Friday, August 23, 2019

The Rarely Understood Enlightened Souls


Was about to sleep and this post popped up and was deeply moved.




It reminded me of Babe Baba too. Bhagwan Nityananda had once left his body unhappy that people go to him for all worldly benefits but hardly any who desire for what He certainly wishes to give (liberation). But Babe Baba was sent back and had to return into his body much to the happiness of all His devotees who were sitting shocked at His motionless body not wanting to believe that He has left His body. Then Bade Baba's belly moved and He was still in deep state of consciousness with little consciousness to the questions that people were asking Him as to where he had been for so long. He said in bits and pieces that He had left in dismay but the Gurumandala sent Him back. When asked who in Gurumandala Bade Baba had begun saying, "Vivekananda was there......." By then He regained awareness of his surroundings and immediately stopped saying anything. People continued asking him further but He spoke not after that.

This post of Swami Vivekananda reminded me this incident of Bade Baba and am awed if Swami Vivekananda was in the Gurumandala of Bade Baba, then what to say..... Awed and deeply moved by this post of Swami Vivekananda too 🙏🙏🙏

The below post is from - https://www.facebook.com/knowswamiji


🌺 He was fast losing interest in active work. On April 7, 1900, he wrote to a friend:
“My boat is nearing the calm harbour, from which it is never more to be driven out. Glory, glory unto Mother! (Referring to the Divine Mother of the Universe.) I have no wish, no ambition now. Blessed be Mother! I am the servant of Ramakrishna. I am merely a machine. I know nothing else. Nor do I want to know.”

To another friend he wrote, on April 12, in similar vein:
“Work always brings dirt with it. I paid for the accumulated dirt with bad health. I am glad my mind is all the better for it. There is a mellowness and a calmness in life now, which never was before. I am learning now how to be attached as well as detached — and mentally becoming my own master. ... Mother is doing Her own work. I do not worry much now. Moths like me die by the thousands every minute. Her work goes on all the same. Glory unto Mother! ... For me — alone and drifting about in the will-current of the Mother has been my life. The moment I have tried to break it, that moment I was hurt. Her will be done. ... I am happy, at peace with myself, and more of the sannyasin, than I ever was. The love for my own kith and kin is growing less every day — for Mother, increasing. Memories of long nights of vigil with Sri Ramakrishna, under the Dakshineswar banyan tree, are waking up once more. And work? What is work? Whose work? Whom to work for? I am free. I am Mother's child. She works, She plays. Why should I plan? What shall I plan? Things came and went, just as She liked, without my planning, in spite of my planning. We are Her automata. She is the wire-puller.”

To another friend he wrote, on April 12, in similar vein:
“Work always brings dirt with it. I paid for the accumulated dirt with bad health. I am glad my mind is all the better for it. There is a mellowness and a calmness in life now, which never was before. I am learning now how to be attached as well as detached — and mentally becoming my own master. ... Mother is doing Her own work. I do not worry much now. Moths like me die by the thousands every minute. Her work goes on all the same. Glory unto Mother! ... For me — alone and drifting about in the will-current of the Mother has been my life. The moment I have tried to break it, that moment I was hurt. Her will be done. ... I am happy, at peace with myself, and more of the sannyasin, than I ever was. The love for my own kith and kin is growing less every day — for Mother, increasing. Memories of long nights of vigil with Sri Ramakrishna, under the Dakshineswar banyan tree, are waking up once more. And work? What is work? Whose work? Whom to work for? I am free. I am Mother's child. She works, She plays. Why should I plan? What shall I plan? Things came and went, just as She liked, without my planning, in spite of my planning. We are Her automata. She is the wire-puller.”

(Swami Nikhilananda "Swami Vivekananda - A Biography", Second Visit To The West, p. 167)
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Thursday, August 8, 2019

Bhagwan Nityananda sends his disciple away so that He enter Mahasamadhi

Something hardly known by the world...
Today is the Punyathithi of Bhagwan Nityananda, the day he left his mortal self at 10:42 am on August 8, 1961.
Today, i remembered a strange, mystical and vivid incident during one of my travel in September 2017 to Mathura and Vrindavan. i had shared many happy and divine moments at that time but somehow had refrained speaking about a certain incident, which today propels me to be shared on this divine day.
i had just packed my small bagpack one weekend while in Delhi and booked a train to Mathura for God knows reasons that i do not yet know. It was a very strong pull and i hopped into the train in a couple of hours, reached Mathura next morning and booked a hotel and dashed to visit the Krishna temple in Mathura and then to Brindavan. It was a very ecstatic trip as though there was a very divine flow and rhythm in these sacred places and i had jumped into its current, for it took me from places to places without me having to pressure my logic any bit. But there had been one recurrent thought coming to my mind right from the time i heard the word "Gokul" and it haunted me for two days.
Many years back in 2011, i was would frequent the Nitaynanda Ashram in Belgaum because it was close to my home. There Swami Vijayananda gave me a Hindi book that was written on Swam Karunananda who took Samadhi in Gokul. Swamiji asked me to visit, but to my dismay since i am not fluent with Hindi i politely returned the book to him and also had told i havent been ever to North and i highly doubt if i can ever visit the Samadhi.
Swami Karunananda (Mauni Baba)
Now, if you don't know Swami Karunananda was one of Bhagwan's most low profile disciple who always stayed away from limelight and i doubt if there is any information anywhere in detail about his life than this post. i shall mention later as to where this information came from. In very short, i try to compress the whole story and it is huge real story of the Guru Disciple. Swami Karunananda was very close to Bhagwan and lived with him in very close proximity. He chose to take a place far away from the crowds and thus requested Bhagwan one day, who very unexpectedly asked him to go to Gokul. Swami Karunananda had no idea where this was and told Bhagwan of his plight. Bhagwan just said to go and everything will be taken care of. So, when Swami Karunananda arrived in Gokul an old man who saw that Swamiji was looking new, asked him his whereabouts and asked him if it was okay if he could live in an abandoned broken hut in an isolated place. Swami Karunananda immediately obliged because this was exactly what he was looking for. When they reached the hut and Swamiji turned to thank the old man, there was noone! His heart filled in gratitude knowing that it was his Gurudev. He then meditated there in isolation for many years before returning to Ganeshpuri. When he returned to Ganeshpuri, Bhagwan asked a cup of coffee be given to him (he regularly did that with his this disciple) and asked him to rest in the adjacent room where Bhagwan stayed. Bhagwan then unexpectedly asked him to go to Palani and continue his practice there. This time Swamiji was not very keen to stay apart from his Guru, but Bhagwan insisted and he had to leave. So, he left reluctantly. He found a cave for himself on the sacred Palani Hill (where is Swami Bhogarnath Jeeva Samadhi). He
Bhagwan Nityananda & Swami Shivananda Paramahamsa
meditated for many years along with Swami Shivananda Paramahamsa of Vadagara, the Sage who would catch live electric wires. For those who dont know, Swami Shivananda Paramahamsa was a great ascetic whose photo is famous, where Bhagwan, as an adolescent, is seated in his lap. Swami Shivananda Paramahamsa was a master in hatta yoga and breathwork and his ashram is in Vadagara, Kerala, where not only he but many of his disciples also have taken Samadhi. Again, Vadagara, i used to visit because i used to visit Avdhoot Amma who also resides in Vadagara :) Moreover, i came to know much about Swami Shivanand Paramahamsa's lineage and ashram after my first ever encounter with a monk was my first ever visit and stay with Mohan Swami, a Yogi from the lineage of Swami Shivananda Paramahamsa. Mohan Swami was trained in his ashram. i have written about my detailed stay with Mohan Swami in my travel blog and had learned some key breathwork from him back then. This was much before i had met my Master. The article is here.

So, Swami Karunananda did his practices with Swami Shivananda Paramahamsa in Palani, and it was on this mountain that Swami Shivananda attained self-realization. During all these life event, Swami Karunananda even attempted suicide once by jumping over a cliff while in Gokarna in Karnataka, but survived with a broken leg and saved by fishermen. At that precise moment Bhagwan exclaimed sitting in Ganeshpuri "Karunananda has jumped into the sea!" which probably must have rarely been understood by the people who heard him say that. So what saved his life was actually Bhagwan. There are lot of stories of the connection between Bhagwan and his disciple Swami Karunanada, but i would not be able to mention them all, for i want the direct source to be contacted for further details (that is, Swami Karunananda ashram in Gokul).
Holy Palani Hill in Tamil Nadu
But, now, the story turns more intense and deeper. Swami Karunananda had a vision of Bhagwan Nityananda intending to leave his body. Deeply perturbed, he leaves Palani in haste to reach Ganeshpuri. In those days it took days of travel and multiple changes of trains and road transport to reach Ganeshpuri. While sitting in despair in the train he fell into meditation, where he again had the vision of Bhagwan sternly asking him why is he heading to Ganeshpuri and not following instructions. Angrily Bhagwan asks him to return. Deeply shocked, Swami Karunananda alights the train and goes back but remains restless. Soon, the news of Bhagwan Nityananda leaving his body reaches this dear disciple. In utter shock and dismay, Swami Karunananda immediately starts for Ganeshpuri. On reaching Ganeshpuri, he is devastated to see that his Guru's body was given the samadhi, as per the instructions of Bhagwan, that his samadhi should be next to the Bhimeshwar temple. Bhagwan had left his body in the Bangalorewala building upstairs (where his bed is still preserved and arati done everyday). It is just opposite to Shaligram Swami Samadhi. Bangalorewala building was built by the Khoday family, who were the trustees then. Mr and Mrs Khodays were personally attending to Bhagwan's needs here in Bangalorewala building, which was chosen by Bhagwan himself to leave his body.
The bed where Bhagwan left his body in Bangalorewala Building
The lower part of the building was a stay place for monks and travellers (it still is). Swami Karunananda who is totally devastated and confused as to why his Gurudev did this to him, he does not even go to the Samadhi but locks himself up in one of the room in this lower building. He decides to give up his life. Closing and bolting the door from within, he sits for the process. Now, Swami Karunananda was a very advanced disciple. With firm dedication he sits that way and a night passes. Next morning, Mrs. Khoday arrives right in front of this room with a cup of coffee in her hand and begins banging the door asking the door be opened, but Swami Karunananda is firm. When she finds no response, she bangs hard shouting, "I dont know who is inside, but had a dream last night where Bhagwan instructed me to go to this room and give a cup of coffee to the Yogi inside this particular room. So please open the door or else i will have to break open since it is Bhagwan's instructions." In a big dilemma Swami Karunananda gets up and opens the door. Mrs Khoday is shocked to see Swami Karunananda. She quietly offers the coffee. Requesting a few minutes from Mrs. Khoday, Swami Karunananda dashes to the Samadhi of Bhagwan and bursts out in tears. As he enters into meditation Bhagwan appears to him and scolds him for being this way. He admonishes him stating that at this level he must not be attached to his body. He instructs him to go back to Gokul and help people. Swami Karunananda returns, much relieved and accepts and drinks the cup of coffee that Bhagwan had sent to him as prasad, and he returns to Gokul. Never after that did he ever come to Ganeshpuri. He left his body in Gokul. All these details were confided to his disciple Gopal Swami, who wrote a book on him in Hindi. This was the same book i had politely refused when Swami Vijayananda had given to me while in Belgaum many years ago. So, Gopal Swami, also took samadhi near his Guru in the same ashram in Gokul but it was only due to him such previous details between Bhagwan and his disciple was known or would have been lost with the thousands of other mysteries of Bhagwan and his disciples. But in the book Gopal Swami did mention why Bhagwan Nityananda kept Swami Karunanda away! Bhagwan Nityananda very well knew that Swami Karunananda had the siddhi of parakaya pravesh (leaving one's body and entering into other's) and Bhagwan knew well that only a disciple who had this siddhi could stop his Guru from entering Samadhi! :)
Now, i never knew all these details about Swami Karunananda. I knew of the sadhna spot of Swami Karunananda on top of the Ganeshpuri hill and would quietly visit that place where he had spent many years in tapas. It is located on the highest top of the hill of Ganeshpuri.
So, i knew only that Swami Karunanda's samadhi was in Gokul and from the time i left for Mathura this was haunting me. This thing flashed in my mind and now i was happy since i was in Mathura and visiting Gokul would not be an herculean task. But then, i googled up for the address and in vain. i tried everything but apart from just one website that spoke about him in brief details there was no sign of his Gokul address anywhere. For some reasons i could not reach Swami Vijayananda also to find the details. i was disappointed. More disappointed because the google map was showing me that Gokul was only 8 kms away! But where in Gokul would i search because i knew Swami Karunanda was not that well known on the internet. (he still is not, which is why i make this humble effort with the grace of the Masters). Just after i got out of the Mathura temple, i decided to give one more try on google but again in vain. i just walked down the streets of Mathura thinking of going to Brindavan next.
As i walked, an auto guy came and stopped right in my way forcing me to stop. He said in Hindi, "Sir, you want to roam the city of Lord Krishna?" I refused and walked away. He kept following me and bargained that he would show me all the places for Rs.300/- I refused and continued walking. And then he said, "Sir, Gokul jayenge?" i stopped and asked what is there in Gokul. He began telling that this was the place that Lord Krishna and Balrama grew up, their school, their playlands, mischiefs, etc. It seemed interesting but then in the back of my mind was, "Gosh, if i only knew the address of Swami Karunananda's samadhi. But then i thought let me anyways visit. i told him that i DO NOT want to visit and hear stories about anything in Gokul or elsewhere. i told him that i would agree for a lesser price because i will not be having darshans or spending time listening to the stories but he would just have to tell me what is that spot significant for and that's it, he has to allow me to spend some time in meditation instead, for i had nothing against the story but i knew it had a lot of masala added with it down the generations. My Master has always taught to meditate in divine locations than doing anything else less useful than that. He agreed for it was a good deal for him as he was not needed to exert talking. i ask him to first take me to the banks of Mother Yamuna.
Gokul on the banks of River Yamuna
He takes me there. After a wash in the holy waters and a little meditation on the banks i return to the auto to see a perplexed him asking, "what were you doing siting there." i told him that he wouldn't understand and asked him where next. He said he would take me to the Balram Temple, which was supposedly the birthplace of Balram ji. i agree. He stops his auto at the entrance and i ask him to give me 15 minutes.
Temple of Balram ji.
i enter this small temple and sit for meditation noticing that the curtains are down for that relaxed afternoon hour. But the priest beckons me and offers to do the arati after opening the curtain behind which was the idol of Balram ji. After that i return to my spot and look around. i spot a big photo of Bhagwan Nityananda! i was astonished as to how on earth did this photo here in this temple? i go and sit at the photo where another pandit is waving arati. Looking at me stare at the photo the pandit asks me, "Do you know him?" I said, "Very intensely." He laughed and said, "Fir toh hum Guru-bhai hue."(then we are the guru brothers. He said that he was Bhagwan's bhakt (devotee) and that he regularly goes to Ganeshpuri. At that very moment i saw a small photo of Swami Karunananda kept at Bhagwan's feet! i exclaimed, "Swami Karunananda!" The pandit said, "Oh, you know him also?" I said, "Yes! i have been searching for his ashram and samadhi." The pandit said, "You could have searched him on the internet." i said i did but i did not find. He asked me what name did i search for? When i told him Swami Karunananda, he laughed and said that he is popularly known as "Mauni Baba" there and had i searched or even asked anyone in Mathura or Brindavan, people would have guided me. i never knew about his this name! The pandit said that Swami Karunananda had spent 8 years in total maun (silence) as a part of his tapas (austerities) and after that became known there as "Mauni Baba". I asked him where was his samadhi. He laughed and said, "Just walking distance behind this temple!" My heart was overjoyed and i profusely thanked the pandit and left. Googling this time, i saw that we were also in the vicinity of the samadhi. It showed just 2 minutes from there. i told the auto guy rest of the plan cancelled and we would only be going to this ashram and spend time there. Soon we reached the ashram and i noticed that the construction work of the Samadhi temple was on.
As i stood gazing, a gentleman from the residence building next to the ashram came and asked what did i want. When i told him, he first asked how did i get this place. When i narrated the whole story, he promptly called me inside his home and made me sit. Offering me water, he asked how did i know about Swami Karunananda. i told him about Swami Vijayananda mentioning about him. He was thrilled to hear about Swami ji and said he knew him well. i asked him who was he and he said, he was the brother of Gopal Swami (disciple of Swami Karunananda). He said that he was one of the trustees and spoke about his brother's samadhi beside his Guru's. He then promptly took me to the ashram and asked me to change my dress and wear a dhoti without shirt. i immediately changed in a small room where i noticed an old man sitting in his own world. i then went out of the room and walked to the temple where the trustee was waiting for me. He opened the temple and then opened a gate which remains closed always and open only for occasions. This gate lead through a narrow cave like stony structure and ended up in a tiny little cave, where was the samadhi of Karunananda! i prostrated there and the gentleman did an arati and then led me back to the temple, closing the gate and locking it back.
(The samadhi is visible in this video)

He said i could meditate wherever i wanted in the temple and that i surely meet him once before i leave. i thanked him for everything and meditated. Then i also visited the samadhi of Gopal Swami, and then went back to that room to change my clothes, where the old man was still seated. He seemed not like an ordinary man, looking at the way he was sitting and engrossed with himself. After changing i sat next to him trying to engage in a talk but he hardly responded. Then i gave up and just sat quietly. Soon a boy came and served him tea and the old man asked the boy to offer me also a cup of tea, to which i thanked, being happy that atleast he was aware i am sitting there :) I asked him who was he. He just said, "I live around here." Then there was a long silence as we sipped tea. Then he asked, "Who id your Guru?" I said, "Avdhoot Shivanand" and he seemed to be trying to grasp. i quickly took out my wallet and showed him my Master's photo. He said, "Hmmmmm. i know him. i have met him long back. Tell him about me and he will remember." I said, "What should i mention you name?" He said, "Show him my picture and he will recognize, as my name he might not remember." Now, that was enough for me to quickly take the much-awaited selfie :))
By this time it had been two hours and the auto guy came in with a weary look. i had forgotten about this guy :)) As i left, the old man as me to hold on and then opened an old squeaky metal suitcase that seemed to be his only possession, and offered me two apples. i thanked him and left, giving one apple to the auto guy who seemed very happy to receive the prasad. i went to the trustee's home to thank him and he asking me to wait, went in and brought out two books and placed them in my hands. i looked at it and it was the same book in Hindi that i had refused along with another Hindi book. i told him how mysterious things are that this book has landed into my hands again. He asked me how i knew Swami Vijayananda to which i told him that i have lived in that Nityananda ashram for 6 months helping Swamiji translate a few of his Kannada books to English. The gentleman had a smile and said, "I knew it! You have been brought here for a reason. I brought these two books hesitantly wanting to ask you the same that would you translate this book to Enlgish?" i was very happy to hear this but at the same time a little taken aback because of my poor Hindi reading skills. But i took the book anyways.
And all that i mentioned about Swami Karunananda and Bhagwan Nityananda are from the writings of Gopal Swami, to whom Swami Karunananda revealed all details. Gopal Swami had written these books, but not publicised much. They mentioned about their intent to now do so since the world needs to know about it. i later realized i should have clicked many other important photos, but at that time everythng happened at such pace that nothing seemed to make any sense. It took me a few days to even understand the whole thing. And then, later i learnt that the old man sitting in that room was the disciple of Gopal Swami and was around since the Masters lived there!
For some reason, i never wanted to speak about this whole incident, but today being Bhagwan's punyathithi, this whole episode that happened while Bhagwan took Mahasamadhi, came before me and i felt this urge to share, with the blessings of Bhagwan and my Master.
What selfless work do the great Masters and their disciples undertake for the benefit and good of all. What sacrifices! What unconditional love! Om Namo Bhagawathey Nityanandaya!
Address:
Sri Sadguru Sharanam Mauni Baba Ashramam
Gokul Mahaban Bangar, Mathura, Uttar Pradesh 281303
Phone: 089231 55334


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