May our peace filled hearts extend with prayer to all those suffering during these stressful times in displacement and injury within Ukraine. Let our sankalpa for our Ganesha Gayatri japa be repeated before each meditation that the fruits of such actions be offered for “Harmony with Mother Earth and all Her sentient beings with a resolute commitment to ahimsa in all forms.”

On behalf of the Sangha our loving appreciation to all to those involved through the Tradition’s Budapest Centre, who are working together at this time to provide all the necessary love, support and shelter for displaced families for the past 3 weeks.

Please read below the message shared by our Hungarian family about the relief efforts carried out by their volunteers:

On the afternoon of 3 March, we received a call that some young people from India, who were fleeing the war in Ukraine, needed our help. That evening, the twenty frightened-eyed Indian students of medicine arrived at the Himalayan Tradition’s Budapest centre.

Allow us to quote from the words of one of our dear fellow practitioners, Agnes, who, among other things, welcomed them that evening:

“They are slowly starting to talk, I wish they wouldn’t. It took them five minutes to get out of the metro and the bombs came, three of their companions died right  there, and they don’t know anything else. The people of Kharkov were told to flee three hours before the attack, but they are coloured people, nobody really cared about them. They had enough time to take their passports with them, they say in perfect English. They are 24 years old, but they already know everything about life and now ….death, and this knowledge is evident in their every mature movement as they make themselves a bed from the mattresses and blankets in our Himalayan yoga studio.”

We now know with absolute certainty that all 20 young people have successfully arrived in their Indian homes, so it is with great pleasure that we write these words to you: their situation is now resolved!
But there are many others who, unfortunately, are not in such a blessed situation.

Hungary, as a neighboring country, has a special role to play in the care and shelter of refugees, and has experienced the second largest refugee influx to date. Since the beginning of the crisis, over 300,000 refugees have crossed the Hungarian-Ukrainian border, and this number is expected to rise further in the coming weeks as fighting nears Kiev (the capital).

In light of this sad fact, we have decided to provide shelter for those in need at the Himalayan Yoga and Meditation Association’s Budapest centre for the weeks of crisis.

A very well organised team of volunteers -all practitioners of our Tradition- will take care of the asylum seekers who come to us.

The Ukrainian families that arrive are mainly women and children who have been forced to leave the male members of the family at home. In addition to accommodation, we provide warm meals and good words to the first arrivals, and we have equipped the room with games, art materials and activities for the children to help them forget the difficulties of fleeing.

We would like to thank everyone for your caring love and support at this time; we are very grateful.