(Trip to Tapovan with Mohanji – experiences of Dr. Deepali)
Ammu’s death anniversary (Shraddh)
It was my first time to witness this ritual of thanksgiving to the ancestors. Astral blessings are a must in everyone’s life. But I only knew it theoretically till I attended this ritual with Mohanji. Mohanji belongs to Bharadwaja Gotra in this life. With the Priest’s powerful chanting of mantras, the reverence and gratitude with which Mohanji invoked the presence and blessings of Ammu as well as all the ancestors in his (Bharadwaja) Gotra, and most importantly, of Ganga Putra Bhishma Pitamaha, indeed melted my heart. Bhishma Pitamaha, son of Ma Ganga, was unmarried. Since Bhishma of Mahabharatha did not have a son, who would perform this post death ritual for him? So, all those who do shradh (rituals associated with the death anniversary of their beloveds) in Ganges, start with Bhishma, with the belief that we are all his grand children. The ritual is rather elaborate and consists of prayers of gratitude to Sun, all the Gods and Deities, Fore fathers, Saints and, in Mohanji’s case, Ammu. Mohanji did it meticulously with full concentration, as the photos speak.
Lord Dattatraya, who is the Adi Guru with whom a great tradition of powerful incarnations such as Shirdi Sai Baba, Sathya Sai Baba, Gajanan Maharaj, Narasimha Saraswati and Swami Samarth of Akkalkot began, meditated in Tapovan. That place is currently within the Shivananda ashram hill enclave. We went to Lord Dattatraya’s temple. It was wonderful to see Mohanji bowing down and prostrating to the highest Guru of the tradition with complete surrender and gratitude. That offering of gratitude came from his being. It had complete faith and surrender. He said: ” We must have total and complete gratitude and surrender to all the Masters who are living as well as “non-living” in the physical realm. Remember, in the absolute sense, all of us are one with every Master as well as God.” We prayed at the Dattatreya Mandir and the adjacent Devi Mandir.We could not go to the cave (there is a way to go to the cave where Lord meditated, but presently it is blocked for public).
I must have visited Datta Mandir many times till today, but now I feel those were superficial visits to the temples. Visiting with Mohanji, and with understanding of the tradition and Masters, had a lot more meaning into it. It was so pleasant to see my Guru surrendering to the highest Guru with deep meaning. I just questioned myself… who am I to boast about myself? I am such a negligible entity who cannot even comprehend the surrounding and happening at the conscious or subconscious level.
We came to the Samadhi of Saint Shivananda. He was one of the great saints that ever walked on earth. He was part of the trinity of great saints of this area in early 1900s. The others were Purushottamanand Maharaj of Vashishtha Cave and Tapovan Maharaj who was a wandering monk. Shivananda Samadhi was empty and none was there except me and Mohanji. Mohanji said that it is very rare. We could go around the samadhi and prostrate without any hindrance. Usually, this is not possible because either some of the swamis will be meditating, or they would be doing poojas, which happened soon after we came out of the samadhi sthan.
It was a great experience. I felt as if I am prostrating at Sai Samadhi in Shirdi – great vibrations were felt clearly. Indeed, Shivananda is a great saint. Sathya Sai Baba had come and stayed in this ashram twice – first time when Swami Shivananda was in his body, and the second time after his maha samadhi. After praying at Sivananda Samadhi, we took guidance from an ashramite to locate the abode of Swami Govindananda, who is in charge of Shivananda’s Library.
He welcomed us with open arms, as if he was waiting for us. As soon as we sat down, he gave Mohanji a picture of Shirdi Sai. Tejus of Swami Govindananda was unmistakable. Mohanji gave him his spiritual card in which his third eye was clearly visible. Swamiji looked intently at the card for sometime, totally ignorant about the activities or people around him, and at one point exclaimed “Mohan, you are residing in Sai Baba’s third eye!!!”.
These powerful words made me enter into contemplation, with deep awe and gratitude… It was a great feeling. Mohanji said: “Swamiji and I do not exchange many words. But each year we meet, those words that are exchanged carry a deep meaning and have a profound effect. After Ammu left the body and I first came to Tapovan, it was Swami Govindananda who said: “Do something for the children of Mother Earth, and you will have eternal peace.” It was him who inspired or triggered the thought in me to start the Ammucare Foundation…”
Later, during discussions, Swami Govindananda said that Shivananda Samadhi has same vibrations of Shirdi Sai Samadhi!!! I reflected back on my experience. It was indeed a beautiful demonstration of the fact that Masters/Divine are all pervasive. I remembered what Mohanji always says, “In absolute sense, all Masters are one and we are one with them.” I felt our conscious human mind is so conditioned to separate things, identify them individually and create differences and duality.
We chatted for sometime and left for Vanamali Ashram by foot. Even though it was an uphill climb, I never felt tired…
Mataji’s Ashram and Experience of Vishnu consciousness
Vanamali Mataji has a routine of Krishna pooja and arati in the morning and evening. On one morning, during Pooja, I was sitting behind Mohanji, who was seated behind Mataji. Suddenly, Mohanji asked me to close my eyes and keep my hand on his right shoulder and feel. His shoulder had the lull of a deep ocean, majestic and tranquil.I felt myself completely shifted to a new realm. There was a soothing wave-like movement, as if I am floating over a calm and serene ocean. I could feel the gentle, synchronous, up-down waves which are going beyond horizons. These waves were very tranquil and compassionate. This state is truly inexplainable. I had seen so many of expressions of Mohanji by now, that, as usual… I got confused.
Later He said, “This is Vishnu’s realm. Lord Vishnu rests on Ananta (infinity) the snake, in the ocean of milk and the waves gently move him like a cradle as He remains in Yoga Nidra (yogic sleep). These are subtle waves of the cosmos. Vishnu is tranquil because He is the Lord of Maintenance. These waves also depict my inner rhythm. As I rest on existence, this is my rhythm. Till now, you only perceived my dynamic Shiva consciousness.This is another dimension that I carry. Shiva and Vishnu are two aspects of Parabrahma. Individually, Shiva is Parabrahma and Vishnu is Parabrahma. Collectively, they are one. Everything is Parabrahma.”
A few seconds later, Mataji and Mohanji started chanting Vishnu Sahasranam. Feeling Vishnu consciousness and then listening to Vishnu Sahasranam in Mohanji’s deep voice, which comes from his being, threw me into deep meditation, giving me entirely different experience than before. It was more tranquil and dissolving. He had shifted into Vishnu consciousness before chanting the Sahasranam, and thus did not need to refer to any books!
I asked him, ‘When do you, or, did you ever recite all these mantras and shlokas?’ Witnessing his busy schedule in Muscat, I wondered when he gets the time!!!. Mohanji said that he has not read or mastered any scriptures, Vedas or Upanishads. Knowledge flows through him when he needs it, as per the Divine will. He said: “I am an empty pot. I reflect what fills into me, time after time. I do not exist. I do not compare nor do I compete. I do not borrow or imitate. I have nothing. I am an embodiment of total emptiness, if you can understand or comprehend that. I exist because you do, as my existence is relative. Great Masters have walked this earth time after time. I bow to all of them. I surrender myself to all of them”.
Indeed, the Lord Vishnu experience was completely and totally different from Shiva consciousness. I have always seen Mohanji in dynamic mode of operations in Muscat, juggling between office works and meeting people in the evening or conducting meditation and answering questions. I have hardly seen him sitting quiet. During meditation he appears to be sitting quiet but, in reality, he is extremely dynamic within. He has given that experience to me once. He showed me the other lokas (worlds) where he operates too. It was indeed an amazing experience which opened my eyes to Mohanji’s alternative dimensions and relevance of existence. No wonder people far away, and even those who have never met Mohanji, are getting tangible experiences of his presence, time and again! I have seen many testimonials from many people to this effect. Mohanji always says: “Faith is the key. It unlocks the doors of heart. It removes all blockages. Grace flows uninterruptedly. Miracles happen.”
I have experienced similar tranquil ocean waves once before, during our meditation in Mohanji’s presence on the Maha Samadhi anniversary of Bhagavan Nityananda of Ganesh Puri.. Seeing and feeling Lord Vishnu peacefully resting on Ananta… Anantashayana – does it not throw us instantly into deep peace and tranquility too? Do we not become completely withdrawn from external? Only grace can take us to this experience, no amount of practice can take us there. As Mohanji said, “Doing-ness must automatically end and Being-ness must happen. All kinds of thoughts, words and actions are expressions of doing-ness. Even all kinds of practices amount to doing-ness. They all must drop by themselves, as only through extreme doing-ness can we achieve non-doingness. We cannot hurry through it. Things fall off at their own appointed time. Surrender with faith to your chosen practice. Expecting results is also doing-ness. Do not expect anything. Just BE. Grace will flow and take you to the highest. Nobody can give enlightenment. It has to happen to you. You can prepare the streets and your house for the King to arrive. You can do nothing more than that. King will arrive at the appointed time. Do not wait. Just Be. Everything will fall in place.”
Shaktipat at Vanamali ashram
Santoshi is a lady working at Mataji’s ashram. Mataji once just mentioned that, she is very sick and often does not come for work. She had become thin too. Mataji asked Mohanji to do something. I asked for her to come to ashram with her medical reports. She had a few abscess on her body and was extremely fatigued. Seeing reports I thought she may require long term treatment to fully recover. Mohanji gave her Shaktipat. After Shaktipat she felt a bit dizzy and lost. She cried a lot and hurried home. This was the day of Krishna-Janma, birth day of The Lord Krishna. I was a bit worried looking at her condition, but had full faith in Mohanji. Later she came for evening arati of Krishna and gave us a big surprise as she looked of being happy and bubbly. She conveyed shyly that she feels very light!
Mohanji also gave Shaktipat to Mataji. That sight was so touching, son giving Shaktipat to his spiritual mother. Mataji experienced both Shiva and Vishnu consciousness! She said, “This was the deepest experience indeed”. What a subtle appreciation. All of us were filled with deep love and joy.
Different Expressions of Mohanji
I saw many forms and expressions of Mohanji in the last few months. His body configuration changes drastically and very often. Sometimes he walked like Shirdi Sai Baba, slightly limping like an old man, but I also witnessed his Shaivic superfast 5th dimension walk on Ram Jhula, casual walk with haversack on his back, managerial walk in his office… – all are so different and unique.
Sometimes he had eyes of Jesus and many times, expressions of Baba. Many times he looked like Jesus, especially in his photos from Serbia. Few times he appeared like Bhagavan Nityanada. His feet changed from soft pink feet of Krishna to hard rough ones like Baba. He expands and contracts in no time. He is all Masters. He is not only spontaneous, but extremely unassuming too.
Unassumingness is his shield. It distracts people as they expect to see a saint and yet see an ordinary man. He does all sorts of things to distract people, which I have seen many times, especially recently with Abhishek. But, his love is unmistakable… Before our journey, when the schedule was being made, he mentioned “Who ever is travelling with me should get all the privileges that I receive. I should not be treated differently. All people are expressions of myself, irrespective of their differences such as gender and species.”
Mr. Dipak Haksar has a beautiful altar at his home, with photos of all Masters that came into his life. On 29th August, in his house, I had a profound mystical experience and saw expressions/features of many of those Masters in Mohanji, all at one time! I always feel that Mohanji is just an illussion. He probably does not exist. His expressions are not really his. He expresses various Masters as per the need of the moment and his body changes accordingly, as to who operates through his body at that time.
One day he made me feel his spine from the distance of 2-3 feet! Warm contours of spine were so clear at that distance. My medical mind was completely shattered. He easily changed between dynamic energetic Shaivic expressions, to smooth tranquil compassionate Vishnu expression.
Furthermore, many of us have experienced various beautiful celestial fragrances around him – lavender, vibhuti, sandal wood etc. Fragrance changes with each situation. Fragrance that is derived from his body, also changes according to the people who come in front of him. He caters individually. His constitution shifts according to his visitor. Celestial fragrance that we felt during Shaktipat at ITC Maurya was different than the fragrance that we experienced when he was writing Babaji blogs. (at that time, his body changed so much that he was looking like a boy!!!)
I have seen him expressing extreme compassion and extreme anger for seemingly insignificant matters. I now realize that through his expression of anger, something is cleared, changed or moved from the receiver or visitor. He scolded one lady during the recent class. When his Shaivic energy entered her through his scolding, the next day, she developed fever. Mohanji said “No problem. She will be alright in 3 days. She had a software change. Things would be different in her life.” His anger never depresses a person instead it energizes the person. Though this lady had a fever, she also was active a lot! A strange combination!
Sometimes he had Lord Ganesha on his forehead and at many times we saw AUM and trident .. and now a shining purple Third eye in the Vashishtha cave!
I have heard him chanting Marathi arati and Sanskrit shlokas. He has never learned Marathi (at least not in this life!) – and most definitely, I cannot forget my experience of Mohanji recording BTW meditation in Hindi, which he never spoke so fluently. As mentioned before, he has never learnt any scriptures. He hardly reads any books. He is truly spontaneous. Knowledge flows through him effortlessly and timely.
Along with these different divine expressions, I have also seen his pure dharmic expressions – as a son, father, husband, friend or Guru. I have seen him working endlessly in the office, with full responsibility. He is an employee too! I have also witnessed his reverence, gratitude and surrender towards higher Masters, his senior spiritual Gurus and colleagues. It is pleasant to see him prostrating with head and heart in one line flat on the ground. I have seen a patient Guru in him. I have noticed the unconditional love towards all those who attend and do not attend the meditation. He melts when he sees animals. I saw him operating effortlessly in the five star hotel and also in an Himalayan ashram…. complete contrast in environment, yet, he is as fluent as ever. He is the same, where ever he is. He is the same to everyone, irrespective of the status of the person who comes to meet him. He discriminates between none. His powerful existence remains unchanged in all situations of terrestrial dualities.
These are all examples of his different plane of operation and existence.
He once said, “ Mohan’s body, per se, has no meaning. You have seen expressions of many Masters and Gurus through this body – through physical expressions or communications. I am all Masters or I am no Master. Take it as you like. Essentially, I am an ordinary man, an empty pot. This body changes but the expressions are real. The body is terrestrial and gross, but expressions are real and imperishable. This is the Path of Pathlessness.”
Furthermore, his dharmic expressions have given different dimension to the understanding of karma to me. Our karma may get over. We may be able to exhaust our karmas, but dharma will continue. Fulfilling dharma is an endless process which may be more difficult too. For all of us …Let karma and dharma happen together and later let it be only dharma flowing through each soul without having any emotional afflictions.
In his words, “Karma is individualistic while dharma is universal. They co-exist. Every being is expressing both simultaneously, but differentiations blur because of the mind factor which creates do-ership. One example of we being a dharmic being is that we may be causing destruction of many beings like ants, unknowingly, when we move around. There are numerous micro beings that meet their physical death when we breathe. We have no control over this. This is dharmic existence. When we breathe out, trees breathe in the same air. Likewise what the trees breathe out, we breathe in, this is also dharmic co-existence. Karma ends when the body ends. Dharma continues, eternally”.
He also said: “Shiva is not Tandava and Tandava is not Shiva. Tandava is just an expression of the infinity called Shiva. When beingness expresses doingness, we call it movement, dance or tandava.We can understand the entity only through its expressions. You can only see our soul through our movements, such as thought, word or action. Soul is the only real entity in our system. But, we can see only the expressions, which the soul animates. We fail to see the soul behind our expressions and call the temporary expressions as permanent. When we learn/realize the hard way that all expressions are temporary, we lose hope in ourselves and our judgments. We fall into depression. So, these expressions could be temporary but the entity remains as incomprehensible as always.”
Normal human being’s expressions have patterns and constitution but Mohanji’s expressions are original, dynamic, pattern-less, and cannot be framed or predicted. Each frame has a validity, duration and purpose. When we try to catch him in any frame, he destroys it.
I have written the truth. Take what you want/what you can…
With complete surrender at His feet,
With love and gratitude to all readers, Deepali