Experiencing God Within—A Talk Given by Brother Anandamoy, SRF Monastic

[quoting Paramahansa Yogananda from "Autobiography of a Yogi"] "To surmount Maya was the task ***igned to the human race by the millennial prophets." He doesn't say Hindu prophets, or Jewish prophets, or whatever. It is by the millennial prophets, they all have taught the same thing. To rise above the duality of creation and perceive the unity of the Creator was conceived of as man's highest goal.

Self-Realization Fellowship is…not a new sect, it is not a new religion. So what is it?

Paramahansa Yogananda was the last in a line of God-realized Masters whose mission it was to bring back the esoteric teaching which is underlying all the great religions. And that teaching, that esoteric teaching was lost in the dark ages…

(talks about the ascending and descending yugas and that we are at present in the beginning of the ascending bronze age)

Mankind per se is still very much in the dark age. In regard to understanding what life is all about, in regard to behavior, at***udes, that sort of thing. But the advantage of the new age is, they brought back the knowledge of the finer forces in the universe--energy, electricity, atomic energy, that sort of thing.

Control of the energy, this is the scientific key to—we call it yoga—but it is really the scientific key of the esoteric teachings that underlies all the great religions. The external aspects of religion, there you find big differences, obvious, because they have been sent in different times, they have been sent to different people...And then also, these various religions are deeply rooted in the history of certain people, the history of the great saints and masters, prophets of the various religions, so therefore you cannot possibly bring them all together in an external way, no way. (talks about the 400+ religions at the parliament of world religions).

A professor came from a university from India to interview [Master] in Los Angeles…and he asked him, "You claim there is an underlying unity of all religions. How come there is quarreling, even war, certainly conflict between the different religions. And the Master said, you read the same thing even in the ancient scriptures of India. There is always worshiping Shiva, that is to them the supreme God. And others who say, no, it is Vishnu and his incarnations of Rama and Krishna, he is supreme. Then he said, I often have heard him say, that if you could bring together, in the same room, all the great saints, the great masters, the great prophets of the various religions, there will be perfect harmony.

And you bring their followers together and they are at each others' throat. And he says, why? Because the great ones, they have the full vision, full experience of God. And the others, who do not have that experience, they go by dogma, and there of course are differences. And so we have to understand the key to religion is experience, not just belief…