Are your services open to everybody, or just for members? Do I need to sign up?
There are no membership requirements to attend our meditations or readings services — all are welcome. However, the Lessons study group (Wednesday evenings) does require that all attendees be currently receiving the SRF Lessons or have completed the 3.5-year course. Application forms for the SRF Lessons are available at our chapel or online.
Is there any charge for meditation services?
There is no charge for attending services. On Sundays and Thursdays, there is an optional offertory that helps cover our operating expenses, and allows us to assist in the worldwide humanitarian work of Self-Realization Fellowship.
Where can I learn more about Self-Realization Fellowship and Paramahansa Yogananda?
You can learn more about SRF by visiting the Self-Realization Fellowship website at www.yogananda.org.
Undreamed of Possibilities, the introductory booklet on the teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda, is available on the SRF website, and copies are also available on our free-literature table.
You can learn more about the life of Paramahansa Yogananda by reading his book, Autobiography of a Yogi, which can be found at most major bookstores and public libraries.
The London Centre has a book-room of Self-Realization Fellowship books, CD’s, and DVD’s.
How much experience do I need to go to your meditations?
You do not need any background in meditation to attend our services, although it is helpful to have the SRF meditation techniques.
What style of meditation do you practice? Do I need to bring a cushion or other materials?
We meditate with closed eyes, seated on chairs. There is no need to bring any accessories.
Are the meditations guided?
Apart from brief instructions given at the beginning of the service, the meditations are not guided. Those interested in learning the SRF techniques of meditation are encouraged to apply for the SRF Lessons. There are guided meditations available on the SRF website.
Which service should I attend first?
The Sunday Inspirational Service (11:00 am–12:00 noon) is a good introduction for those not familiar with meditation or with SRF. The Inspirational Service includes shorter periods of meditation that can help one prepare for the longer periods (approximately 45 minutes) in our Meditation Services. The Sunday service also offers the best opportunity to meet & chat with other members of our group.
Is it okay to arrive after a service has started?
Gurudeva often declared that groups of deeply meditating devotees create a powerful spiritual magnet that attracts other sincere souls to God. That is why he stressed that the primary purpose of such groups is to bring together truth-seeking souls to search for and find God — through application of the divine law of united concentration and meditation as taught by Self-Realization Fellowship.
We would therefore recommend that you arrive in good time prior to the start of any service so that you can settle before the service starts and participate in the whole group meditation.
If however you do arrive after the service has already started, please wait for the greeter to usher you into the chapel at an appropriate time.
You may want to sit quietly in the lobby or social hall, silently say your own opening prayer and start meditating until during the next chant, the announcements, or a period of reading the greeter will admit you into the chapel. Please do not enter the chapel during a period of silent meditation.
Is the London Centre accessible to everyone?
Yes, portable ramps are available at the centre. Please ask if you require any assistance.
What is considered appropriate attire?
We encourage those who attend to dress conservatively, as you generally would when attending a church or religious service. Please, no shorts, bare feet etc.
I have heard about Kriya Yoga and would like to learn more. Where can I find information?
If you are new to SRF, you can learn more about Kriya Yoga in Chapter 26 of Autobiography of a Yogi, in which Paramahansa Yogananda describes the history & purpose of Kriya Yoga. If you have further questions, please check the SRF website or call Self-Realization Fellowship at (323) 225-2471, 9:00 am–5:00 pm (USA Pacific Time), and a monastic will be happy to discuss them with you.
What if I have more questions?
If you have further questions about our group & its activities, please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our emails are checked daily.
Are there other SRF groups in the UK and Ireland where I can go and meditate?
Yes, please contact the International Headquarters for further information.