By Mahantesh Math, India
It was the beginning of the first Covid wave in March 2020. I was to battle a crisis in my family during the same period. Shirdi Sai Baba assured me all the time that he was with me and he had never left my hand in any of the crises. I had been a devotee of Shirdi Sai Baba for many years. All that came into my life after he made me aware of his presence – call it mundane or spiritual, always bore his stamp. There was nothing that was really wanted. Yet, in those times of crisis, I needed some clarity on whatever that was happening in my life.
While browsing the internet, I chanced upon a YouTube channel, ‘Sai Baba Devotee Speaks,’ through which a person named Mohanji appeared. The video, though it did not make any particular impression on me, aroused my curiosity in him, which led me to the official website, Mohanji.org. My mind, in its ignorance, took him to be one of those feel-good Gurus who catered, particularly to the Western seekers. You can find many these days.
My mind began creating one barrier after another until I started to read his blogs. Mohanji from the blogs was different from the one in the videos. When I began going through his blogs, one after another, the amazing clarity and the stunning conviction took me over. I was feeling a gut-churning kind of sensation, and a shift was happening in me. One of the blogs was about the sense of ownership and doership.
I could not hold myself any longer and felt that I might get into sobs uncontrollably anytime soon. I just rushed to the bathroom in the house so as not to cause any misunderstanding with the relatives at home and went into uncontrollable sobs. Then, it dawned on me that Shirdi Sai Baba and Mohanji were no different. It has been my experience that whenever I visited Shirdi and came back home, more often than not, I used to get into such uncontrollable sobs. I was converted.
I wanted to explore more and more about Mohanji. As I had less work to do because of the Covid pandemic, this gave me ample time to explore about him. Strangely, in those days, while reading the blogs, the name ‘Mohan’ would crop up in unexpected ways. On the first day of reading, a relative was muttering to himself about a wrong call that he had received and that the name of the person on the phone was ‘Mohan.’
On the second day of reading, another relative was telling someone that a person from the medical lab had come to collect her blood for tests, and she added, even though it was not necessary, that his name was ‘Mohan.’ On the third day, my little daughter came to me and asked me in all her innocence, “Isn’t the name of Gandhiji, Mohandas?”
I had to go for a long trip, 9 hours of driving in those days of the pandemic, and I still remember, throughout the journey, his words that I had heard from the YouTube channels kept hitting me, where they were supposed to hit. I was enamoured of him. Then, as I was getting to know more about him, I began practising the ‘Power of Purity’ meditation that was available online, which affected me strongly.
Initiation into Consciousness Kriya
“Autobiography of a Yogi” was a book which I was aware of but was never curious to read until then. One fine day, when I began reading the book, my interest in Kriya was aroused. I also happened to come across the testimonials of Kriya Yogis – “Journals of Liberation” by Gurulight, at the same time. I was not sure whether I was really meant to receive it in this life or otherwise.
I applied, and I submitted this dilemma to Shirdi Sai Baba. I prayed to him that if it was meant for me, then let the application be accepted; otherwise, let it get rejected. I would be okay with whatever was given. The application was accepted, and I undertook the Kriya training online in April 2020 and then made it a regular practice.
One fine evening, I had done the Kriya and listened to Shiva Kavacham, which was quite powerful. It was then that I heard a bird chirping in the silence of that evening. Strangely, I felt that the bird was within me, and everything around me was within me. At that moment, when I looked at the portrait of Mohanji, something within me strongly felt that he was indeed Shiva.
Then I burst into sobs, and the floodgates were open. I kept telling him and pleading with him that if he allowed me to stay near his feet like a particle of dust, I would be indebted to him forever. It was at that moment that I heard the voice, “I have always loved you, Mahantesh.” That was so overwhelming that it took a while for me to grasp what had happened. All his grace! On the one hand, it was an emphatic reassurance of the past connection, and on the other, it was a reminder that I might have strayed away from the path in my past lives.
It was destined for me to have Mohanji’s first physical darshan at the Shirdi retreat in December 2021. That was a dream come true, as it was in the same retreat that the Kriya initiation was supposed to be held. The initiation turned out to be a surreal experience in his physical presence. When I sat with closed eyes, I almost lost myself in that magical atmosphere. While waiting for my turn, a volunteer patted my back gently to remind me that it was my turn.
When I went to him, I found him to be in an expanded state. While I kept looking into his eyes, he uttered some words that escaped my attention. The eyes, I felt, were like deep caves and that I could be lost forever if I entered them. The whole atmosphere was charged with gentle energy, and tears kept flowing down my cheeks while a beautiful bhajan sung by Natesh kept playing in the background.
The next day or so, everyone at the retreat was allowed to have individual interaction with him. With that gentle smile of his, he beckoned me to come when it was my turn, and that smile appeared to be something special – a smile of recognition. During the course of the conversation, he looked away for a while, and then his gaze turned towards me. All of a sudden, I felt as though my mind was put in a grinder, and my thoughts were running helter-skelter like popcorn. And it took a few seconds for everything to start settling down peacefully.
I can never forget that first retreat when I was welcomed to be a member of the M-family and allowed to flock with the birds of the same feather. I felt I belonged. I am grateful to Mohanji and the M-family.
|| JAI BRAHMARISHI MOHANJI ||
Edited & Published by – Testimonials Team, 14th December 2023
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