I Am Eternally Grateful

…says SHARMILA KUMBLE in this time’s YUVASPEAK as she describes how her energy, her enthusiasm and her techno-savvy skills accelerated under the umbrella of Pujya Swamiji’s Grace

I was lucky to grow up living very close to the Bengaluru Math which is always bustling with activities. As a child, going to Bal Vihar classes which later became Prarthana classes, was the most exciting part of every Saturday. The fun-filled activities in Prarthana classes were backed with small learnings that have enriched me. Getting blessed by Parama Pujya Swamiji for chanting the Dhyana Shloka of Bhagavad Gita motivated me to get over stage fright and helped to gain more confidence. As a senior Prarthana student the Vimarsh sessions taught me to express myself more clearly.

The most exciting part of finishing 10th standard was being able to go to Karaseva Shivir and getting inducted as a Yuva. Karaseva Shivir, a week packed with activities at Kembre, sessions by Sanchalak-s, practice sessions with talented Yuva-s and many more brought fresh energy and enthusiasm in me. The highlight of the Shivir was getting Mantra diksha from Parama Pujya Swamiji. The Mantra-japa has given me immense strength when facing difficult situations.

Participating with motivated youngsters in various Yuvadhara activities like Vimarsh, trekking, Anand Mela, cultural programmes, mobile workshop for elders, shrama -seva, carpentry workshop at Srivalli School, sammelan-s and shivir-s reminded me repeatedly, to enjoy the rasata of life. I was blessed to join the CYO team where I got to interact with Yuva-s from various sabha-s. I found role models in the coordinators and CYO team who have guided me patiently. The bonds formed with these amazing Yuva-s are extremely precious, for they have provided a safe space for me to make mistakes and learn.

Our community has always provided a nurturing environment for us Yuva-s. This was evident when I was elected to be a part of the Bengaluru Local Sabha committee. Looking at other sadhaka-s in seva handle various responsibilities and situations has helped me to develop communication skills and leadership qualities. These have guided me during difficult times at work and empowered me to handle sticky situations more professionally.

Yuvadhara has provided me a platform to learn and develop qualities that were otherwise hidden in me. During the pandemic, when most activities were online, I got the opportunity to be a part of the technical backend team for online programmes. The team was always open to suggestions and experimentation. This openness to ideas gave me scope to learn new things and improve. Handling live streaming of online programmes like Sadhana Panchakam, Guru Pujana, Atmabal sessions was nerve- wracking but also rewarding. The most treasured memory, always, is to be able to see Parama Pujya Swamiji online during the live streaming of Samparka.  

I am extremely thankful to Parama Pujya Swamiji for their compassion. They have provided various tried and tested techniques like ninaad, pranayam, Wim-Hoff, rebounder and now, the Swiss ball, giving equal importance to both physical and mental health. Even a little practice of these tools has helped me to improve in my sadhana.

Growing up as an introvert , I sometimes  felt as if I would not fit in anywhere, but the ever -so- compassionate Gurushakti was there all along reminding me that I belong. I am eternally grateful to our Guru and Guruparampara !