  as well as deviled eggs, cucumber sandwiches, nutballs, salad, crackers with blue cheese and raspberry jam, muffins, and maple scones with lemon curd. The dessert table was at least as huge and covered in tastiness that included brownies, chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter cookies, cardamom cookies, lemon cookies, raspberry muffins, chocolate covered strawberries, and six varieties of shortbread. Wow!

As we ate, different groups of singers occasionally popped up around the tables to entertain us. David P. talked about his recent trip to Italy to see Swamiji, and Amara told us about the community gardens. Did you know that the garden area behind Master's Kitchen used to be a driveway? And the orchard used to be a volleyball court. And now they're full of fruit and veggies!

In the end, we raised over $2,500 for the garden. That money will be used to replace old redwood planter boxes, upgrade the drip watering system, enhance the soil in the orchard for growing vegetables, and purchase seeds. Thank you, everyone who contributed!

We ended the party with everyone singing "Many Hands Make a Miracle," because they certainly did, with such a beautiful event going so joyfully. And for an encore, the entire crowd of miracle workers tackled the cleanup, causing Asha to remark on how very astral Ananda events always seem to be -- they spring up, practically from nothing, make a lot of people happy, and then just vanish again into the ether.

You can see more photos of the day here. And just for an extra little dose of adorableness, here's a shot of Grace helping make the shortbread cookies on Saturday.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A May Day Wedding

On Saturday, May 1, Doug and Kristy of the Boulder Creek community were married in the Palo Alto temple. We have some lovely photos of the event here and here, from Jeffrey and Rambhakta, respectively.

I wasn't at the wedding, myself. Were you? Leave a comment and tell us about it!

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