Monthly Archives: March 2020
Ashram and Mandir Closed Until Further Notice
In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the ashram and mandir will be closed to all guests at this time
At our Ashramite meeting yesterday, one of the ashram’s caretakers spoke about Maharaj-ji’s teaching of Sub Ek (All One) and how the Covid-19 pandemic is making clear our shared responsibility to one another and how interconnected we all are.
It is with this recognition of our shared responsibility to slow the spread of the virus that we are making the very difficult call to fully close the mandir and ashram to visitors at this time.
We were initially hoping we’d be able to leave the mandir open for brief darshan, but with the way the virus is spreading and the latest recommendations of scientists and experts, this is no longer in the best interest of our community and the public.
We know how much you all love the ashram and how important being able to have Maharaj-ji and Hanuman’s darshan here is, but we feel that it’s critical right now to support ‘social distancing’ and reduce places of contact where the virus can spread. This virus is impacting people around the world and Maharaj-ji’s ashrams in Kainchi and Vrindavan have also made the challenging call to close to visitors at this time.
It is our sincere hope that if we’re able to make selfless decisions and follow Maharaj-ji’s teachings to love everyone, serve everyone, and remember God, we will come through this pandemic quickly, more connected, and with less loss of life.
We don’t know how long this closure will last, but we will reevaluate in early April and will send an update by April 9th. We will continue to live stream the 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM MST aartis so you can have darshan at home. See a FAQ below for answers to some questions we’ve been getting.
Please visit our website at nkbashram.org to view the aarti live-streams or to support the ashram with an online donation. If you have any questions, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
With love and devotion,
Devotee and Sevak (in the role of General Manager)
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why are you making the decision to close the mandir and ashram fully?
The New Mexico governor has required that all mass gatherings be suspended and all non-essential businesses and gathering places close. We have been paying close attention to the situation and feel that fully closing the ashram and mandir and practicing social distancing is the right decision to help slow the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic and keep the satsang safe.
What is this decision based on?
We are following the guidance of the New Mexico and Taos governments, as well as the advice from scientists and public health experts. The more completely and quickly we implement social distancing (stopping non-essential person contact) will have a direct impact on how long the pandemic lasts and how many lives are lost. This Washington Post article is a helpful primer on the impact of social distancing and ‘flattening the curve’: https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/world/corona-simulator/
How long do you expect this to last?
We aren’t sure, but we will be following the situation closely and plan to have an update by April 9th on our website, over email, and on Facebook.
Will there be any public gathering for Hanuman Jayanti?
Unfortunately, there will be no public gathering for Hanuman Jayanti this year, our festival has been canceled and there will be no chanting or other gatherings at the ashram. Our lead pujari will do Hanuman Puja on Tuesday morning and will dress Him in his new clothes, but to protect public health the ashram will remain fully closed during this time.
I live in Taos and need support during this time, what can I do?
The ashram remains committed to Maharaj-ji’s teaching of Feed Everyone and we are continuing to find safe ways we can get food to those in need. We are exploring ways to collaborate with other faith groups in Taos, the men’s and women’s shelters here, and to provide food directly to those in need. Please email email@example.com if you are in need of assistance at this time and we’ll figure out what we can do to help.
How can I stay connected with the asham, Maharaj-ji, and Hanuman-ji?
The ashram will continue live-streaming our 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM MST aartis here so you can have darshan from home. Additionally, we will be sharing more on our social media pages to help you stay connected with the Taos ashram. And, of course, as Maharaj-ji said, “whoever remembers me, I go to.” He is with us in time, regardless of where we are, we just have to remember Him.
How can I support the ashram?
If you would like to make a contribution to the ashram, please visit our online giving page: https://nkbashram.org/donate/. Your contribution will support the core costs of the ashram (such as electricity, insurance, and livestream costs) and will allow us to continue providing food to those in need in Taos.
Cancellation of Hanuman Jayanti Festival and Ashram Closing due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
Update: In response to the latest recommendation from the state of New Mexico, the ashram has made the difficult call to fully close the ashram and mandir to all guests at this time. We will continue to monitor the situation and will provide an update around April 9th. More details here.
Hanuman Jayanti Cancelled: We have made the difficult call to cancel the Hanuman Jayanti festival (scheduled for April 3-5th). There will be no gatherings at the ashram for this event and no meals or prasad served.
Ashram Closing: Effective Monday, March 16th the Ashram will be closed, following recommendations by the state to limit social contact and cancel all gatherings over 100 people.
- There will be no chai served, no prasad meals, and no community kirtan or seva projects.
- There will be no access to the sunroom, kitchen, and sunroom bathrooms. If you would like to have darshan in the Maharaj-ji’s Darshan Hall, please ask a caretaker and we will grant you access.
The mandir and mandir bathrooms will remain open, but we are strongly recommending that devotees limit their time at the ashram and that out-of-state, sick, or high-risk individuals not travel to the ashram at this time.
- Do not visit if you are feeling ill. Seek medical attention as needed and avoid situations where you could infect others.
We will have limited, to-go dry prasad available in the mandir vestibule, no other meals will be served.
Livestream of aartis: 7:00 A.M. and 7:00 P.M. aartis will be livestreamed, watch at home here: https://livestream.com/NeemKaroliBabaAshram/events/7546503
Sanitation Procedures: In the past weeks, we have introduced new sanitation and food safety procedures to help ensure the health of the satsang. We will be disinfecting all high-touch surfaces in the mandir and bathrooms multiple times a day and reducing areas of contact where the virus can be transmitted.
Letter from Ashram’s General Manager:
As a result of the rapidly evolving situation with Covid-19 and the recent state of emergency declared in New Mexico, the ashram has made the difficult call to cancel the upcoming Hanuman Jayanti celebration. This decision was not made lightly. While we would love to celebrate with all of you, the recommendations from government officials and our responsibility to public health and the wellbeing of our satsang has meant making this difficult call.
In addition to cancelling Hanuman Jayanti, the ashram will be cancelling all community gatherings for the foreseeable future.
Starting on Monday, March 16th, the ashram will no longer be serving chai, lunch or dinner prasad and will not be hosting Tuesday, Saturday, or Sunday kirtan and prasad. The sunroom and ashram kitchen will be closed to guests and we will not be accepting reservations in the dharmsala at this time (if you have an existing reservation, we will reach out with more information).
The mandir and mandir bathrooms will remain open for Maharaj-ji and Hanuman-ji darshan and we will have limited to-go dry chana (chickpea) prasad available. We are strongly recommending that devotees limit their time at the ashram and that out-of-state, sick, or high-risk individuals not travel to the ashram at this time.
Since we are cancelling all in-person gatherings at the ashram, we will be streaming the 7:00 A.M. MST and 7:00 P.M. MST aartis so devotees can connect with Maharaj-ji and Hanuman-ji from home.
These changes will be in place until the Covid-19 virus is contained and the recommendations from the government and health officials change. Over the past couple of weeks we have introduced new sanitation and food safety procedures to help ensure the health of the satsang. Notably, we will be disinfecting all high-touch surfaces in the mandir and bathrooms multiple times a day during this time and reducing areas of contact where the virus can be transmitted. We are also exploring additional ways to improve sanitation and safety, which will remain in place even after this virus is contained to keep the community safe.
We will provide updates on our website, Facebook page, and through email as the situation unfolds. By His grace we will all be healthy and through this pandemic quickly. We are hopeful that we will see many of you in July for Guru Purnima and Ram Dass’ Celebration of Life.
Please visit our website at nkbashram.org to view the aarti livestreams starting Monday, March 16th, to support the ashram with an online donation, or to purchase any puja items from the Puja Dukan. If you have any questions, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Under His blanket and with love,
Devotee and Sevak (in the role of General Manager)