We have had a solid group of devotees here in the UK and Ireland for a few years now, and have held regular in-person meditations every so often, and a yearly retreat.
Enter lockdown, and things have changed! I attended the online community training online with Kirtani, Shivani and Darshan in July 2020, and from that, started our online community and Ananda UK FB page.
I’m sure you won’t be surprised to know that this has become like a magnet, and has drawn in a really deep and sincere group, and seen our numbers increase.
We started with a regular weekly Sunday meditation group online, which has been running since July 2020, and this has been a really solid base for us to grow from. We have experienced meditation leaders here including Stan, Leon and Surya, and also myself and Sananda who both lived as part of the Assisi community for many years and bring that experience also.
As the energy has become ever-more magnetic, we recently added two more weekly online early morning meditations which are as popular as our Sunday evening. It’s a real joy to come together so often to meditate, chant and inspire each other. As Master states ‘Environment is stronger than willpower’ and we really feel that! There is nothing like group sadhana to raise our vibration and unite us. From that place, we are able to be channels for this sacred work of Master and Swami, and take their vision forwards.
We also started a WhatsApp group which is very lively, and a great way to connect, share the teachings, get to know each other better, and really feel like family here. We are meditating and serving together, and it’s really powerful. And we have new musicians popping up who are learning the chants too – what a joy!
We have started to meet in person again every couple of months too. We have devotees country-wide though, so not all can make it, which is why we see the absolute beauty and joy of the online communities that we are all creating all over Europe! Jai Guru!
It’s exciting times, and we have an in-person weekend retreat coming up in April. It was originally planned two years ago as a ‘silent’ retreat, and of course, that’s out the window now! Along with the opportunity for deeper meditations, it’s going to be alive with chat about community, getting to know each other for those that are new to the group, and plotting and planning for the future.
I can feel Master at work here in the UK and my heart is singing! I came back to England in 2014 from Assisi, and am so delighted to have an Ananda family growing here. That family is getting stronger, and the vision for a centre/community is really pulsing! We don’t know what shape that will take yet, and are taking it steadily, step by step, in full faith that it will unfold perfectly. We have the Gurus on our side, how could it not?! And great support from our group, and from Ananda Assisi, and worldwide.
Surya is working on our website and it’s looking good in draft form. We have four members supporting on our FB page, and Leon, Nalini, Stan, Sananda and Surya leading meditations and upcoming events. Plus a lovely group of meditators alongside. Our next step is to become legal and open our bank account. We have magnetised some financial support and have enough in the pot at present for our next steps which is great! We are magnetising more funding for our future, and beginning to learn about fundraising as we go, though I’m sure we will attract someone skilled to take that on for us (any offers, please email us!) firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
And really great news – we will hold our first Kriya Initiation in the UK in October with Darshan and Uma coming over to be with us for that – Jai Guru!
I’m so delighted to be able to serve Master in this way, and to be part of what is happening here. I was never quite sure why I came back to England for two months, and ended up staying, now I get it! Also Surya came back from abroad for a temporary period and stayed. We have a mixed and lively team, and none of us are here by chance… Master at work? For sure!
We have the Divine opportunity to be able to build something as a beacon of light and hope to show that there is another way to live, to give people somewhere they can come to dive deep, or simply for some quiet, healing time, to be able to share the teachings with others so that their lives too can transform. What a blessing to be part of Master’s vision, and part of his family.
I have so much gratitude to Master, Swami, and for my Ananda family in Italy, moving there was the best move of my life! Thank you.
With love and blessings