Asha’s visit to the UK was long-awaited, with much joy and also curiosity. Many of our group have followed Asha for a long time, and the thought of meeting her live was both exciting and slightly scary! (In a good way of course!
Having followed her tour around Europe, we were ready and waiting when she and Dambara finally came through the arrivals at Gatwick airport – to a welcome of Carl, Nalini and Stan chanting ‘Om Guru’ complete with guitar and cymbals! What a great welcome for a great duo!
Without further ado, we whipped them off to their hotel where Satya and Krishnaji were ready to welcome them with flowers, a Beatles book for Dambara, and of course….. a cup or two (or even three), of English tea.
We had a lovely meal with 12 of us in the hotel that evening and got to know a little bit, this legend who had come to visit, and the musician who has been on a lot of our play lists over the years.
Our main event was on Sunday with around 27 people in attendance, some new to us, others old friends. Dambara ignited our inspiration with Swami’s songs, and his rendition of chants, and captivated our hearts; what a joy to hear him sing and play. Asha of course talked and shared with deep love, knowledge and wisdom on the subject ‘Hope for a Better World’.
Monday saw us at the Royal Horticultural Society at Wisley on a day out. It was great fun just to hang out together, have lunch outside (well wrapped up), followed by a cream tea – naturally! A really poignant moment was when we were all leaning over a circular well surrounded by plants, and Dambara started singing the ‘Woodland Devas’ – just magical.
That evening we had more music, meditation, and joyfully, our members who were there all took the Pilgrim Vow which was a beautiful and uplifting moment, and a confirmation of the commitment and depth of our Gurubais here.
Tuesday – Satya and her husband Iain took Asha, Dambara and some of us on a tour of London which was a huge success! The pictures of the Abbey Road album cover (Ananda version), was truly taken on that very zebra crossing! We loved the fact that both Asha and Dambara were so much fun and easy to be around, they were up for anything. Of course, Joy is Within You is Ananda’s promise, and we saw it clearly both in them, and in ourselves. To be together doing every day things, as well as the events, was such a huge blessing.
Wednesday, a morning’s satsang with Asha which was just so deeply inspiring, with lots of music too from Dambara. Lunch together one last time, and we had to say our farewells, leaving them at the hotel to have a little bit of quiet time before the airport for their journey home.
Thank you with all our hearts to both Asha and Dambara, it was pure joy to have you here! You uplifted our consciousness, and also gave great practical suggestions for our daily lives. Thank you too for making time for one to ones with us, so deeply appreciated.
Here are a few comments from some of us to reflect the energy of their visit:
“Asha’s visit was a great blessing. The effect she had on our group, and seeing how brings out so much joy in others is a beautiful experience. For me, I have only to remember the occasion to feel the bliss of her presence”
“Since I found Ananda online in 2020, I haven’t met anyone from Ananda. So, the two days I spent of being in the presence of Asha and Dambara was a deep blessing, tearful and heartfelt experience for me. They both brought home to me their service and love of the teachings of Ananda, Swami and Yogananda. I feel so blessed and honoured to have bee able to be in their presence and make memories with them”
There were so many comments, they cannot be included here, but I think it’s clear to all that the visit was an absolute joy and inspiration, and all we want to know is ….when are you coming back?!
Thank you to all of you who helped with the visit – ‘Many hands make a miracle’.
And lastly, it is clear to us that the more we can be together as a group, the better, and this is what grows our magnetism here. Thank You Master.