In Memorium to the Spirit-in-Nature Essences Founder: from His Assistant

Rarely does a person come into this world with the ability to transform so many lives. The silent founder of Spirit-in-Nature Essences was one of them. . .

May 15, 2013

On Sunday, April 21, at 8 in the morning, Swami Kriyananda (also known as J. Donald Walters), passed from this world. He was a month short of his 87th birthday.

Swami, or Swamiji as he was called at Ananda Village where I have lived for several decades, is rightly credited as the founder of Spirit-in-Nature Essences. In fact, the name change 6 years ago from Master’s Flower Essences—referring to the master teacher, Paramhansa Yogananda, who supplied the interpretations of the psycho-spiritual qualities of the food sources of our essence line—was suggested by Swami. He also founded the Ananda communities worldwide, wrote 150 books, and 400 pieces of music. (

In 36 years of his friendship and guidance, I saw him receptive to, and fascinated by, many forms of holistic treatments. Light healing, sound healing, color healing. And flower essences. As Yogananda explained, the most powerful healing methods are those which activate our own life force.

In the late 70s, Kriyananda and I chatted together about Yogananda’s list of foods and their “vibrational vitamins”: cherries for cheerfulness, pears for peace, etc. Thus this line of flower essences was born. Imagine a time when only the Bach Flower Remedies were known. Practically prehistoric, if not unimaginable! He suggested I formulate this line, based on Yogananda’s wisdom of the fruits and vegetables, working with the Bach preparation method. I said, “But this hasn’t been done before, and I’m nervous about it. “Don’t worry,” Swami chuckled, “just tell people you’re my assistant.”

To quote the Ananda website: “Kriyananda signed his letters, ‘In Divine Friendship.’ Kriyananda saw God in everyone, friends and strangers alike. The friendship he offered was to their souls not their egos, and he inspired others to meet him on that level.

Always loving, compassionate, and forgiving, he gave others the confidence that they, too, could overcome their limitations and realize their highest potential.” How perfectly he exemplified each of the 20 qualities of Spirit-in-Nature Essences!

Yogananda has said, “God smiles at us through the flowers.” Perhaps now Swamiji, as we will continue to call him, lives on in those flowers.

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