This article was published in "Destination Worldwide", a tourism and travel magazine (January 2011 issue). Thanks to Editor Anju Jain for picking it up.
We offer gratitude to our Guru with whose blessings we were able to spend a few days at this divine place.
This is my third visit to Kanhangad. The first visit happened when i had just desired to go there and out of nowhere a few other seekers wrote to men if i am interested to join them. The second visit was a tour filled with lots of mystery and experiences. (read all visits) As these were published on this blog, many seekers wished for a trip. And thus, my third visit here. The count does not matter but i remember it well because every trip has brought something new though all of those experiences i have not put up in those articles. The wonderful peace and bliss one gets to experience is unexplainable. This makes Kanhangad and Guruvan a beautiful place to visit, again and again, not as a tour but a place to do sadhana. Another divine place where Baba Nityananda spent his last years is at Ganeshpuri. That is a place i have written only about my first visit.
Note: All experiences shared here are in the joy of sharing and to let know the divine powers here if connected to. All here are expressions are written with conviction by the ones who experienced it and it is totally up to the discretion of the reader. Only experiences that were felt should be shared are shared here by all. Nothing can happen without His wish.
My last trip had something mysteriously incomplete and this trip it was completed, which is mentioned at the end of the article.
So, this trip, there were initially 19 who were interested but by the day of travel it came down to 10, which were for genuine reasons of the seekers. Some preferred to go earlier than our planned dates and some later. Even though going in groups may be fun and good company, i would always suggest going together yet being alone :) for that only fetches the best results of any spiritual tours. Places like Ganeshpuri and Kanhangad are places where you can only sit without doing anything and still feel connected and keep absorbing those energies. The best of places to silently connect and just BE THERE.
The 10 people in the group were from different places but i do admire the enthusiasm and love they have for Baba. From Bangalore - Sujatha aunty, Ravi, Geetu, Vidya, Rahul and Akash. From Singapore - Shabnam. From Mangalore - Arjun and Vishwanath uncle. Later we met a seeker from Bangalore Ravi Kiran who had come earlier a few days earlier and left after coming till Guruvan with us.
I reached Uncle's house in Mangalore on Jan 2nd and after getting fresh me and uncle left for the railway station and brought tickets for the others, who had arrived early and had checked in a hotel. They all went in the train to Kanhangad and me, Uncle with me and Arjun drove. It takes about 2 hours by road but 1:30 hour by train. So by the time we reached they had already reached. Rooms were quickly given to us and we all freshened up and moved around the ashram, bhandara and caves just to wait for lunch time as we planned to leave for Guruvan the same day itself and spend time till evening there. Till then, we briefly strolled in the caves with out torches and cell lights. We then all settled down in the cave where Bade Baba himself used to sit. It is a cave huge enough to accommodate all of us. In the darkness, we sat chanting "Om Namo Bhagwathe Nityanandaya" and then spent some time in silence there. The energies are wonderful here. Then we came out and had lunch. By this time Jagdish arrived with his van and soon we set out for Guruvan.
Since it is only about 5 kms we were able to reach quickly. This time also Jagdish's father (the 85-year-young swami mentioned in the prior article) came and we were happy to have his presence. Swami Vidyananda who looked after the Guruvan was pleased to see us. By now he was quite familiar with us. i have written about him in the previous article but this time we could take snaps with him.
We went into all those places, the papanashini ganga, where everyone drank this water and washed themselves. Vidya was busy giving unconditional love to the dog of Swamiji and it also reciprocated equally well. You can see it here in their eyes. Then we moved around other places in here and moved into the cave where Bade Baba meditated and holy siddhas are still believed to be in tapas there.
Last time i had mentioned about this cave but there were no enough pics. This time we did more exploring and went deeper into the very narrow cave. The above pic is the entrance of the cave.
A shot from just the a few steps into the entrance. There is water in this cave at all times and is always wet.
A curve to the right. There is no light further from here and is totally dark.
Akash went further in with the torch. This is the first time i have ever come this deep. As it deepened, the cave become more narrow to the extent that one could only sleep and crawl. We didn't do that :) We went to the extent only till it was comfortable to sit and crawl.
On the right this is how narrow the further way in was.... The shining thing is a frog's eyes.. watching our every move.
One the left this is the only further entrance. It is a mystery about the further extent of this cave. It is obvious that one can only go further literally crawling. This goes and connects to a very huge spacious cave.
Since there is water all the time in here, it is very slippery too. Thanks Akash for getting us in till here :)
A cute frog showed up.
...... and soon there were many frogs all around watching us. They did not seem frightened by our presence nor by the flash of the camera - it felt like a welcome from them. God knows who they were :)
Then we came out and meditated for a while around the ashtasiddhi lingas. These lingas were made by Bade Baba himself after his tapas here. These signify the ashta siddhis (8 siddhis).
On meeting Swami Vidyananda, he invited us to sit in the rooms and we did that. He humbly came and asked if he can make tea, to which i declined because i know with what difficulty he makes it due to lack of resources there, but we were very thankful for his kindness. He is here in Guruvan since he was 9 years old and now he is 42. Does he look like that? :)
Two were missing in earlier pic. Extreme left Rahul and second from right Shabnam
We spent some time in the room talking and then we started making our way down this hill so that we could climb from the foot of the Guruvan hill to the top. Me, uncle and Ravi climbed halfway and waited for the rest who had gone in the van and brought back some 'Pazam pori' which is a Kerala delicacy and some sweets and snacks.
Finally, we all settled down in the dry grass amongst the rocks at a place from where we could see the sun and also an elevated sea level far away.
The suns sets behind the sea that can be see glimmering in the picture on the left. That shine is actually the sea and it is even higher than the top of this hill because the sea level is higher at this place.
The beej mantra was played and all did MritSanjeevani. It was wonderful. Doing sadhana out in the open being in nature is sure different.
By the time we opened our eyes, the sun had set and no pics of sunset could be taken; it's a very beautiful scene from here. We slowly walked our way down the hill.
Sure you must be spotting something in these two photos.... all loaded with Sanjeevani :)
One of the best snaps taken, but smiles vanished.. this is what happens when you ask to pose for a pic rather than clicking naturally :)
Next morning, our second day, we all attended the Ganapathi Homam that we had arranged with the priest the previous day.
The Nityananda Temple above the caves at 5 a.m.
The room next to the temple where the homams are done
The divine powerful panchaloha idol of Bade Baba
Baba is in the abhaya (fearless) mudra. Shri. Gopalakrishnaji (Author of "The Endless One") had explained it to me about this mudra and that this form of Baba should be installed in one's heart)
A small idol of Baba and at His feet is the Golden Book of Sujatha aunty :)
A view from the top. This swamp is filled with lotuses and ducks.
After breakfast spent time in the caves and at the Nityananda temple above the caves. Then we sat down for sometime just casually talking at the below Swami Janananda temple.
Aunty is in her own world... with us, yet not with us :)