We are in the middle of a Kriyaban Retreat at “Mila Gioia.” This is Mila Ostrova’s country house, or “dacha,” outside of Moscow. Since many in the group here have visited Ananda Assisi, “Mila Gioia” is a word play on the Italian “Villa Gioia,” or “house of joy.”
And, it has certainly been a house of joy! As with people everywhere in the world who have a devotee’s heart, they are hungry for Master’s teachings, and love Master’s and Swami’s music. It’s a blessing to be here with all of them.
I’m including, below, a photo of the group in Ekaterinburg that didn’t get into the first letter.
And here is a photo of the Mila Gioia retreat group. (Yes, there is a great light above them!!!)
It has been quite cold here; as you can see from this photo, people are energizing outside in down jackets!
As we go for walks in this area, we see many of the same flowers and plants that we have in America: clover, wild strawberries just beginning to flower in this climate, lupin, vetch, and many others like these small yellow flowers. Russia, India, Sacramento…they really aren’t that far away from each other…
The food is very good: very fresh, and most of it comes right out of the garden. Even in restaurants you are served a plate of freshly picked herbs: chives, cilantro, fennel, etc. And often, green onions will be pulled from the garden right before a meal, cleaned, and brought to the table where people will break off pieces to eat. Salads are filled with herbs, cucumber and tomatoes. It reminds me of how Swami liked his salads: not just lettuce! But filled with fresh herbs.
We had a beautiful Discipleship Initiation this morning, and we will have a Kriya initiation tonight. Tomorrow morning is the end of this retreat, and tomorrow evening is the beginning of the weekend retreat. Then we begin the journey back to California.
Thank you for keeping us all in your prayers! May Master’s Light touch all hearts.
Love and blessings,
Aum, Nirmala and Dharmadas