Our dear friend and teacher Maya Balog left her body on December 10, 2010. In this article are moving words dedicated to Maya, from Swami Veda Bharati and others, including her Eulogy, obituary, and much more. You'll also find a gallery of photos. Please leave a comment, if you have a story to tell about your experiences with Maya.
In Memory of Maya, by Swami Veda Bharati
There are a fortunate few who leave the world with a vessel more full than the one with which they arrived.
The vessel of some get so full that it spills its drops into the hearts and minds of all whom they touch.
Margo, Maya, is indeed one of those who spilled of her fullness and has carried a full vessel with her.
She leaves behind her hearts and minds feeling fulfilled with the teachings she imparted by her personal presence and by her words and acts.
As the spiritual journeys go, on the one hand, it may have been several incarnations long but in this body I saw her moving steadily for more than three decades towards her goal of a more and more sattvic and purified being.
We should celebrate that she succeeded and along with that passed on generously a part of her success to so many in different parts of the world from North America to India, Korea, Hungary, Italy and many other countries in different continents.
Birds leave no feather prints in the sky. Fish leave no fin prints in the sea, but great purified ones leave their footprints in the form of imprints, samskaras, in the hearts and personalities of those who choose to listen to them.
A flower may wilt into dust, yes, dust to dust, but the honey bees have preserved its honey, the perfumer has saved its fragrance and in this subtler form the flower lives on.
So with the honey and fragrance of Margo’s teachings and imprints live on in the honeycombs of many souls and the vials of many hearts which she filled with her fragrance.
Grief is natural but a more fitting tribute to Margo is preserving the honey and fragrance.
As one Italian friend has written; the Master has carried her aloft. She becomes one with the universe. May her presence linger fresh and strong in the lives of those whom she loved and touched so selflessly.
I invoke our Gurudeva to keep her in His bosom as long as their laws require it to be so but, then, we know that she will be back to grant teachings evermore.
Yours in Memoriam,
In Service of Gurudeva and his Disciples,
Swami Veda Bharati
POEM TO MAYA BY STUDENT IN ITALY
(English translation by Cristine Nobile is at end)
Dolce Nobile Maya! Il tuo nome è cantato dalle Stelle degli Alti Cieli e il tuo Sorriso si espande in Eterno! Poco ti ho conosciuta, ma molto amata: mi desti Tu la traduzione scritta del Mantra Personale a cui mi aveva iniziato Swami Veda, dicendomi: sono qui per qualsiasi chiarimento. Poche parole abbiamo scambiato, ma molti sguardi d'intesa! Il chiarimento di quel Mantra me lo ha dato la Vita ed ora lo canto serena! Ti ho sognata a settembre e parlavi con un'altra Swami: mi hai guardata ed hai sorriso. Da quella notte il mio Mantra cantava anche con Te, lo so. Ora salutami da vicino Swami Rama, che per mano ti ha condotta tra le Stelle. Tu ora non ti chiami più Maya: il velo è tolto! Tu ora sei Luce Purissima Ineffabile! Vola in alto cara, vola in alto! Canterò per Te, perché Tu diventi guida per noi! Ti voglio bene! Sil
Sweet Noble Maya! your name is sung by the stars of the High Heavens and your smile expands into Eternal!
I have known you not much, but I very loved you: You gave me the written translation of my Mantra, to which I had been initiated by Swami Veda, saying me: I’m here for any clarification.
We have exchanged a few words, but many glances of understanding!
The clarification of that mantra was given to me by the Life and now serene I sing it! I have dreamt of you in September and you were talking with another Swami: you looked at me and smiled. From that night my Mantra also sang with You, I know.
Now give my close salutation to Swami Rama, who guided you among the stars taking your hand. Now, your name is no more Maya: the veil is removed! Now You are the most Pure Ineffable Light ! Fly high Dear, fly high! I will sing for you for you become guide for us! I love you! Sil
LETTER FROM KEEY SCOTT
Dear Yoga friends and family,
It is with great sadness and also with immense gratitude for her life and feeling all the blessings that Maya Margo has shared with each of us that I let you know that Maya Margo passed away in the night (Dec. 10) shortly after 4:00am. I went to see her yesterday, before she passed, it is a blessing that her body has let her go. I read to her from Swami Rama’s “Living with the Himalayan Masters”, the last few chapters about death and dying.....
“I am a free soul now, in great joy. I am a wave of bliss in the ocean of the universe. I am free from all fears and anxieties.”
I read this to her over and over, and other passages that I hoped would help her to leave her body and ease her passing. She was not able to speak or move herself, her breath so shallow, but I believe she could hear me.
When I left the Maha Mrityunjaya was playing on the cd player, and I kissed her and wished her peace on her journey to God. Keep her in your prayers and thoughts, hold her in the light, to help support her shining spirit as it journeys through this transition from life to death and beyond. If it has meaning for you Swami Veda Bharati has indicated that for the first 24 hours after her death the Akhanda-japa:
vyāptam yena carācaram
tat padam darśitam yena
tasmai śrī-gurave namaḥ|
Following that 24 hr period Maha Mrityunjaya mantra ( महामृत्युंजय मंत्र) as a prayer for moksha, spiritual liberation:
Om tryambakam yajāmahesugandhim pushti-vardhanamurvārukamiva bandhanānmṛtyor mukṣīya māmṛtāt
Her funeral will be held Sunday Dec. 12th in the afternoon at 3pm at the St. Emeric (Hungarian) Parish, 12960 - 112 Street, Edmonton. Visitation will be held Saturday afternoon (Dec. 11th) from 3-5pm at Park Memorial, 9709-111Ave, Edmonton.
Donations in Margo’s memory can be made to East West Yoga Society, to be donated to Swami Veda’s Ashram in Rishikesh to benefit the school and hospital, or to the Calvin Hungarian Presbyterian Church, to go to benefit Hungarian Disaster Flood Relief.
If you wish to write to Maya Margo’s family their address is:(Steve) Balog Family40 Beaverbrook CrescentSt. Albert, AlbertaT8N 2L4
The circle of people that Maya touched is so great that I apologize if you were not contacted personally to receive this news. On my behalf if you know of others who would care to know of her passing please send this along so that she may be remembered and carried in our hearts and thoughts, where she will continue to live on and be with us.
Peace and Blessings to you all,
Song translated from Hindi to English by Ammaji Arya in honor of Maya
For our friend, Maya
I would like to dedicate my free translation of this beautiful song to our dear departed friend, Margo Balog, fondly known as Maya. Her dedicated service and love to all will remain as a light in our hearts. The original song is from the Hindi language movie, Swadesh.
Go on, O Traveler, keep going, keep going.
See how beautiful are the flowers and notice how colorful is the world! Why is my heart impatient, who is it who longs to meet me? What my heart yearns for is perhaps waiting for me on that wide swath of the compass. Life is like a car whose wheels turn the spokes of life; there are rivers of tears, but there are also gardens of joys. Wherever I cast my eyes, colors stream into my sight. The breezes are cool and so is the shade. The overcast clouds give pause to my heart. May all my dreams kindle fire in my heart, and all the paths you choose present you with the pearl from every moment of your travel, so keep going, Traveler, keep going.
Forget your troubles, heed the call of this vibrant world! My heart is light, my shoulders have cast aside their burdens, and childhood innocence returns as though after many years someone took a dip in the holy Ganges. The heart is purged, every bond is broken, life is full of peace, love is in my heart; this is the victory of life. Spread love, O Traveler, wherever you go, light a million lamps. The rivers, the hills, the flowers and the skies - what do they say to you? - O Traveler, keep going, keep going.
Prayers for Maya Margo
Led by Pandit Hari Shankar Dabral of the Himalayan Tradition of Yoga and Meditation, Disciple of Swami Rama and Swami Veda Bharati
One minute of silence
OM….. OM….. OM…..
Asato mā sad gamaya. Lead me from the unreal to the Real
Tamaso mā jyotir gamaya. Lead me from darkness to Light
Mṛtyor mā amṛtam gamaya. Lead me from mortality to Immortality
Om, Shāntih, Shāntih, Shāntih. Om Peace Peace Peace
Prayer for student and teacher
Saha nāvavatu May He/She protect us both
Saha nāu bhunaktu May He/She nourish us both
Saha vīryam karavāvahai May we work together with great energy
Tejasvi nāv adhītam astu May our study be thorough and fruitful
Mā vīdvisāvạhai May we never hate each other
Om Shāntih, Shāntih, Shāntih. Om Peace, Peace, Peace
Maha Mrityunjaya mantra (as a prayer for moksha, spiritual liberation)
OM Tryambakam yajāmahe Sugandhim pushti-vardhanam Urvārukamiva bandhanān Mṛtyor mukṣīya māmṛtāt
We Meditate on the Three-eyed reality which nourishes and increases the sweet fullness of life. Like a cucumber from its stem may we be separated ("liberated"), not from immortality but from death. - Rig Veda 7.59.12
Maya Margo’s Eulogy December 12, 2010
Where and how to begin to describe the profound impact that Maya Margo has had on us all gathered here. It is difficult to describe the multiform ways that she has touched our lives in words. Her blessings and gifts to us will remain with us always, in the lotus blossom of our hearts, continuing to work and grow within us as we journey on without her physical presence in this life.
I have been so blessed to have spent so much precious time with Maya over the years that she has been my yoga teacher. Maya was the most generous and kind teacher that one could ever aspire to have. Always present, always loving, never judging. Her sphere of influence and knowledge vast…. so many lives touched by her grace and love.
A spiritual aspirant in thought, and in action, dedicated to her faith, nurturing a deeply rooted love of Yoga and God within herself and those around her. In her presence it was easy to see the benefits of practice, and to be inspired to delve deeper within ourselves to seek the Truth, with her as a steadfast living example of the strength, beauty, and perfection of the Spirit within us all.
Time was always something she was short of as she was always giving so much to those around her, and far away…. always connecting and working with a worldwide community, training and mentoring teachers and students alike, here and abroad. Even though she was so busy and had so many demands on her time she was always present to you when you were with her. Sincere in every kind word, wanting to know how you and your family were doing and what was going on in your life. She let us know that we were important to her. Even as she suffered physically during her illness her thoughts and questions were always directed to ask how everyone else was doing, with a sincere interest in our daily goings on of life. Always, I would go to see her with the intent of supporting and giving to her, and always after our visits I would leave feeling filled, having experienced the joy one feels when connecting deeply with someone you love, the gift of her love for me and my family so warm and encompassing, as she was with us all. Selflessly giving, she would always put others needs before her own.
She made each of us feel so special, so connected to the Source. She saw within each of us the Light, the Truth, the God-seed within, our True-Selves shinning through her twinkling eyes and gentle smile. In doing so she gave us the opportunity to see our own beauty within. To love ourselves the way she loved us.
Maya Margo’s dedicated work, over the past 4 decades has been instrumental in establishing the Yoga Association of Alberta, East West Yoga Society and the Himalayan International Yoga teacher training programs. She has worked tirelessly hand in hand with so many to foster the community of Yoga teachers, students, friends and family that we can all be grateful for here in Alberta and abroad, in India, Minneapolis, Hungary, Korea, Italy, and Mexico, to name a few.
All of us here have been so blessed to have had the privilege to know Maya and share in her life. A gifted teacher, with a depth of knowledge and experience that will be greatly missed in the yoga community, we can all comfort and support each other, to take up the task of filling some of the gaps she has left… to continue this work.
Maya was able to give teachings right up until the time of her death. She was tremendously gifted in being able to see the needs of each individual, and could also teach on very subtle levels. Teaching with generosity, and kindness, her love knew no bounds. She was an amazing listener, and her great skill made those around her feel heard and they became a little lighter in her presence… unburdened.
For some of us here we had never breathed before we met Margo, she gave us the gift of space within and without, in our bodies to start with and then gently introducing the notion that we could take this space into our daily lives, as we worked with the aspects of the mind.
Striving for depth in gentle ways, always encouraging a comfortable capacity of development and work, always encouraging that cultivation of our inner awareness, connection to body, mind, and breath ….. to becoming attune and listening to our inner wisdom.
In the months before her death we would talk about the importance of connecting with the natural world. “To pay attention to nature is to see the work of God in all things” she said. She also spoke of the importance of our mothers in our lives especially in relation to our personal spiritual development and the impact they have had. Certainly we cannot deny the profound impact that Maya Margo has had on each of us, a spiritual mother to so many, representing the Mother Divine. I am so blessed to have had her call me daughter.
As Christmas draws near we will surely feel the loss of her life in ours. It was a favorite time of year for Margo a natural extension of herself, as she loved to give and spread love and celebrate the light in those around her. In the twinkling lights at Christmas she would delight, saying. ”Do you know why we love the lights, it is because it reminds us of our true nature, that ever wise, ever pure God consciousness within us all.”
May we too hold Maya Margo in the light and love of our hearts as she journeys to God. Let us remember her often in our own kind words shared with one another. May the memory of her grace and love for each of us give us strength in the challenges of our lives.
With all my love, Keely
Margo Balog ,
Margo Maya It is with joy that we celebrate the life of Margo Maya Balog, who passed away December 10th, 2010 at the age of 69 years. Margo was born in Kolozsvar (Cluj), Transylvania on May 22nd, 1941 and grew up in the surrounding area until she was 28 years old at which point she moved to Jugoslavia with her husband Stephen. In 1971 she relocated to Germany and three years later immigrated to Edmonton, Alberta, Canada where she remained and raised her family. She will always be loved, honored and remembered by her husband, Stephen; children, Attila (Karen), Reka (Dave), and Botond (Ingrid); her grandchildren, Jakob, Noah, Natalie, Isabel and Lincoln; as well as numerous other family and friends including the global yoga community she so cherished. Special thanks to Swami Veda, Keely, Barbara, Margaret, Linda, Dave and the countless other yogis from around the world for their support and encouragement. Visitation for Margo will be held on Saturday, December 11th, 2010 from 3:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. at Park Memorial Chapel, 9709 - 111 Avenue, Edmonton, AB. Mass of the Resurrection Sunday, December 12th, 2010 at 3:00 p.m. at St. Emeric Roman Catholic Hungarian Church, 12960 - 112th Street, Edmonton, AB. Those wishing to make donations to the Ashram in Rishikesh or to the Hungarian Disaster Relief Fund can leave them at the church service on Sunday or mail them with their specific donation wishes payable to Calvin Hungarian Presbyterian Church, 11701 - 86 Street, Edmonton, AB T5B 3J7. To Our Mom; Until We See You Again.