Ananda Family News

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Celebrate Ananda

Every year around this time we like to stop, give thanks, and just plain old celebrate the fact that we get to be a part of such a life- and world-changing movement as Ananda. This year, we held the festivities in the church courtyard, since one of the many things worth celebrating is the amazing transformation that area has undergone this year. Isn't it lovely? (More photos here. Update: and even more photos here.)

David addressing the gathering in our beautiful Italian piazza.

After some hors d'oeuvres and socializing time, David started off the program with the "Cliff's Notes" version of the Palo Alto colony's history, with hints at all the other fascinating stories that could be told about it. (Someone should get inspired to do a bunch of interviews with folks and collect all these stories, no?) We also got to hear from several Ananda members: Saranya, Karen, and Gary each spent a few minutes sharing personally meaningful and entertaining stories about some of their Ananda experiences.

Dinnertime at the buffet line.

And of course, what would a celebration be without good food and music, right? The main course was a tasty sandwich bar sort of buffet, which paved the way for a glorious array of desserts. And throughout the meal we had different groups of musicians and singers taking turns strolling around and serenading us. (Did you know Swami Kriyananda wrote a song in fake Hawaiian? He just has no end of surprises!)

The new color scheme is gorgeous at night, too.

Asha wrapped up the evening for us with some observations on what it's like to be a part of manifesting something like Ananda. One of our collective strengths that she conveyed particularly well was the way in which we are able to look at what other people might call "nothing" and just see an energy flow there that will eventually become a community, or a church, or a school. Time after time we've tackled apparently ridiculous situations, made it work out, and had a delightful time doing it.

So here's to the next 20-something years! Jai us!

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