Last Day of Japa Club

By Matrikaa (Marlene) Gast

Japa Club comes to a close on June 21, International Day of Yoga.  When I heard the news, I felt scared and sad.  What will I do without Zooming into Gurudevi’s voice repeating mantra, and matching mine to it? 

This great gift has been given to us for more than a year.  Plagued by pandemic panic, many of us have relied on Japa Club as a desperately needed link to Gurudevi.  Japa with Gurudevi has been a steady place of sacred shelter.  And Japa Club has been a tangible conduit of Gurudevi’s blessings to the world.

I realize that I’d hoped Japa Club would go on forever.  Yet, besides feeling loss, I’m settling into inner “is-ness.”  How appropriate that we emerge from our yoga caves now that it’s safe.

Gurudevi Nirmalananda says, “It’s been a great honor and privilege to serve so many for so long.”  She initiated Japa Club within a couple of weeks of pandemic lockdown.  Since then, Gurudevi has led the traditional 108 repetitions of mantra in Zoom sessions twice daily.  Her Japa Club sessions have served the world at large and each of us individually.

In creating the Japa Club, Gurudevi’s goal was supporting us in getting over our pandemic panic.  She says, “Through Japa Club, I accomplished that goal —and more.  More people are abiding in the Self.”  Regular participants in Japa Club describe powerful experiences:

The Japa Club made a huge difference for me.  Gurudevi has said that the function of the Guru is to pierce through the veil of fear to the Self.  It is working of course!!” — Robin B.

During the Japa Club call, mantra reached down into the depths of my being and my form.  The mantra revealed itself, and I knew it to be the worship done by every human in every fire ceremony, yoga practice, synagogue, mosque, church and so on that has ever been.  I saw the priests and holy humans bowing to God.  A profound moment of Self.  Eternally grateful to the One who is giving so much.” — Lori K.

It has been a difficult year in so many ways.  Of course, we’ve been needy.  Recognizing our plight, Guru gave us Japa Club as a lifeline.  In truth, she is always here for us seekers, closer than the breath.  All we need do is turn our attention to her.  Plus, no longer locked down in our homes, we are free to travel.  We can sit at our Guru’s feet in person.  We can bask in her light, bathe in Guru’s Grace, and imbibe her teachings.

Now we can let go of the Japa Club lifeline.  Being infused with Guru’s Grace, we go forward with the self-effort of Disciple’s Grace.  We can diligently apply Gurudevi’s guidance to Do More Japa on our own in our own homes.  With mantra repetition 24/7, you are no longer using Gurudevi as a crutch.  Prevent understandable neediness from morphing into greediness!

Effective tools are available for practical support.  Set your smart phone timer for multiple japa pauses daily.  You get a structured rest and reset by sitting to repeat mantra out loud.  Be sure to follow it with silent repetition inside for a minute or so.

And rely on Gurudevi’s Meditation: Deep & Easy CD.  In the 2nd track she leads you in 108 repetitions of mantra.  Set that track to repeat for as long as you want.  Notice how your state deepens with the longer, frequent japa sessions structured for yourself.

As verse 9 of the Guru Gita says, Guru and Self are not distinct.  Being Self-Realized, Gurudevi is always there for us.  She is, by definition, within.  By repeating mantra 24/7 we come to know this truth, without a doubt.  The past is done.  The future is your choice.  You can walk on your own, run — and even fly. 

Gurudevi says, “Five minutes of japa twice a day will make you feel better, but it won’t get you enlightened.”  So heed her guidance: Do More Japa.

10 thoughts on “Last Day of Japa Club

  1. gurupremananda

    Thank you Gurudevi for your great love and support! And thanks to all of you for being at the other end of the line in this sacred practice when we all needed it the most. I have set my phone for 6 japa breaks per day. You will all be with me with every inner repetition! Love Gurupremananda

  2. lajjaellenmitchell

    I am so Grateful to have had the Japa Club to call into. I thank you, Gurudevi, for being there and grounding me especially at the beginning of the pandemic. Japa does make a difference.
    Om Namah Shivaaya
    Om Namah Shivaaya
    Om Namah Shivaaya

  3. hislopl

    Thank you Gurudevi for your steady and loving guidance! You threw us all a lifeline that I will forever be grateful for. I always knew that Japa Club would end some day. Today I came to the last one feeling no different than when I attended the previous ones, yet when I heard your voice I started to cry! Namaste Kevalaa

  4. Kelly McKee

    Thank you, Gurudevi, for the gift and blessing of Japa Club. I now find myself repeating mantra more naturally and seamlessly throughout the day. And I was so moved to have participated in offering the benefits of mantra repetition to all those affected by the pandemic throughout the world.

  5. svaroopa2016

    Gratitude abounds for the daily link between the Ashram, our kula and home; and the opportunity to deepen inside in spite of a chaotic external world. As Gurudevi has said before regarding gratitude, “That cultivating of the gratitude is an active process that opens your heart, deflates your ego and puts you in an entirely different space within yourself.” OM Namah Shivaaya. With eternal gratitude, Bhadra

  6. Sumati

    Thank you dear Gurudevi for the Japa Club during these many months. It has been so wonderful to be in your presence twice a day every day during Japa Club and to repeat mantra for myself and for the world. As well, I have deeply felt and basked in your caring, love and generosity in offering the Japa Club to so many. Thank you also to those who filled in for you.
    I plan to continue out-loud japa at 11:30 and 6:30. These practices are so much a part of my day.
    Om namah Shivaaya Sumati

  7. lorikenney

    Japa Club has been such a steadying force in my day. Thank you Gurudevi for teaching us this essential practice. We have no excuse now! It was such a beautiful closing today. I loved hearing everyone’s voice and their reverential bowing to Self. Such a beautiful collage of Grace flowing through many rivers to the ocean of Self.

  8. Stuart Aion

    I found the Japa Club to be a most wonderful addition to my daily life. It was in no way a crutch but instead, wind beneath my wings. It was a lovely offering and most appreciated; it will be missed! Having everyone together on a zoom call was inspirational
    Power in numbers! ;’)

    Blessings to the world! 🙏🏽

  9. Manini - Monique Martin

    Thank you Gurudevi for this very generous and uplifting gift received over the last 15 months. The quotes and mantra repetition helped us to remain focus on what is important in life. It also was a very special time spent with you and my kula. Your continuous support is heartwarming. The power of this maha mantra what amazing grace.
    Om Namah Shivaya

  10. Nirooshitha Sethuram

    Thank you Gurudevi Ji for leading & guiding us into our “Self” through Japa Club. All your teachings even before the pandemic prepared us to face the pandemic. Japa Club was the gentle string in the right direction in the midst of all. Thank You! Om Namah Shivaaya!


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