"Among my lady disciples, you will have the first seat with Sister, (Sister Gyanamata, an original disciple) in heaven and in my consciousness." Letter to Sri Durga Mata from Paramahansa Yogananda
A Celebration of the Life, Counsel, Talks and Healings.
This peaceful haven of inspiration, deep truth and experience of her direct presence for all, is devoted to the life of an American saint and nun, Sri Durga Mata, one of the original close disciples of Paramahansa Yogananda, the great spiritual teacher who founded Self-Realization Fellowship/Yogoda Sat Sanga. In integrity and honor to true spiritual truth through self purification, we dedicate this Tribute to the realization for all that the veil of separation from all loving saints and true gurus is but an illusion. For those receptive to their love, guidance and great blessings, we too can transcend our limited mortal consciousness to the realization of our own latent divinity. We are called not to merely view from afar, but to ourselves bloom into the radiance they call us to, by our own selfless love for God in personal self mastery of our own humanity, for we are of His glory.
Although Sri Durga Mata left her body in 1993, her radiant guidance, loving presence, and healing intercession is manifesting in practical, everyday documented earthly lives of many.. Her joy in assisting and healing both people and our beloved animals is a practical reality for those on the path of sincere discipleship with Paramahansa Yogananda and to all who love her. This is not just for the few, or those removed from this world for others to read about revering from afar, but for all to awaken into and experience for themselves. Eternity is within us here and now, as is the Master's love.
We deeply appreciate those who experienced years of her divine guidance for sharing Sri Durga Mata’s love and wisdom.
Welcome. Absorb The Beautiful Talks of Sri Durga Mata
. The unique presence of Sri Durga Mata both before and after her physical lifetime continues to deeply intercede, inspire and heal. You are invited to enter ther gracious arena to enjoy a beautiful, vibrantly energized talk given to devotees.
The Invisible Man Devotee Class and Chant - First Devotee Class
( Live rare class recordings )
The Invisible Man Devotee Class and Chant - Second Devotee Class
Sri Durga Mata was a nun in the monastic order of Self-Realization Fellowship for more than 65 years. During that time, she was an exalted disciple of Paramahansa Yogananda, founder of Self Realization Fellowship/ Yogoda Satsanga Society. She served him and the organization in numerous ways, including overseeing the organization with Sister Gyanamata during Master's travels, Treasurer and later Secretary, member of the Board of Directors and finally as guided by Master she lovingly provided the direct counsel of numerous disciples who met with her regularly seeking the light and pure love channeled through her from Paramahansa Yogananda.
Paramahansa Yogananda Instructs Durga Ma to Teach Adults and Children
"You are at last doing the very thing I have always wanted you to do." Paramahansa Yogananda
In a pivotal life turning point, Florina Darling; ‘Durga Mata’, describes the event that established her future in teaching her spiritual classes and personal counseling conveying her teachers instructives. Children/families resided in the hermitage in and attended her Praecepta classes with the adults.
After I had returned for my second period of living in the hermitage in 1948, one day I went over to the large kitchen where the young children disciples ate and had their living quarters in the North end of the hermitage. When I stepped into the door of the kitchen, they began to ask me spiritual questions. After I left them I was happy to have been of service to them. By the time I reached Rajasi's kitchen where he was standing, Masters meaning of "not being just a housekeeper" came very forcefully to my mind. With the joy of comprehension, I clapped my hands and loudly answered my own questioning mind, "so that is what Master meant by me not being just a housekeeper.
It all came very clearly to my mind now. I immediately went right back to the children and told them that I was going to take them in hand and be responsible for passing on to them the benefits of the wonderful training Master had so patiently given us, and also I formulated a Praecepta class for the adults of the colony every Monday night where the children could also attend, and then I wrote Master a note to that affect. The next time I saw Master he joyfully said, "You are at last doing the very thing I have always wanted you to do, and that you did it on your own accord pleases me most."
That Master thought I did not want to do these things bothered me for some time until one day I told Master I would like to clarify a few points with him regarding some of his misunderstanding and some of my motives. "Sir you said you were pleased that at last I was doing what you wanted me to do with the children and holding meetings every week, etc. Why did you not tell me you wanted me to do so, there is nothing I like better than to encourage and tell all what you kindly gave us, but I am very shy about pushing myself regarding spiritual things, for I don't feel worthy of such, and further, I heard you criticize one of the men for having regular meetings with the boys without asking you first. Therefore, I did not think I had the right to push myself forward."
Master answered, "That other man had another motive, he was trying to outdo Rajasi, who was meditating with the boys. Never compare yourself with that person, further, you should not have to be asked, you have a right to do anything spiritual without asking or waiting until I ask you. Shyness has no place in the spiritual world.”
Sri Durga Ma giving Kriya Initiation to disciples before leaving for India in October 1961
Beautiful certificate in which Paramahansa Yogananda ordains Sri Durga Ma a minister of SRF
For Many Years Ma Durga Continues Her Weekly Praecepta Classes at Paramahansa Yogananda’s Hermitage
I've kept up the meetings every possible week I was present at the hermitage. One day, years later, Master critically asked me, “I suppose you are not having your meetings anymore.” To which I happily answered, "Yes Sir, every week that I am there." This affirmative answer pleased and relieved him for he did not want me to stop, but was afraid I had, that is why he was so relieved.
Sri Durga Mata's beautiful chant to Yogananda
Master, oh how I love you
Without your presence, no joy can stay.
So please respond to
my calls to you
And keep delusion away.
Master, beloved Master,
with you I'm happy, though skies are gray.
So please respond to my calls to you
Oh, come, dear Master I pray.
Born Florina Dufour on November 8, 1903 in Iron Mountain, Michigan, her parents were French-Canadian and devout members of the Roman Catholic Church. Some of her childhood was spent in Canada, where she attended a French parochial school. Her family moved several times, finally to Detroit, Michigan where she learned English at the age of 13. To help her family financially, she left school at the age of 15. When she was 19, she married Orta L. Darling. She first met Yogananda when he lectured in Detroit in 1927. Intensely dedicated to these teachings, she joined a local group providing the teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda and by 1929, had decided to move to Los Angeles, to be closer to the headquarters and benefit physically from its warm climate.
Yogananda officiating a wedding and Sri Durga Ma upper right
When she arrived at the headquarters building, she was greeted by Yogananda who said “Where have you been? I have been waiting for you”. She later explained that he meant he had been waiting for her to join him in this lifetime. He gave her the monastic name “Ma Durga” because that had been her name in her previous lifetime where she lived in an Indian ashram that he had established.
Her husband, who also became an SRF member, realized that her path was as a monastic and after seven years of marriage, willingly wanted her to further her spiritual path to become a monastic disciple. She quickly earned Yogananda’s love and respect due to her complete and loyal dedication to him and his teachings. She served him in numerous ways, even though she had not received formal training in tasks such as cook, housekeeper, carpenter, office management, mechanical repairs by tuning in with Master, she quickly mastered them all.
Paramahansa Yogananda stated often that because she was so attuend to him, he could transmit his instructions to her and she carried them out completely. In her later years, she learned how to gold leaf (she gold-leafed the Hollywood Temple), became an artist painting and creating beautiful sculptures. Another key part of her life service was a spiritual counselor, indeed spiritual mother, to numerous sincerely dedicated SRF lay members seeking God.
"Meditation is not enough. You must have the virtues." Gyanamata
Daya Mata (Faye Wright) Past President of Self Realization Fellowship
Gyanamata (Mrs. Bissett) First Sister Renunciate
Sri Durga Mata(Florina Dufour)
Sri Durga Mata was so humble that she took no credit for the wisdom and love that she shared. Instead, she often said “Now, this is Master speaking. Pay attention”. Although she had little formal education, she radiated wisdom and love to those who were in tune. A saint is hard to describe. The intent of this Web site dedicated to her is to honor her life and service; to better explain this extraordinary person; and to help those who would like to know about her and through her, the incomparable Avatar, Paramahansa Yogananda, an incarnation of Divine Love.
This site is dedicated to Sri Durga Mata, who after spending her life with Yogananda as one of his closest, earliest devotees, lit up a pathway to his heart for others to experience through sharing her observances of his love of humor, joy, generosity, spreading of good cheer and fun. "With God, everything is fun. Without God, everything is anything but fun." Paramahansa Yogananda
Through her life example she has demonstrated the map, the reality of overcoming ones karma now, 'pulling out the thorns' and reaping the results of the path provided lovingly by Paramahansa Yogananda with His life teaching and techniques, as passed down by Babaji, to discover within us the truth, that God is holy love, not in the hereafter alone, but here and now, in all circumstances.
This site is additionally a homage to Sri Durga Mata's practical and profound intercessions and responses in my own life and the life of others that receive her commitment to intercede beautifully in the lives of those in inward communion with her, experiencing clear and immediate inexplicable change and improvement through healing's, guidance and compassion action.
D. White Enterprises
This site is unaffiliated with Self Realization Fellowship. To reach the Self Realization Church -Link for Books and Materials on Paramahansa Yogananda go to this link: https://www.yogananda-srf.org
Sri Durga Mata :
“It takes a special incarnation to come to these teachings.”
“lf you are in SRF now, you have been with Master in the past."
(previous incarnations / statement made by Sri Durga Ma in the 1980's).