SRV Sangha News

paragatiAnd Mother Claps Her Hands…
SRV welcomes a new initiate in Portland. She has been bestowed by Babaji with the name Paragati, which means “Supreme Goal.”  She took initiation during our Holy Mother’s Birthday Celebration. Paragati is a therapist in private practice and also teaches group classes in mindfulness training. Her primary focus is working with archetypal pattern analysis and hakomi.
Since initiation she has experienced a deepening in her practice and meditation and feels closer to Mother and a grace that burns through karmas. She says that making such a commitment as initiation brings clarity of focus that calls us to a new level of being.





Art, Poetry & Vedanta
Prashanta Prakasha/ Benjamin Cavalcanti our dear sangha brother has recently published a book of poems and drawings entitled “Drawings, Questions, and Statements.” The book is a collection of drawings and philosophical writings created over a three-year span and gathered together during a period of profound transition in the artist’s life. Prakasha left the Portland Ashram after having lived there as a resident for several months and upon arriving in Oakland found himself swirling in a maelstrom of life changes and transitions, not the least of which was impending fatherhood.

The production of this book served as an anchor as Prakasha drew upon and integrated the inspiring, timeless Vedantic teachings he had absorbed along with years of personal artistic experiments and philosophical considerations. The text varies from poems influenced by the ecstatic tradition:

Let tears fall for
each moment the heart opens
and milk flows
Caring arms cradle
Tender eyes envelope

… haiku-like statements of deceptively simple understanding:

All roads lead to One
That is the beauty
It is all forever, at once

Good action
Good result
Bad action
Bad result
I hold the key

Interspersed are numerous charcoal and graphite drawings, ranging from calligraphic-like gestures suggesting fleeting moments unbound by matter to surreal landscapes that invite the viewer to enter worlds of infinite suggestion. Included are several hauntingly evocative portraits of Sri Ramakrishna and Holy Mother.

As is explained in the final pages:
The writings within this book are largely informed by Vedanta philosophy and the life of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa. Furthermore, in the Fall of 2008 Benjamin took initiation into the lineage of direct disciples of Sri Ramakrishna. This book was made to concisely and poetically reflect his spiritual interests and burgeoning experiences, which includes becoming a father. Ben’s desire is to fuse his passion for art making with his interest in spiritual realization.

“Drawings, Questions, and Statements” succeeds in that noble endeavor.

“Drawings, Questions, and Statements” by Benjamin Cavalcanti can be ordered on the internet at