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Vegetarian Cuisine


Oh Oh. Another tempting dessert!  Here’s a creamy, easy to prepare dessert, full of fibre. Prunes are an anti-oxidant superfood. Another plus factor is that they do not cause a rapid rise in blood sugar levels and have a low glycemic index rating. Serves 4-6.

9 ounces dried prunes, pitted
1 cup water
1 tablespoon agar-agar flakes (for thickening)
1 tablespoon honey or date syrup
2 ¼ cups creamy plain yoghurt
1 teaspoon lemon juice
¼ cup chopped nuts to decorate


  1. Put the prunes and water in a pan and bring to boil, let simmer about 20 minutes until soft.
  2. In a blender or food processor, blend till smooth.
  3. Return prune purée to the pan, stir in the agar-agar flakes and simmer 2 minutes longer.
  4. Leave to cool slightly.
  5. When lukewarm, fold in the honey or date syrup, yoghurt and lemon juice.
  6. Pour into individual dishes and chill until set.
  7. Decorate with chopped nuts before serving.

Note: Vegans can substitute a soy based yoghurt or a toasted nut dream for dairy yoghurt.

This recipe is an edited contribution for the Sivananda Gurugram, sourced from The Yoga Cookbook: Food for Body and Mind – Recipes from the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres” 1999.

The lower human nature should gradually give way to an illumined divine nature through a process of spiritualization of the entire being. – Sri Swami Sivananda

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 Renunciation is the bestower of peace and immortality. – Sri Swami Sivananda


SIDDHIS – Psychic Powers

The Aspirant becomes free only when his individual will becomes merged in the Divine Will. Licentiousness and autocracy must not be mistaken for spiritual freedom. By becoming a tool (Nimitta) in the hands of God, the Bhakta destroys the egoism or the little false ‘I’, but gains all the Divine Aisvarya or the Siddhis of the Lord. He becomes perfectly free. He has become one with God now.

Siddhis that are brought into the present life, by birth, indicate their attainment in a previous life, but it does not guarantee that the individual is making proper use of them in this life. Those gained through chemical means are not necessarily associated with any level of spirituality at all and can be easily governed by the ego. Siddhis achieved by Mantra repetition or tapas, austerities are generally of a very high order as long as they are performed for attaining God-Realization rather than personal or material gain. Powers that come from ‘Samadhi’ are the purest, for they come to the aspirant without being desired. It must be remembered that siddhis are not the aim but a by-product of the path to God-Realization

A Hatha Yogi gets Siddhis (psychic powers) by uniting Prana and Apana and by taking the united Prana-Apana through the six Chakras (Centres of spiritual energy) to Sahasrara at the crown of the head. A Raja Yogi gets Siddhis by Samyama, i.e., combined practice of Dharana, Dhyana and Samadhi at one time. A Jnana Yogi exhibits Siddhis through pure will or Sat-Sankalpa. A Bhakta gets Siddhis through self-surrender and the consequent descent of grace. Kriyas, viz., Neti, Dhauti, Nauli, Basti, Tratak and Kapalabhati belong to Hatha Yoga. All need not practise these Kriyas. Those who have got much phlegm in the body should practise these Kriyas. Learn these under an expert Hatha Yogi. Hatha Yoga is not the goal. It is only a means to an end. Take to Raja Yoga after possessing good health.

Beware of Siddhis! If you are drawn to the psychic powers or Siddhis, you will miss the supreme goal.- Sri Swami Sivananda