Empowered 5 – Invaluable grace

By Ranjana Balagopalan, India

At the start of the Empowered 5 programme that was held in India in December 2023, there was a recap of the Empowered series from 1-4. As I listened and took notes, I began to feel increasingly terrible on realising that, despite having attended every single Empowered programme from the start, I had barely incorporated any of my Guru’s teachings into my everyday life. I felt I was unworthy of being a follower of a great Master like Mohanji, and that I didn’t deserve to listen to his satsangs or be in the programme.

From the time I had signed up for the Empowered 5 programme in Mumbai, I had been eagerly waiting for it, for the chance to be in Mohanji’s presence, listen to him, and be in silence in a space that was filled with his energy. I think a part of me was expecting a repeat of my previous in-person experience of Empowered 5 that had happened in Zlatibor, Serbia. During that retreat, I had mainly experienced the feeling of being completely in the present moment and separated from the identity I had chosen in this lifetime. I had not gone through the painful surfacing of trauma and negative patterns that several other participants had faced. But also being aware that each retreat with Mohanji was completely unique, I thought I was prepared for anything that could happen. I was ridiculously wrong, of course.

Mohanji’s Empowered 1.0 came into my life as a huge divine blessing when I was struggling with anxiety issues, and it helped me gain immense stability and calmness, Empowered 2, 3, and 4 had built on that and helped me in so many different ways. Mohanji had taken a thousand steps towards me and done so much for me that it couldn’t be encapsulated in words. Following Mohanji’s guidance, I’d been trying to practice awareness, feel-the-feelings, and other techniques, but on that day in December, it hit me that my efforts so far had been too weak, and I was still fanatically sticking to my comfort zones and patterns and habits. I felt like a broken vessel that was incapable of containing Mohanji’s invaluable grace and guidance.

The next day, I was in the same miserable and pessimistic state, but Mohanji’s satsang helped me feel more stable and peaceful, and I felt increasingly better over the rest of the day as I sat in the highly energised space he had created for us. But for the initial few days, I was constantly experiencing desperation that I needed to make some progress in this Empowered programme, as if I was on an urgent deadline, and if I didn’t make any progress this time, that would be catastrophic for me. 

On most mornings, something – some unexpected incident or painful memories or old trauma that would resurface unexpectedly – would shake me up and make me feel terrible about myself. But then as I sat in the hall, I would be clearly shown the typical patterns, mindsets, and behaviour that had led to the mental agony I was experiencing, almost as if someone was charting it out for me neatly on a blackboard. And then the unnecessary emotions and negativity would drop off, and I would feel more stable and calm.

It wasn’t that I was able to meditate very well. 95% of my time during the programme was spent in just struggling against my mind, and continuously bringing it back from its meaningless trips. I would often become very frustrated with myself and would feel that I was the only one in the programme who was not able to focus and was wasting this precious opportunity. 


But there was some tiny improvement as the days went by, and I began to experience at least some moments of silence during the day. And on a couple of occasions, I had an unusual experience – the noises in my head seemed to be coming from outside of me. It felt as if I was sitting in my house, and there was a television or radio that was going on in some other room, and I was aware of the noise but I was not connected to it. It was the first time I had such experiences during meditation, and it was purely the result of Mohanji’s grace. Powerful Group Mai-Tri sessions were held for many days consecutively. I tried to follow the processes as much as I could, and I was aware that a lot of cleansing was happening at levels I could not even comprehend. 

Some of my most precious experiences during the retreat were of the occasions when Mohanji asked all of us to sit closer to him, and he said he would expand his consciousness so we could connect to him and feel his silence. As I tried to follow his guidelines, I felt absolute silence and stillness inside me, and though I wasn’t feeling emotional at all, tears rolled down my face. It was unforgettable.

Overall, the Empowered programme that happened in Mumbai in December 2023 was the most intense one I’d experienced until then. The mental churning I went through was painful, but each moment of it was very important for me to understand how deeply numerous patterns and habits were ingrained in me.

There’s one simple experience that encapsulates the impact of the Empowered series for me. 

Mohanji’s satsang did not happen on the second day of the retreat. The news upset me so much that I was in tears, but just by being in the meditation hall for a short time, I started to feel calm and centred. A couple of days later, the same thing happened – Mohanji’s satsang had to be cancelled because of unavoidable events (the next day, Mohanji gave us two satsangs to compensate). That morning, when I heard the news of the cancellation of the satsang, I was completely fine and stable. There was no sadness or disappointment or any kind of negative emotions, only a simple sense of acceptance of the events. This was the effect of just two-to-three days of the Empowered programme. 

There was a space of silence within me when I left the programme. With the return to everyday life, the usual mind-related dramas with patterns and habits did restart, but because of Mohanji’s divine and loving grace, there is still a small zone of silence within me that has been keeping me anchored.  

During the programme, in the meditation hall, there was a lovely painting of Lord Krishna dancing with the Gopis. The painting showed a version of him dancing with each Gopi. I felt it was a beautiful representation of the retreat. 

Each participant in the programme was absorbed in their own world during the retreat, perhaps struggling for most parts of it, sometimes touching the realm of silence within themselves, sometimes having breakthroughs, sometimes just feeling the deep weight of the past or existing circumstances and old traumas and unhappiness. However, none of us were alone for even a moment. Mohanji was with each one of us through each moment of this churning; helping us, guiding us, holding us. He was, is, and will continue to be the silence in the midst of the noises of the mind and the powerful golden light helping us navigate our way out of our self-created darknesses and guiding us to our true home. 

Thank you for everything, Mohanji. I offer my humble obeisance at your lotus feet.


Edited & Published by – Testimonials Team, 23rd May 2024


The views, opinions, and positions expressed by the authors and those providing comments on these blogs are theirs alone and do not necessarily reflect the views, opinions or positions of Mohanji, Mohanji Foundation, it’s members, employees or any other individual or entity associated with Mohanji or Mohanji Foundation. We make no representations as to accuracy, completeness, timeliness, suitability or validity of any information presented by individual authors and/or commenters on our blogs and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries or damages arising from its display or use.

We reserve the right to delete, edit, or alter in any manner we see fit blog entries or comments that we, in our sole discretion, deem to be obscene, offensive, defamatory, threatening, in violation of trademark, copyright or other laws, of an express commercial nature, or otherwise unacceptable.

Mohanji Testimonials team

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts
Scroll to Top