APRIL 15, 2018 22 Baisakhi & New Year Special Spiritual Leader to demonstrate practice of Kriya Yoga Venkat Raman email@example.com Arenowned Spiritual Leader and a Master in the practice of Kriya Yoga will demonstrate this important posture in Auckland later this month. Paramahamsa Prajnanananda, Head of Kriya Yoga International will address enthusiasts at Blockhouse Bay Boat Club located at Endeavour Street, Blockhouse Bay in Auckland on Friday, April 27, 2018 from 7 pm to 830 pm. He will conduct Initiation and Technique Training on Saturday, April 28 and Sunday, April 29, 2018 at Shirdi Saibaba Sansthan located at 12 Princes Street in Onehunga. Those keen to attend the training programme should register their names through phone 021-335 137; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org; Website: www.kriya.org.nz; Facebook: KriyaYogaNZ He will also conduct a Non-Residential Retreat from Sunday, April 29 to Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at Shirdi Saibaba Sansthan located at 12 Princes Street in Onehunga. The daily Retreat will be held from 8 am to 5 pm. Organisers said that Initiation is essential to participate in the Non-Residential Retreat. They described Prajnanananda as “A God-realised Yogi in the unbroken lineage of Kriya Masters in India and in his pre-monastic life. “He was previously an academic, employed as Professor of Economics. His teachings are non-sectarian Paramahamsa Prajnanananda (From Facebook) and harmoniously blend the great teachings of the Orient and the Occident,” they said. About Kriya Yoga Yoga symbolises the union of the Individual Self with the Universal Self. Brought to the West by Paramahamsa Yogananda’s spiritual classic, “Autobiography of a Yogi,” Kriya Yoga is an ancient and scientific system of meditation to achieve this union. Regular practice of Kriya Yoga leads to improved health, peace and overall wellbeing. It also deepens one’s spiritual awareness and connection with all beings in the universe. Kriya Yoga has been described by its practitioners as the ancient Yoga system revived in modern times by Mahavatar Babaji through his disciple Lahiri Mahasaya (1861). According to Paramahamsa Yogananda, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, contain a description of Kriya Yoga – “Liberation can be attained by that pranayama which is accomplished by disjoining the course of inspiration and expiration.” The Yoga System The Kriya yoga system consists of a number of levels of Pranayama, Mantra and Mudra, based on the techniques intended to rapidly accelerate spiritual development and engender a profound state of tranquility and God-Communion. Yogananda attributes his description of Kriya Yoga to his lineage of gurus, Yukteswar Giri, Lahiri Mahasaya, and Mahavatar Babaji. The latter is reported to have introduced the concept as essentially identical to the Raja Yoga of Patanjali and the concept of Yoga as described in the Bhagavad Gita. Traditionally exclusive Kriya Yoga, as taught by Lahiri Mahasaya, is traditionally exclusively learned via the Guru-disciple relationship and the initiation consists of a secret ceremony. As Yogananda describes Kriya Yoga, “The Kriya Yogi mentally directs his life energy to revolve, upward and downward, around the six spinal centers (medullary, cervical, dorsal, lumbar, sacral, and coccygeal plexuses) which correspond to the twelve astral signs of the zodiac, the symbolic Cosmic Man. 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APRIL 15, 2018 Baisakhi & New Year Special Tamilians await prosperity in the New ‘Vilambi’ Year Venkat Raman email@example.com As you read this, Tamilians all over the world would have marked their New Year Day on April 14, although festivities in New Zealand and other countries will be held throughout the month to suit the convenience of the community. Special Prayers were held at all Temples and Gurdwaras around the country, since April 14 also marked Baisakhi (or ‘Vaisakhi’), the Harvest Festival of the Punjabi and Sikh communities and ‘Vishu,’ a traditional observance of Keralites. We have reports on Baisakhi elsewhere in this Special Report. Singhalese of Sri Lanka also observed their New Year on April 14. The same day is also celebrated by people of Assam, West Bengal, Manipur, Tripura, Bihar, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand. People from Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Karnataka observed their New Year Day as ‘Ugadi’ on March 18 this year. Importance for Tamils Tamil New Year is of immense significance for Tamilspeaking people of Tamil Nadu, Puducherry (formerly known as ‘Pondicherry’), Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, South Africa, East Africa, Indian countries – in fact, throughout the world. According to Vedic Astrology and Classic literature, there are 60 years which rotate, each corresponding to ‘Samvatsara,’ or Jovian Year (which related to Planet Jupiter). The Tamil New Year 2018-2019 is ‘Vilambi,’ the 32nd Samvatsara. Those subscribing to Astrology believe that those born in Year Vilambi will be prosperous and extend that prosperity to those around them. Known as ‘Puthandu’ or ‘Pudthuvarusham,’ the observance of Tamil New Year Day is set with the Solar Cycle of the Lunisolar Hindu Calendar as the first day of the Tamil Month of ‘Chithirai,’ known as ‘Chaitra’ in other languages. It therefore almost always falls on or about 14 April every year on the Gregorian calendar. Auspicious Day In traditional homes, children are woken up to see ‘Kanni,’ (which Malayalis call, ‘Vishu Kanni,’) that such sightings (of gold, jewellery, leaves, nuts, fruits, vegetables, flowers, raw rice and coconut) will bring prosperity throughout the year. Floors near entrances to homes are decorated with ‘Kolam’ (Rangoli) while the main doors will feature strings of Mango leaves. The real meaning behind these was to keep away, insects and toxic materials, now accepted by modern science. Early References There are several references in early Tamil literature to the April New Year. Nakkirar, Sangam period author of ‘Netunalvatai,’ wrote in the Third Century CE that the Sun travels from Mesha through 11 successive signs of the Zodiac. Kudalur Kizhaar of the same period also refers to Mesha Rasi as the commencement of the year in the Purananuru. ‘Tolkaapiyam,’ the oldest surviving Tamil grammar that divides the year into six seasons where Chittirai marks the start of the Ilavenil season or summer. ‘Silappatikaram’ (An Eighth Century literary masterpiece) mentions the 12 Rasis or Zodiac signs starting with Mesha. Chithirai Vizha New Zealander Tamilians will mark the New Year on various days at various locations, especially in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington and Christchurch. In Auckland, culture and tradition will combine with modern-day youth to promote an evening of entertainment on Saturday, April 21, 2018. Organised by Muthtamil Sangam, the event, called, ‘Chithirai Vizha,’ will be held at Freeman’s Bay Community Hall, 52 Hepburn Street, Freeman’s Bay from 530 pm. Sangam President Soundar Tirupathi said that the ‘Vizha’ (Festival) will bring together a cross-section of our communities. “As well as performances by our people, the forthcoming event will be glorified by multicultural performances by various ethnic groups. Entry tickets, priced at $10 for adults, $5 for children between five and twelve years (children below five will be admitted free) are now available,” he said. “The dawn of a New Year always brings with it new hopes for a new era, with people wishing for peace and 23 harmony, higher levels of growth and prosperity and greater community amity and social cohesion. Such hopes are more pronounced in a multicultural country like New Zealand where people join in the festivities of various cultural groups, expressing their joy and solidarity,” Mr Soundhar added. 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2018 Home Nations Sea Angling Boat Championships (Cobh) 14/15 & 16th June
Cobh, will this year host the 2018 Home Nations Sea Angling Boat Championships which will take place over three consecutive days from Thursday 14th through Saturday 16th June. Four teams will make up the
tournament which will see the cream of angling talent from Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales take to our local waters in a bid to take home the honours.