For the second year running, the French collective launched its all-France self-realisation
drive, more commonly known as the Tour de France. This year the Tour kicked off
in Menton, close to the French/Italian border, just after Guru Puja. During Guru
Puja Shri Mataji blessed the Tour and a range of official Tour tee shirts was
presented to Her.
A small team of 11 Yogis, Yoginis and Yuvas started off with 2 cars filled
with leaflets, information boards, posters, presentation stand and all the
rest. Our comms workshop (Atelier Vishnumaya) gave a boost by producing great
information panels, pamphlets, follow-up forms and the tee shirts.
As the Tour
progressed from the July 15 start through to the September 15 end, Yogis
from across France joined and left the tour. This year we made a concerted
effort to be more professional with our presentation of Sahaja Yoga and our
marching orders were: vibrations, professionalism and enjoyment!
For the French
public, that does not have much of a tradition of spirituality, we had found
in the past that the ‘street methods’ of giving fast
realisation were a little shocking and sometimes put people off receiving their
realisation. And so this year, we focused our attention not only on the number
of realisations given, but the quality of the information and experience and
to respecting the protocol of giving realisation, so that the seekers felt
the specialness and uniqueness of the experience. We also spent a lot more
time listening to the seekers to understand exactly what is was that they were
searching for so that we could really give them what they needed to receive.
Each day began with a collective meditation or Puja and each evening finished
with a collective clearing session and meditation and we were warmly received
in the homes of Sahaja Yogis throughout France. For the most part we gave realisation
in the streets, market places and during organised public programmes, and at
times with musical accompaniment. The choice of cities and methods was decided
with vibrations and even if only a few people received their realisation in
very small villages, we really felt that it was the vibrations that guided
us to that particular place.
A Few Tour Statistics:
- Duration of Tour in weeks: 9
- Kilometres traversed: 6,100
- Newly realised souls: 1,029
- Official public programmes: 17
- Towns visited where seekers received realisation:
- Large posters put up publicly: 3,000
- Small posters put up in shops: 1,000
- Pamphlets distributed: 40,000
Feeling the Cool Breeze
A Few Memorable Moments:
- During the very first evening of outdoor realisations of the Tour,
we had a very strengthening experience that helped us throughout the rest
of the Tour. Just a few minutes after setting up our stand, an extremely
virulent anti-sect person started making a fuss in the street and was trying to
take down our stand. She was talking to all the passers-by saying that we
dangerous etc, while her own husband was hiding his face behind his hands,
as it was
The finale of her act was that all the passers-by spoke
to her about freedom of expression, that we were doing no harm and some
her that “You are mad, go and get yourself treated”. And so we
heard Shri Mataji’s voice through the passers-by and instead of feeling
worried we were heartily laughing inside.
- In Bordeaux it was difficult to give
realisation openly in the street and so we did an all-night postering
run from 11pm thru to 5am.
We were overjoyed
when during a public programme in Quimper, more than 500 kms away from
Bordeaux, the people at the programme told us that they had seen the
posters in Bordeaux!
From that moment on we felt a burst of enthusiasm for postering – a
touch of Divine encouragement no doubt!
- An old lady was telling us about here problems
of arthritis before receiving her realisation. She had been to many specialists,
even one today itself.
still no improvement in her condition. And then she exclaimed loudly
before the group during the public programme that she was no longer feeling
- The Tour reached Paris two days before Shri Mataji, without any planning
on our part. We offered Her flowers on behalf of all the newly realised souls
and all those who had participated in the Tour.
It seemed to us that
Mataji received the Tour in Her home, as had all the other Yogis throughout
and we could rest and serve our Mother during Her five day visit, before
embarking on the final leg of the Tour.
Nirina and the Tour de France