Deep Reverence, Acceptance & Silence

By Ruchika Gandhi

Kumbh Mela 2019!!

Little did I know about this auspicious event earlier! Heard its reference, when I had a chance to visit Badrinath in 2018, one of the most special pilgrimages I have ever done so far. The year 2018 had been the toughest phase of my life physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually too. I went through multiple health issues with extreme pain all over my body, no energy and no strength, along with deep depression. All this went on for many, many months. With so many health issues, I didn’t want to spoil the pilgrimage for others. So I was doubtful about making the trip to Badrinath. Hence I asked my sister to check if it was advisable to travel with this health condition up the hills and back last year. Mohanji answered to the call – “Let her come.” I just surrendered to the command completely and left for the pilgrimage. I felt that He knows what is best for me. That trip had been just overwhelming for me at all levels. No words can describe what it means to me and how it has changed me. I have got a new lease of life. It’s the same body but with new life. Master’s grace flows unconditionally, and this life is now for a higher purpose – to serve my beloved Master and His creation selflessly.

Visiting Kumbh had been a wish sitting inside me somewhere. Although I was not aware of its significance, I only knew that this was something big and special. My family left for Benaras (a divine abode) on Jan 11th 2019. My family had been to this holy city earlier but I missed the chance then. I heard about the city’s tales and impressions from my sister and mother and realised that I had missed something great owing to my health conditions. I never thought that Kumbh would happen so soon, that too in this lifetime itself. It was made possible only through Mohanji’s grace. Bags were packed and we were ready to board the flight at 8:00am. As soon as we landed and packed ourselves into a private taxi, we got to meet an amazing driver who narrated the significance of Kashi, Sarnath, Bhairav and Sankat Mochan (Hindu temples). While driving, he started to chant some mantras and I could resonate with those chants, although I did not know the literal meaning. I felt some connection with those strange mantras. The kind driver offered to take us to all the temples and try to cover as much as possible in one day. He didn’t care for anything, either food or his old age, but was totally committed. The first spot we visited was the Statue of the Standing Buddha in Sarnath in a beautiful garden.

Soon, we moved out of the garden and stood near a nariyal paani (coconut water) cart. I was busy looking at the small stalls all around while everyone else had their nariyal pani. Once they were done, I was offered one. While I was drinking, I noticed an old lady in tattered clothes along with her potli (a small pouch) near us. When I offered a tender coconut to her, I was told that she had been offered it already. When I asked the old woman if she would like to have some sugarcane juice, she spontaneously agreed with a smile. She took out the glass from her potli, filled it with what the vendor gave her and drank it gradually. We moved ahead and started walking. But I felt something inside and I turned to offer my pranaams to her. From a distance, she smiled and did pranaams too. In my heart I felt she was Mother Divine (Tara Maa) who had come in this form to bless us. It was a touching moment for me!

From there, we moved on to Sarnath temple, known as Lord Buddha’s abode (Vishnu Avatar), a sacred place where Lord Buddha’s ashes are kept. My sister Pooja asked the priest to bless the entire Gandhi family & Keta Shah family with those ashes. The priest humbly agreed and ashes were touched on our heads with some mantras. What a blessing it was! It was not part of our itinerary at all.

After a little break at the hotel, and lunch at 5:00pm, we moved on to have darshan of Lord Shiva at Kashi Vishwanath temple. The city was bustling with people everywhere as millions were visiting the place for the Kumbh. There were long queues to the main temple, but our driver made us stop in between, at a shop where we left our shoes and bags and we were advised to take care of our purses etc. Two people escorted us to the inside of the temple and we had a quick darshan amidst the crowd. In a split second, we were in and out of the temple. I felt I didn’t have proper darshan although I poured jal (water) on the Shivalinga. As we were moving out, we got to bow down peacefully at other deities of Ma Annapurna and Lord Hanuman. By the end of it, we were all tired physically as it was a long day. We had left Delhi at 6:30am and finally reached the hotel by 11:00pm. The driver was kind enough to take us to a place for a simple meal.

We decided to leave early the next day to avoid the crowd and long queues. Feeding animals, such as dogs, cows and birds is something that I love to do. At the back of my mind, this thought always lingers and I keep looking for an opportunity to feed them. I was thinking whether this would be possible during this trip.

The hotel arranged for two autos for Bhairav Nath temple the next morning (Jan 12th) and in 15 minutes we reached the temple. As we moved closer to the temple to buy a basket of flowers and oil, deep peace and calmness dawned on me. The Mohanji Gayatri and Om Sairam were playing continuously in my mind. I stepped into the temple and had a beautiful darshan. I felt something familiar stirring within, looking at the big eyes of Lord Bhairav Nath and other deities inside the temple. As we came out to return the empty basket, I noticed 3-4 dogs were wandering near the sweet shop. I think my Master heard my inner voice. But this time, it was unique as not only I but my sisters (including Keta Shah) also joined me in feeding the dogs. I felt so happy. I know it is all His doing; we are just mere instruments through whom the seva happens. This journey had one thing common from beginning to end – feeding dogs. It was a delight to find them and serve them with milk.

The next stop was at the Sankat Mochan (Hanumanji) temple. It is said that Hanumanji was seen on a tree here by a gardener. The beautiful idol inside the temple emerged on its own, not created by human beings. While we were in an auto rickshaw, my sister mentioned that Lahiri Mahasaya had lived in Benaras and we were hoping for a chance to visit the Master’s holy place that day. Miracle! Suddenly on the way, we found a big sign board with the name Lahiri Mahasaya Lane. It was a narrow lane; we were not sure how to locate the house. We just kept walking down the narrow lane. A Hanumanji temple was seen while we were searching for the house. I prayed deeply within for a clue to guide us to our beloved Master’s home when we came upon a man cleaning the surroundings. When we asked him about Lahiri Mahasaya’s home, he promptly replied that it was close by and offered to take us. God had sent us a guide! The great Master’s house remains locked throughout the year and it’s only opened on the auspicious Guru Purnima day. We bowed down in front of the door in deep reverence and gratefulness. We meditated there for a while and chanted. Our hearts were filled with utter joy and bliss.

Then our autos moved towards Sankat Mochan temple. We had a beautiful darshan of Hanumanji there. I prostrated on behalf of our beloved Deva Mohanji first and thanked Hanumanji for making us visit the temple. I prayed silently from within. A silent monkey was seen on top of the roof all alone, I went closer and offered a banana. He happily came down to take it. After the darshan, we fed more monkeys there in the temple premises. The whole environment was serene and blissful. Right opposite the Sankat Mochan temple, there was a Ram, Sita & Laxman temple where devotees were chanting. We joined in too.

Finally our drive to Allahabad began the next day (Jan 13th). Priti Rupee joined us at the hotel and we had to pick up Madhusudan from the airport. We all moved together in two different cars. The journey was tedious as it took us 5-6 hours to reach the city. The whole road was choked to the brim and the driver smartly drove through narrow lanes and inside the villages to reach the main road. The main road was jam packed too with big trucks, with no breathing space. The driver continued on and after few hours we reached a clear road with no congestion.

We finally arrived at the Kumbh! We were dropped off at the site where the structure was set up. It was so huge. Sitting inside the car, moving my head from left to right, I could feel the vastness of the set up and had a panaromic view of the whole architecture around it. My sister and mother mentioned that it was a barren land earlier and now it was a whole bustling city. Private vehicles were not allowed to go inside the Kumbh area, so we were dropped off at a point with our bags. I took my mom and aunty (Keta Shah’s mother) in a battery rickshaw, while all other members walked. Finally on locating the right spot, I got down and walked ahead to find Parmarth Niketan camp.

We had imagined a temporary set up with basic tents and amenities. But when we arrived, we were surprised to see the separate temporary quarters set up with all the basic facilities in place. Everyone settled in gradually into their rooms. Winter was at its peak there. I was eagerly looking forward to meeting our beloved Father Mohanji the next day. I woke up early (4:30am), completed Mai- Tri Healing chanting and meditated. I had a bath and breakfast and waited for instructions.

Finally we got to meet Mohanji! To be in the physical presence of a Master of His stature is a big blessing. He shared the holiness and significance of the Kumbh and said that without the blessings of our ancestors and Gods, and Guru’s grace, it won’t be possible for us to be there. He stressed a lot on ancestors’ blessings and their role. As Mohanji spoke to us, I felt each word entering into my being one by one, as if my soul had received something it had desired for many lifetimes.

I felt a deep peace and calmness all over again. Next morning (Jan 14th), we all got ready to visit the Hanumanji temple. The boat ride to the other side of the shore was amazing and soothing. I enjoyed feeding the birds on the way. The temple was crowded, but we still managed to have a beautiful darshan (here Hanumanji can be seen lying down in a resting position).

I got a chance to spend some moments with Dr. Wasir and got to hear about his Kailash pilgrimage experience. “Have no expectations while going there and no expectations after coming back” were his words. “You will experience a state of inner silence, no thoughts.” These words were powerful enough for anyone to realise the importance of this pilgrimage. Be in a state of total surrender and let the Master take charge of you.

I knew that my menses would start any time soon, which meant no dip in the holy sangam of the three rivers – Ganga, Yamuna & Saraswati. I surrendered completely at Mohanji’s lotus feet. The day for the dip arrived and I was down with my periods. Due to the extreme cold, I would wake up early and before sleeping I used to pray to enable me to wake up during the Brahma Muhurat (3-6am). I didn’t want to lose this precious time and space for chanting and meditation. Early hours were peaceful for both these things and I enjoyed doing it.

We all followed Mohanji for Shahi Snan day, attended the homa before the snan (dip) wherein Swami Chidanandji also joined us. The group chanting of Maha Mrityunja Mantra at the holy homa was sacred and divine. We took the blessings of the Lords and moved ahead for the holy snan in the boats.

Pilgrims participated in river cleaning before boarding the boats, a beautiful way to thank our beloved rivers for flowing seamlessly. The beauty of the scared rivers was felt strongly as millions took dips on the first day itself. From a distance, Keta Shah and I were watching Mohanji entering the sangam (where the 3 sacred rivers meet), bowing to them, to the sun and finally dipping into the rivers with a big smile. Wow! What a blessing to be a part of this divine sight. One by one, the other pilgrims also took dips.

Beautiful Abhishekam was done by all, by pouring the sacred river water on Mohanji and Mohanji did the same for each pilgrim. A sight to behold!! While all this was happening, I could feel the presence of a beautiful energy and of divine beings and ancestors, as if blessings were being showered upon all of us. Tears flowed and I wanted to just sink into this moment forever. As I closed my eyes, I felt as if it was Lord Shiva’s Abhishekam taking place.

It was touching to take a special dip in the boat itself (Mohanji’s drenched dhoti was rinsed on me and Keta Shah). It was a magical moment, totally out of the blue! A special blessing on us! I poured a little water on myself – in my name, that of my ancestors, Masters & Sai Deva. Words fall short to express the gratitude for such a blissful moment.

With cold waves and very little sun, it was a sight to see everyone drenched in their wet clothes, shivering but happy and filled with gratitude, peace and bliss. We all headed back to the ashram immediately after the snan.

Afternoon was well spent under the sun, remembering those moments and waiting for the next meeting with Mohanji. I was joined by Reena Di in the afternoon and we decided to do food seva. Without any hassles, food was arranged from outside the camp, through local vendors. We fed a cow and a few people with bread, pakoras and poori, choley. Tranquility and deep joy was felt, as the seva was happening through us. No wish was left unfulfilled on this holy land. All thoughts were heard and our Master was taking care of everything.

On Shahi Snan day, Mohanji had sprained His back. So we were asked to attend the Ganga aarati and satsang. After a satvic dinner, I was still hopeful of some news about Mohanji and for His darshan. Opportunity opened again and Mohanji gave us darshan despite being in deep pain (Mohanji explained that He took over the karma of someone who met with a severe car accident, and had responded to a child’s prayer). Mohanji is omnipresent, working for many in different dimensions. This is our beloved Master, filled with unconditional grace, love, peace and humility. Physical pain will not deter Him from answering any seeker’s prayers, meetings or spending time with true seekers. Mohanji operates from higher energy levels; He doesn’t need a physical body to talk to us. Connecting to His consciousness will open the gates to higher realms and eventual dissolution.

We could spend hours with Mohanji, but He was in deep pain. At the back of my mind, I had a wish somewhere to be able to serve my Master by pressing His feet. I had a chance to do this earlier in Badrinath. As the group settled into Mohanji‘s room and I got to sit next to His feet, I started massaging Mohanji’s feet and legs. I felt as if I was melting in His unconditional love, purity and vastness. It was another wish heard and fulfilled J. Out of pure love and purity in my heart, this was a little wish I had, for which my Master blessed me unconditionally and allowed it to happen during the satsang.

In my heart I know, to serve the Master is to serve creation in any form, in any capacity. Surrender fully at the Master’s lotus feet. He will take care of everything. You just keep walking, and leave the rest in the Master’s hand. It feels like I am truly living now and having a meaningful existence with complete acceptance and reverence! Gratitude at your lotus feet Mohanji…. Lots of love and only love.

It is not just about meditations…. It is not just about satsangs…. It is just about being in the moment and accepting and experiencing the way life happens. Thinking of the Master night and day and surrendering with utter devotion, love, faith and patience has become a way of life now.

Deep Love & Gratitude to Mohanji!

Thank you Madhu, Preeti Di & Rajesh for being around and taking care of everyone…

Mohanji shahi snan 2019 Prayagraj

||JAI BRAHMARISHI MOHANJI||

Disclaimer:
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

Guru Tujhe Salaam

— From A Devotee’s heart

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“Salute to you, oh my Guru” – is what this title above means. In all honesty, a salute,

a pranam, a mantra chant, a kiss on His feet or hand, is not enough to express our gratitude to our Guru, Para Brahma Mohanji!

Today, right now, we are sitting relaxed in our safety zones, in the warmth of our cosy homes, with our loved ones, thanking our stars to have Guru Mohanji in our lives. All this has been possible because He is out there, collecting all our problems, dangers, threats to our lives and taking on most of our baggage.

Our Guru, the true Avadhoota, the Avadhoota in jeans, is walking along the long, treacherous and dangerous path! Gathering all our baggage, putting them on His shoulders, He is walking on that path, so that we stay safe! Being inside the unconquerable fort, with the safe cordon of His protection, we are forgetting the truth of our existence, while He is guarding us from outside the fort!

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Yes. It is true. It is true that Mohanji, the Master is carrying the burden of all our baggage without bothering about His own discomfort or even threats to His life! Haven’t we seen this happening time and again? Or do we conveniently choose to ignore! Whether we realise, whether we care or not, He stays unperturbed and keeps doing what He has to do. So here is one more incident to add to our realisation of how our Guru does not hesitate even an iota to take on lots of garbage from us even if He has to face disaster.

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Rishikesh retreat was finishing. On the last day, on 21st September, Mohanji started a sacred Homa ceremony with deep respect and reverence in front of all. There were energies and divine signs of deities present at the Homa when they were invoked. Deities are representations of energies of a particular density and intensity. When invoked in a particular way, they come. Lord Dattatreya Himself was the principal deity helping with the sacred Homa.

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Everyone who attended this Homa ceremony offered dry coconuts without the outer shells. This is a symbol of bringing out all compelling negativities from them on to the coconuts. The coconuts becomes heavier as people download their baggage on to them. As a loyal servant of nature, the coconuts absorb all that is given. Then the Homa Agni (fire) burns the coconuts completely and dissolves the negativities. The Homa Agni is very sacred and powerful!

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Usually, as we all know, the dry coconut without its shell does not take much time to burn. Here, some coconuts did not burn for 15 hours, even after delivering almost two bags of stable Himalayan firewood into the fire! Finally, Indra Dev had to bring rain to calm Agni Dev! This simply signifies the amount of negativities that people might have been carrying unknowingly. The Homa and the burning of the coconuts have made each individual lighter.

However, all this takes a toll on Mohanji’s physical form. Some of the negativity goes through His body. That is why Mohanji has stopped doing Homas personally since 2016.

If this wasn’t enough, Mohanji had to come in front to fight with this invisible demon so that HIS FAMILY stays safe! Here is an account of what happened the next day (22nd September)!

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Mohanji was travelling to Badrinath in a car, along with Rajesh and Sanya. This is the car that was used all through the retreat and Mamu was constantly travelling in it. The driver of this car was a very efficient driver too. There were no complications in the car at all before this journey to Badrinath started.

Driving on the narrow roads in the high altitude hilly terrain, the driver stops the car at a pass on the side to give way to another vehicle. Exactly at that time, the axle of the car breaks. Following that, both the brakes fail too. Rajesh and Sanya went out of the car. Mohanji was still inside the car when it slides down to rest on one side of the road backed up by stones to still its movement. At that point, one tyre also comes out! This was more than enough to cause a disaster if the car was running on the road. With whatever speed, at that altitude, the car and its passengers would have immediately become history!

Everyone came out completely safe. Also, all the other vehicles including the bus and the rest of the cars carrying the entire group going to Badrinath had a smooth journey until Rudraprayag, where all halted for the night.

Can you imagine the reinforcements? Everyone was protected under the shield of Mohanji’s presence.

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Mohanji, Rajesh and Sanya continued their journey in another car brought by a driver named “Mohan” sometime later and reached Rudraprayag.

This incident reminds us the truth that when danger comes, Father comes out to face the danger Himself, keeping the children safe behind Him. We must not forget this at any moment. Every single breath that we are taking freely, relaxing, being joyful, is only because of our Guru, our Father, our Mother, Para Brahma Mohanji, is guarding us day and night, around the clock.

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So, is a salute, a pranam, a chant, a kiss on His feet, enough to show our gratitude? Let us ponder over this and keep reminding ourselves to feel our existence enjoying this incarnation in this beautiful world! We have taken a lot! May be it’s time to give back?

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“Help the helpless,” as in the words of our Master!

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Jai Brahmarishi Mohanji

Disclaimer:
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.

A Connection over Lifetimes

Salona Surjoo (Ladysmith, South Africa)

SAlona with Mohanji

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There are masters who come into this world purely for the purpose to help all beings. I personally, my family, people within our local Mohanji Ladysmith centre, within the country and globally, have had many beautiful, divine experiences with Brahmarishi Mohanji. Some may argue or question these connections and experiences. And as adults, we cannot make people feel the way we do or understand the path we have taken. But, the experiences and love shared between a master and an innocent baby, can certainly not be taken for granted. Babies are pure souls who have the capability to feel energies around them. They are playful and giggle at divinity and divine people, and are uncomfortable when subjected to negativity. Many may question the path, experiences and spiritual choices that followers have taken, but there is no doubt that when a baby expresses love and happiness for the same reason, it is definitely more than just ideas conceived by the human mind.

 “I fulfill desires”, Brahmarishi Mohanji often says.

Those are not just mere words, but life experiences that I have come to experience even before meeting my Guru.

I have always loved babies. Their purity, innocence, and ability to express happiness at any moment brings a soothing sense of love and joy to my heart. I have been yearning to hold a baby close to my heart, to feel a soft tiny body in my arms and to play with tiny finger and toes. This feeling grew rapidly over the past years until the desire to cuddle with an infant grew so much that I found myself in tears. I had actually held a teddy bear close to my heart, eyes filled with tears and looked at a photo of Mohanji and said, “Please send a baby that I can play with.” Seconds later I had withdrawn from the teddy, dried my tears and asked myself, “Guru is the sun that lights a million suns.  How can I ask him for such a wish?” Perhaps it was the ego or the mind over analyzing the wish, but regardless of what it was, Mohanji answered…

A little baby was born in the same month that I had made my wish.  One who I would soon meet after some months. Magnificent is the timing of Guru!

Before getting into how Mohanji had fulfilled my wish to play with a baby, I would like to share with you baby Ariv’s story…

His smile after his healing and Devi Kavacham

After 14 years of endless fasts, prayers, and wishes, a beautiful baby boy was born to Jayshree and Ashil Mangal in Ladysmith, South Africa. This bundle of joy came into the world, bright, bubbly and in perfect health on the sunny morning of 23rd February 2017. A coincidence that baby Ariv Mangal was born on Brahmarishi Mohanji’s birthday? This special date was unknown to his parents as they were yet to meet us and hear about Mohanji until a few months later, but it was certainly not a coincidence that they shared the same birthday; as Ariv showed strong connections to Mohanji from a very early age.

Divine will – Meeting Ariv

Ariv and his parents moved next door in June 2017. Again, it was no coincidence that the place they had chosen to live for the next 6 months, was in fact next to a home where Mohanji was so greatly loved –  our home. My parents head the Mohanji Ladysmith Centre, His name is taken daily in our home, and Mohanji’s pictures are carefully place all over the house. Soon baby Ariv who was only four months old at the time was in and out of our home.

He was still so tiny, only being able to move his tiny hands and feet, and turn his head. Soon we realised that he used to turn his head in the direction of Mohanji’s photos in the lounge. And at first, I brushed it off. But this became more visible when we carried him upright and he would bobble his tiny head in the direction of Mohanji’s photo and give a big smile. At this age, Ariv should hardly smile. In fact, I used to ‘work hard’ to make him smile or laugh (the joy of hearing a baby laugh is so blissful). But just the sight of Mohanji’s photo brought a smile to his face. I had kept remembering the wish I had made in earlier months, and a few months later Guru had sent this cutest bundle of joy that I get to play with, feed and see too!

Not long after meeting him and his parents, things worked out for me and my sister to join the Badrinath Yatra in 2017. One day I was carrying baby Ariv and we were talking about the Badrinath trip. Upon hearing the name ‘Badrinath’,  Ariv gave us a huge smile and baby giggle. It was so funny that we started calling him Badrinath. Just before the trip, while Sholane and I were still in Ladysmith, Ariv was playing in the room with my father. He started laughing and called us to see what Ariv was up to. The baby was still just four-months-old at this time. When we got to the room, we see that my father was carrying Ariv next to a photo of Brahmarishi Mohanji in their room and Ariv was leaning forward to kiss Mohanji’s photo.

Baby Ariv goes to touch, kiss and hug Mohanji's photo (2)

My father had said that while carrying him, Ariv pointed to the photo and when he took the baby near it, he leaned forward to kiss it, and touch Mohanji’s hand in the photo.

Baby’s special gift

We were all so touched and I said I will definitely tell  Mohanji this when I meet Him in Badrinath. While in Badrinath, Sholane and I were shopping for little gifts to give people back home as a token from the beautiful town of Badrinath. While shopping we spotted a cute baby bangle which we bought for Ariv. Soon after we were given the opportunity to speak to Mohanji. I had conveyed baby Ariv’s story to Mohanji, showed Him Ariv’s photo and also gave Him the bangle to bless.

Mohanji said, “Look at his eyes, we have been connected from many births,”

He then added, “I give him grace and he knows it, that is why he does that.” I smiled and conveyed the message to his mum as soon as possible.

It then hit me. Ariv who was then just 6-months-old, was born on our Guru’s birthday, attracted to staying near a family who was connected to Mohanji, and received a gift from Badrinath which was blessed by Brahmarishi Mohanji himself, AND Mohanji had said that they were already connected from the past! He was definitely no ordinary shishu (Hindi for an infant).

 The Badrinath team gifted all of us a picture of the group with Mohanji, in front of the Badrinarayan Temple. I had stuck this photo on the fridge in the kitchen as the lounge was already filled with Mohanji’s pictures. My brother, Sayijal had taken notice that sometimes while carrying Ariv, he would squeal (for no apparent reason known to adults), and when Sayijal had walked with him near that specific photo, he would just stop squealing and stare at the photo. Again, we found this cute but hilarious. Ariv’s baby tricks were becoming cuter and funnier each day.

His first words

One evening I was carrying Ariv and trying to get him to sleep, while my mum was praying and reciting the Hanuman Chalisa. He was comfortable in my arms but didn’t want to sleep. So I took him to see my mum praying as I thought he may fall off to sleep. What happened next completely shocked us both. My mum was almost at the end of the Hanuman Chalisa when I took him to see her. She was at the concluding part – Pawan Suta Hanuman… And at the EXACT same time, Ariv in his baby voice said “Ki Jai”. I was shocked, so was my mum. She concluded her prayer and turned around with the biggest smile and repeated his words, “Ki Jai! Baby said Ki Jai!” It was then I realised that I was not dreaming. She heard him utter the same words at the exact same time. He was still very small and had not even uttered anything else like Mama, Papa, nothing. So, Ariv’s first words were literally, “Ki Jai”. We were so shocked but started to piece together that Ariv’s connection to Baba is indeed very deep, beyond what we can even understand or realise.

Repeating the divine name

As he was growing up and was able to sit and play with his toys (and random household items) he would continuously repeat the word, “Ithi”. He would repeat the word when smiling and playing or eating, and he would repeat it when crying or squealing to change his clothes. We could not understand why he is continuously repeating the same word and thought it was just a baby word or something. Soon I realized that Lord Shiva’s 652nd name in the Shiva Sahasaranaam is “Ityai” which means, “the Lord is Lakshmi” or auspiciousness. I was so happy to think that Ariv is repeatedly calling out to Shiva.

Celebrating two beautiful birthdays

I had moved back to Pretoria in January 2018 with Sholane, and we were driving home on 23rd February to celebrate Mohanji’s birthday with everyone at the Mohanji Centre and celebrate Ariv’s first birthday.

We commenced with the formalities, chanting and bhajans, Ariv and his parents were also present and he celebrated his birthday by cutting a vegan cake, next to Mohanji’s photo at the Ladysmith Centre. He was not interested in the cake, but rather, he sat down on the cushion we keep for Mohanji’s feet and took one of the fruit Prasad to eat. Indeed a cute sight.

Choosing to eat a fruit prasad while sitting on Mohanji's foot cushion  during his Mai-Tri healing

Matching the puzzle pieces 

Ariv was uncomfortable and crying a lot and our hearts felt sore to hear his soft baby cries. Wishing there was something more we could do to stop it or make him happy again. I went to the lamp to pray while carrying him and got a thought to play the Devi Kavacham. At that very moment, before I expressed my thought, Sholane said, “Play the Devi Kavacham it will help soothe him.”  I gave him to Sholane to carry while we all sat to meditate on the Kavacham. Ariv was still very crabby. As soon as Mohanji’s voice came on and the baby heard it, his face changed completely. I will try my best to describe this visually…

He gasped, his eyes changed from fear to happiness, he turned his head, (jumping over Sholane’s shoulder) all the way to look at where the music was coming from, he looked directly at the music box and said, “Haaawwh, Ithi!”  We then realized that Ithi that baby plays with, complains to and just loves so dearly is, in fact, Brahmarishi Mohanji. I then remembered Mohanji’s words in Badrinath, “I give him grace, and he knows it.”

We meditated on the Devi Kavacham 3 times. Ariv was still crabby but with each time we repeated it, he cried less and less and by the end, he was back to his bubbly happy, playful self.

Reading the Gita

Baby Krishna

That afternoon, we took him to my grandparents home, where he played with everyone as normal. I had taken him into my grandparents’ room, where he kept pointing to papers in the room. Repeating the word, ‘that’. He very clearly says the words, ‘this, that and there’. I pointed to a few things which he didn’t want, but when I pointed to a copy of the Bhagavad Gita that my grandmother reads, he got happy and stretched his arms to hold it.

Kissing Mohanji’s photo

Sholane and I travel back and forth from Pretoria to Ladysmith so we only see Ariv whenever we are home. On one of the trips home, Ariv had got a hold of Mohanji’s picture (the same one he used to turn his head to stare at when he was a baby). And he pulled it to his face to kiss it. He looked at the photo of Mohanji, directly into His eyes, and kissed Him, repeatedly saying, “Baaa”. When we ask Ariv, where is Ithi? He gives a huge smile, points to Mohanji’s photo on the wall at home and says, “Thereee”.

Ariv on Diwali as baby Krsna Ariv doing aarti with my mumAriv with my mum Shireen Surjoo   Ariv met Swami Bhaktananda at the Maha Sudarshan Chakra Homa in Ladysmith

I personally feel that the way a baby, uncontaminated by this material world, free from doubt, worry and skepticism, can so openly and undoubtedly connect with a master such as Mohanji, speaks volumes of the stature of such a Guru as well as the purity of such a baby. Ariv has not yet met Mohanji in the physical form and according to us, Ariv has only seen Mohanji’s pictures in our home, ‘unknowing’ to the mind, that Mohanji is a Guru or spiritual person. Yet, Ariv has connected so strongly to Him, recognizing Mohanji’s voice in the Devi Kavacham, to calling out to his ‘Ithi’ in happiness and sorrow.

May we all, including myself, be able to let go of the contamination created by society and become as free and delightful as a little baby, to be able to recognize and connect with the Divine without doubt and negative thinking.

Thank you, Father, Gurudev, and Friend, for giving me this beautiful opportunity to witness this divine love between you and baby Ariv and for the ability to write about it and inspire all who read it.

Love and gratitude for being able to write this beautiful, divine story between an innocent baby and a loving Master. And also being able to experience the joy of playing with a baby who is not only a joy but one who is so deeply connected to my Guru.

Mohanji with children and as a child

Just as baby Ariv, all babies are attracted to Mohanji every time they come in the proximity of Mohanji. Children love Mohanji. To see the instant bonding that gets created between Mohanji and the babies/children is to watch the divine Leela.

All children are the true reflection of Divine!  We leave you to cherish the divinity in this childhood photo of Mohanji.

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Mohanji in his childhood

 

||JAI BRAHMARISHI MOHANJI||

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