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Lord Jagannath Through The Eyes of a Yogi

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Item Code: HAG067
Author: Paramahamsa Prajnanananda
Publisher: Prajnana Mission
Language: ROMANIZED SANSKRIT with English Translation
Edition: 2015
ISBN: 9783990000625
Pages: 292
Other Details 8.50 X 5.50 inch
Weight 400 gm
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Shipped to 153 countries
Shipped to 153 countries
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More than 1M+ customers worldwide
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100% Made in India
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23 years in business
Book Description
About the Author
Paramahamsa Prajnanananda is the current spiritual leader of the Kriya Yoga international organizations. These organizations were founded by his master, Paramahamsa Hariharananda, who spread the teachings of Kriya Yoga all over the world. Paramahamsa Hariharananda was Swami Shriyukteshwar and Paramahamsa Yogananda's most outstanding direct disciple, one of the greatest realized Kriya Yoga masters in the lineage of Mahavatar Babaji Maharaj and Lahiri Mahashaya.

Born in Odisha, Paramahamsa Prajnanananda was raised in a profound spiritual environment that inspired his search for Truth. He received his higher education in Cuttack and became a professor of economics there. In 1980, while still a student, he met Paramahamsa Hariharananda, who initiated him into Kriya Yoga, then fifteen years later, into the sacred path of sannyasa. After only three years, at the early age of 39, his master conferred upon him the highest title of Paramahamsa, a designation reserved for monks and saints who have attained the summit of realization.

Enriched by his own direct experience, fathomless wisdom, and deep love for humanity, Paramahamsa Prajnanananda guides and inspires spiritual seekers; a living example of how to fulfil one's infinite potential. In addition to running the main ashrams in Puri, Cuttack, Vienna, and Miami, Prajnananandaji spreads spiritual knowledge and the ancient science of Kriya Yoga by holding seminars and retreats all over the world. Prajnana Mission, founded by Paramahamsa Prajnanananda, provides service to humanity with free medical assistance units and centers, residential schools for the poor, and many other charitable and educational activities.

Author of many books on the science of yoga, practical guidelines to the application of the wisdom of Vedantic philosophy, and insightful metaphorical commentaries on the major holy scriptures and world religions, Paramahamsa Prajnanananda binds and bridges Eastern and Western cultures with a harmonious, fresh, and non-sectarian approach.

Time is a flow. It has been more than eighteen years since our beloved Gurudev received a letter from a spiritual organization in Puri in 1996 requesting him to write an article about Lord Jagannath. That was the Navakalevara year in Puri: the time for the renewal of the physical form of the most adored Lord. I read the letter to Gurudev, and he suggested that I, instead of him, should write an article in Odia for the occasion. Keeping his blessings and encouragement close to my heart, I began to write. Time and again, Gurudev would gently inquire about my progress. And I would read out loud to him what I wrote. He would continue to encourage me. With his encouragement, the size of the article kept growing. Eventually, he was quite delighted to see the complete manuscript. Since it was much longer in length than an article, Gurudev asked me to add a little more and suggested that we publish it as a book. He said it would be a useful reference for spiritual seekers, especially those who love Lord Jagannath and visit Puri.

This is the background story of this book. It was originally published in Odia in June 1996, during the grand celebration of Navakalevara. This occasion comes only during a year in which two full moons appear in the month of Ashadha (June-July). Since then, many editions of this book have been released in Odia. Now again, the Navakalevara will be celebrated in the Ashadha of 2015. As I work on the English translation of this book, the memory of my beloved Gurudev comes to my mind. I think of his arrival in Puri on the full moon day of June 1938, during the time of the Snana Yatra of the Lord. I dwell on Gurudev's deep love and devotion to the Lord, his regular visits to the temple, his sincere prayer to the Lord that his stay in Puri may intensify his sadhana, and so on and so forth.

I had the opportunity to accompany Gurudev on his visits to the Jagannath Temple for festivals on various occasions. My most treasured moments are when he would talk about the symbolic, metaphorical, and mystical aspects of the practices and the tradition that is followed in the temple of the Lord. I have seen how delighted Gurudev would be to receive the prasad of Lord Jagannath. Also, the tulsi (holy basil) leaves that came from the Lord would fill him with joy. Even during the last days of his physical existence, Gurudev was describing his visits to the temple of the Lord.

Time is passing. Everything changes with the passage of time. Even the Lord of the Universe has to change His physical form. But there is a timeless treasure kept concealed in a wooden form, at the navel of the deity to be more precise. In a ceremony that is marked by the strictest of privacy and mystery, this timeless treasure is literally transferred from the old to the new wooden form. Unfathomable is the supreme reality of the Lord; a touch of mysticism marks the practices and traditions in His temple.

This book was written more than eighteen years ago in Odia. Now, with the help of a loving disciple of our Gurudev, Professor Narottam Gaan, it has been translated into English. I have taken. the opportunity to rework some of the chapters. As I work on them, old memories, ideas, and writings make me smile.

Lord Jagannath thrills the heart of countless lovers of God. His form is unique. It is the formless form of the Divine. The rituals and other practices are without a parallel. The towering temple is about a thousand years old. The kshetra, the place of worship, predates the present temple. Both have attracted seekers of Truth from time immemorial. Many people believe that even Jesus came to Puri.

Situated on the east coast of India, Puri is one of the most ancient cities in the world. It is also known as Shri Kshetra, the abode of the Divine Mother Shri. Shri is another name for Mother Lakshmi, and she stands as a symbol of beauty, prosperity, and goodness. Puri has acquired fame not only in India, but also throughout the world as the abode of Lord Jagannath, the Lord of the Universe. It is one of the four most revered Hindu pilgrimage sites in India. The glory of Puri has been extolled in the scriptures since time immemorial.

Shri Kshetra, the holiest among holy places, is also known as Purushottama Kshetra. It derives its glory from the fact that Lord Shri Jagannath is worshiped here as the embodiment of the Brahman in a wooden form (darubrahma), Lord Jagannath's presence lends the city its fame. For eons saints, sages, and devotees have come to Puri from different parts of the world searching for liberation, searching for a more evolved form of life. They come for a glimpse of Lord Jagannath. Not only do they seek a darshan (sight) of the Lord, but also they make an offering of their firm devotion and love through meditation, prayers, and penance. Thus, the devotees achieve perfection in attaining God-realization, the ultimate emancipation. Each and every dust particle of Shri Kshetra is sanctified by the holy feet of innumerable sadhakas, saints, and sages: the place is imbued with their ever-radiating spiritual energy and vibration.

Many spiritual masters have made Puri their home, their sadhana kshetra. The monasteries and ashrams they lived in reverberate with their compassionate words and precepts, even long after they leave their physical bodies. The coconut and palm groves they roamed through are imbued with spiritual vibrations. To this day, the memory of these masters who lived in Puri fills the hearts of ordinary seekers with a spiritual warmth, hope, and joy.

There is a popular saying: "You may go on a pilgrimage many times to other holy places, but a visit to Puri enables one to attain the ultimate goal." People used to believe that visiting Puri, even only once, could bring perfection in God-realization to human life. Caring little for difficulties and hardships, devotees from many far-off places used to come to Puri. Pilgrimages are immensely beneficial. Without proper understanding of the purpose of pilgrimage, however, one cannot reap its fruits. Devotees go on a pilgrimage filled with a strong yearning for God-realization. At Puri, this yearning is gratified as they have a darshan of the Lord, offer Him their humble worship, pay respects to the sages and saints living in the town, and finally bathe in the sea, which is glorified in the scriptures as Mahodadhi, the great reservoir of water.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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