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2018 Christmas Message From Brother Chidananda

“Christmas is a thought of spiritual grandeur—a realization that our minds are an altar of Christ, the Universal Intelligence in all creation.”

—Paramahansa Yogananda

Loving Christmas greetings to you, and to all of Paramahansa Yogananda’s spiritual family and friends around the world. During this sacred season, may the universal Christ Consciousness, born in Jesus and in all God-united souls, unfold within your own devotion-prepared consciousness. Spiritual Christmas is more than just an outer celebration; it is a time of hope and new beginnings, when light and joy flow tangibly from the heavenly realms into receptive hearts. It brings a wonderful sense of opportunity—a renewed zeal and enthusiasm to attune ourselves with the Divine, to vitalize the stirrings of large-hearted goodness, helpfulness, and outreaching generosity that are the angelic heralds of the nascent Christ within us. May that true Christmas spirit rekindle in all humanity not just hope for peace on earth but an active consciousness of goodwill to all.

The blessed Lord Jesus, and all the Great Ones, incarnated on earth not to hold before us an unreachable goal but to awaken us to our soul’s limitless potential—to show us that latent within us is the Christ Consciousness (Kutastha Chaitanya) that sustains the universe. Let this be a time to discover its indwelling power and light as a gift of God’s grace. Expand the horizons of your opening mind and heart by dwelling on the Christ universality exemplified by Jesus. He saw the Divine in all, regardless of religious or social boundaries. In his compassion he reached out even to those who had erred and forgave those who were his enemies. There was no room for enmity in his heart, which encompassed all of God’s children. And you too can expand the circle of your caring— creating day by day a heaven of peace, harmony, and understanding within and without. Begin this Christmas. Let it be a special time to reach out to others—not with material gifts alone, but with the gifts of a magnanimous heart: gifts of your time and attention, gifts of forgiveness and understanding. As our Guru said, “Whenever you do something for someone else, without any selfish motive, you have stepped into the sphere of Christ Consciousness.”

Deepest motivation to expand our consciousness beyond our own needs and wants comes from the natural overflowing of a heart filled with God’s infinite love. The Christ-love that permeated the life of Jesus came from that inexhaustible Source. That is why Paramahansaji urged us to take time to meditate longer and deeper in this holy season. In the sacred silence of the wall-less temple within your soul, God will come to you as joy, peace, and boundless love; and with the touch of His all-inclusive consciousness, you will feel the barriers of separation dissolve, revealing your eternal bond with Him and with other souls. Each soul even slightly illumined by that inner awakening automatically contributes to a more harmonious world. Receive in our Guru’s own words his loving blessing: “May you have a very merry Christmas, and may you receive the greatest gift that anyone can wish for you—the perception of the Christ spirit in your own heart. May you feel his presence on Christmas Day and every day throughout the new year. Open your heart to receive the wonderful gift of Light.”

A joyous Christmas to you and all of your loved ones,
Brother Chidananda

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