Kali, The Highest Love, Trailanga Swami, Sacrifices

Guruji: “[About Vimalananda] It’s rare to have such a combination: practice of aghora, intellectuality, as well as a sense of humor. Most so-called aghoris just sit around with a frustrated look on their faces. A touch of humor is rare. Or you can say that humor probably comes only after a certain level, after you are past the periods of frustration and toil. He can afford to laugh who has achieved something. Or rather than achievement, you can say someone who’s resolved all his questions. Then they don’t care what kind of image is being conveyed. Such a person would talk honestly, in forthright manner, and they can share a joke as well! Robert Svaboda should be considered lucky. Among all the books I’ve read, his experience is among the most interesting.

“One should also remember that Kali is basically the goddess of Tantra. She is the primary presiding deity for all black magic and other such rituals. Her universal form, etc, was later developed by philosophers. All forms of black magic rituals, hexes, death spells, human and animal sacrifices, etc, are sworn in the name of Kali. Isn’t Bengal’s black magic famous? And she is most worshiped there. Kali’s rituals prescribe eating rice and fish in the night before repeating her mantras, and you can see that rice and fish are totally inscribed in Bengali culture.”

Q: “Guruji, why do gods require sacrifices?”

Guruji: “It is directly related to the game of power. Whichever animal you are sacrificing, you gain control over its spirit. These are just means to become powerful in the astral world. Whether it’s the ashwamedha yagna, or human sacrifice, or lamb sacrifice, you are able to control their life-force, in a way. If you want to gain control over a spirit, why go through the trouble of looking for a spirit? Do a human sacrifice and catch the released spirit! Many tantrics and aghoris used to do that. Ultimately what’s the result? Nothing. Impress the world, get your petty things done, and gain a little feeling of power. But I’ve seen such tantrics meet very pathetic ends.”

Q: “So gods and goddesses don’t get appeased with sacrifices?”

Guruji: “Who will be appeased by a sacrifice? Their appeasement or provocation depends entirely on the intent and motivation of the person. Most sacrifices are offered to fulfill a desire or after it has been fulfilled. It’s purely a worldly matter.

“Why is there no sacrifices offered to Shiva? Sacrifices are never offered to Shiva. Only abhishek (sacred anointment, ablution). He doesn’t like sacrifices. The purest form of worship is only Shiva’s – even the priest needs to be completely vegetarian.”

Q: “Guruji, why is Shiva offered the pyre ash?”

Guruji: “Only in Ujjain Mahakala, nowhere else. The story is this: when Devi Sati immolated herself in Daksha yagna, Shiva took the ash from Her half-burned body and applied it on His body. Because he loved her so much, he carried her body on his shoulder throughout the world and rubbed her ash on himself and made a garland of her bones which he wore himself, and then removed himself into solitary meditation! That was, I think, the highest form of love expressed, ever!”

[about Trailanga Swami]

Q: “Read somewhere that Trailanga Swami worshiped Shiva-linga with his own excrements.”

Guruji: “Never heard of that, though I’ve read about him eating his own excrements. That was a famous incident: Once he got arrested due to ‘indecent exposure’. Some English memsahibs came for a stroll where he was sitting naked on the grass. Looking at him, they were shocked! ‘How horrible! Such a grotesque man is lying around naked! Arrest him.’ they cried. On their complaint, the collector put him behind bars. Now as he was walking in his prison cell, he casually ‘walked-out’ of his prison cell without getting ‘barred’ by the prison bars. It caused such a pandemonium! Sometimes he was seen strolling on the roof, sometimes outside the prison. They were not able to contain him.

“On the day of his hearing in front of the collector for ‘indecent exposure’, when the collector asked him about it, he simply said: ‘We are children of God. Children go about naked, so I’m naked. What’s the problem? Indecent or decent lies in the eye of the beholder.’
The collector asked him: ‘Do you consider everybody as equal?’.
He said: ‘Yes, everybody is equal’.
‘In that case, will you be able to eat what we eat?’ They ate beef, etc, so the collector thought that that would get the naked madman back on line.
He said: ‘Sure, if you can can eat what I eat, than I’ll eat what you eat’ . The collector thought he’s just a vegetarian Hindu, what’s the worse that could happen. So he said: ‘Yes, I’m ready’. Hearing this, Trailanga Swami shat,then and there in the courtroom, and ate it! (laughs). He was immediately released. Because even when they had imprisoned him, he was casually walking out of his cell. Nobody was able to restrain them.

“His siddhis were so powerful! Actually people’s devotion only start only with display of power; nobody cares for saintliness. Take the miracles out of Lahiri Mahasaya’s life, who would have gone to him then? Only when Trailanga Swami took him into his arms and said that ‘this man has accomplished everything without giving up anything, which I have sought by renouncing everything including my loin cloth!’ Only after his recognition Lahiri Mahasaya became famous in Banaras.

“But Trailanga Swami was a great man, there’s no doubt about that. He was one of the greatest aghoris of all time.”

Q: “It’s interesting that there were so many great people living around the same time.”

Guruji: “That’s true. There are a lot of famous people from around that time – Ramakrishna Paramahansa, Lahiri Mahasaya, Trailanga Swami, Bhaskarananda, Balananda, Totapuri, etc. But the thing is, how many contemporary people knew them? Only after people who came later read their stories that they became famous.”

[20090802-2] Recorded: July 2003

Kali Worship, Vimalananda, Ethereal Beings

Guruji: “I just finished reading “Kali’s Odiyya” yesterday. Most of it was good but some things were beyond comprehension. It appears to have a mix of fantasy as well, for example, when he cuts Sandhya’s body into pieces. I mean, people who are able to contact such super beings, and can go outside their body at will, have the shafe-shifting ability and can turn into a dog, why would they bother about trivial matters? And there’s the physical relationship of cousins – Sandhya and Shambhu, and their aunt Prema encouraging them, and despite having such powers she simply died of malaria! On one hand you are talking about supernatural powers and on the other hand you die such a trivial death. And eating her corpse as the last rites! That is quite strange.”

Q: “Is it only fantasy then?

Guruji: “It appears to have a blend of reality as well, especially the rituals about Kali’s worship and the description of ‘Odiyyas’ which are very similar to nature spirits. In this book, apparently his personal fantasies have gotten mixed as well. Even though you sometimes get to hear such cases, but they have gone too far in it. If you have left all inhibitions and not accepting social norms, why are you living in society at all? The point is, if we are not accepting the social structure, and have broken all social taboos, then after breaking all social taboos you should be away from society. You are breaking all the social rules and yet completely thriving on society, this is a hypocritical thing.

“Couple of things he has said in the book are really good. For example what he said about non-violence, it was a very good statement. Until there’s love in the heart, violence will never end. That is exactly the fact. Book is amusing though. It mostly talks about the black magic rituals in the villages of South India, which they have tried to connect to cosmic consciousness, etc.

“Another interesting thing is the reference to the book named Aghora Rahasya. I have heard about it from some South Indians. The author is some Nambudiri brahmin. The community of Nambudiri brahmins is known as masters of black magic in South India. In villages there, no one would dare bother any Nambudiri living in their village, because they know if he’s pissed, he could wreak havoc on their homes and the entire village. Adi Shankaracharya was also a Nambudiri brahmin. These people have a deep knowledge of tantra, through tradition only.

“I have discussed about aghoris with many people, and Aghora Rahasya is not about real aghoris, but it has a lot of information about going to smashan (cremation grounds) and catching ghosts, or to do black-magic rituals. The simplest method in that book is to find the skull of a freshly cremated corpse, one which is half-burned, and on the new moon night cook rice and lentils in it and eat! If you did this, the ghost or the spirit of that body will come in your control, and will start telling you things and get your work done. This is the first initiation – cooking and eating rice and dals in the skull of a corpse, flavored with its brain (laughs). There are many such methods described in that book, to contact ghosts and earthly spirits.

“And the other aghora tradition, of Dattatreya and Gorakhnath, that is of course a very high form of aghora. They have nothing to do with ghosts. Their objective is to live in smashan and gain contact with Shiva, who is known to live in smashan.”

Q: “Guruji, what do you think about about Vimalananda’s (Robert Svoboda’s) Aghora books?

Guruji: “They are very much near to the facts. Although there are some incidents that Vimalananda suggestively narrated, which Robert Svoboda has credited to Vimalananda himself, but those are stories of Aghori Kinaram. But otherwise that book is very good. It definitely adds to the general knowledge. These discussions are common among aghoris or yogis. It could have been me talking! About Dattatreya, Shiva-ji, Kundalini, yantras – these are some of the fundamental subjects. Vimalananda is real. I have read all the 3 parts. What he has said about Dattatreya, about Krishna, Shiva-ji, aghoris, Girnar, about Dhuni, etc, these things are possible and they do happen.”

Q: “It is mentioned in those books that Vimalananda had met Lord Dattatreya and Guru Gorakhnath.”

Guruji; “Some of it is exaggeration as well, for example, about Babaji. Gorakhnath was mentioned in the context of what he called avishkara – inviting a deity to enter somebody’s body. There’s no mention of a direct meeting.

“You’ll find a lot of people like Vimalananda in Maharashtra. “Navnath Charitra” (stories of the nine Naths) can be found in every home. Saint Gyaneshwara himself was a Nath yogi. I think it’s a fairly common knowledge there about Guru Dattatreya – he is called Datta Guru there – and about immortal Naths. In Gwalior, we used to think that Dattatreya was only a god of Maharashtrian folks, since only they used to go to Dattatreya’s temple. People in central area are not very familiar with Nath tradition. But that book is very factual. Of course, there’s always some elaboration, some dramatization. But even then, it is 95% fact.”

Q: “Guruji, the aghora mentioned in that book, is that practiced for power or for self-realization?

Guruji: “See, the system of Vimalananda was tantric system, which has ritualistic practices for a direct experience of the Goddess and to gain powers from Her, practices like Shava (corpse) Sadhana. It is fairly commonly known in central India that people do these things (Shava Sadhana), even though in reality it is very rare to find people who actually know such practices and have actually done them. Yet, there are people who do these practices and surely gain contact with a super spirit.

“What he has mentioned that the goddess first came in the form a white jackal, that is also a fact. White jackal has come here (academy campus) as well! Our watchman saw it – there were flames coming out of its mouth. It happened in 2000 winter, and after that, there was a complete change in scenario over here! It was in 1999 december of 2000 January. People call it ‘Siawoli’, and fire emanates from its mouth. It is considered a form of the goddess. In addition, the devotees of the goddess who are practicing the tantric system offer meat to the jackal as an offering to the goddess. If the jackal cries out after eating the sacrificial meat then it is considered that the goddess is appeased. In Bengal, women-folks produce ‘hulu’ sounds on certain occasions – weddings for example. That is also an imitation of jackal. It’s exactly the same sound, you should check that out. Since the goddess worshiping is an integral part of Bengali culture, they know this connection. And ‘shiva’, the name of the goddess, is an exact Sanskrit word for she-jackal. There are some really amazing tantras in India.

“This kind of knowledge is spread all over the place. Some of it is documented in texts, some are transmitted through traditions.”

Q: “It’s hard to distinguish what is true and what is bogus.”

Guruji: “Yes, only with experience you can tell what is possible and what is not. It’s a research work.

“There was a pundit in Mathura who had gained control over a yakshini (a powerful ethereal being). There are lots of ways described in tantras to gain control over different kinds of yakshinis.

“He could do miracles with the help of that Yakshini, like being able to tell anything about anybody, causing hail-storms, raining of stones, etc. But when he was about to die, he realized the terrible consequences he was going to suffer. So he called his sons and told them this ‘I’m sending her to a far-off place. Before she returns, tie my body to a heavy stone and drown me in Yamuna river, otherwise she’ll take me with her’. See that’s the point. If you enslave an astral being for material gains, you won’t be able to get away from it after death. They are powerful in that domain! You force them to be a slave against their will. If she had served him out of her own will, it would have been perfectly fine.

“So he sent her away and before she could come back, he drowned himself in the river. What happened afterward is just unimaginable! It rained blood in their house, his dead body when recovered was found filled with human feces in the mouth! It was unmentionable what all happened to them. That’s why the wise men have said ‘Beware! All such businesses have a terrible end.’ You get some publish adulation but ultimately suffer the consequences yourself.

Q: “Guruji, what do these ethereal being generally do?

Guruji: ‘Well, these ethereal beings have a totally different sense of time from us. What a lifetime is for us could be just a day or two for them. And they have very long lifespans – thousands and even millions of years long. They live very long!

Q: “If people know about these terrible consequences, why do they do these things – force ghosts, yakshinis, etc, to do their bidding?

Guruji: “For greed, for fame, public adulation, for earning money, doing business, impressing people, what else! Feeling of power is very intoxicating. Everybody wants credit for doing favors, everybody wants people to sit at their feet and worship them as gods. All these things lead people on these paths.”

Q: “Guruji, are there any tantric practices in our yoga tradition as well?

Guruji: “No, we don’t have a system to force anybody against their will. They can contact us on their own, and they do. That is a better option, if there’s friendship on an equal footing. Remember, friendship lasts only among equals. When you are able to raise your standards to their level, they’ll automatically contact you. Before that, it’ll be forced.

“Even this name you must have heard, X. He went mad in the end! He also developed rectum cancer. He was trying to gain control over a yakshini. That ritual failed and he went mad and died as if he was suffering in hell! He had a really terrible death.

“Think of it this way – you are blackmailing a very powerful person to do your bidding. The day you loose your hold, he’ll destroy you. And when you deal on equal terms and you yourself have become powerful, there might be a friendship. That has always been the difference and will always remain so. And self-progress can only happen through Yoga; there’s no other way. Self power can only increase through yoga. And the purpose of Yoga is always perfectly clear! Instead of catching some other spirit to gain knowledge about the spiritual world, why not control your own spirit and gain that knowledge – didn’t it also come from the spiritual domain? And you don’t blackmail yourself.

Q: “This is a very fascination subject. How can I develop a general understanding of the subject?

Guruji: “You’ll pick things up along the way. Buy a set of these books. You’ll gain a lot of knowledge about mantras and tantras. It’s not of any practical use though. There are a lot of tantric rituals and mantras described in that book, only for the fulfillment of material desires. And I’ve found that many mantras given in that book are incorrect. But it’ll help with the general knowledge of the subject.

Q: “Guruji, did you specifically study this subject to understand all this or did you gain the knowledge automatically?

Guruji: “You can say I understood it automatically (laughs). See, I’ve never studies mantras but when I hear one, I can tell if there’s a mistake in it and what that mistake is. It comes from inside whether this is wrong or right. Somebody gifted me these books few years back. When I looked at the rituals prescribed in the book, I was surprised. Based on that, miracles should have been an everyday occurrence, since there’s no dearth of people in India engaged in such tantric rituals. But when my attention went to the mantras, I realized that most of them were either incomplete or had incorrect pronunciation. There are many technical mistakes in the book, which either have been deliberately introduced or have somehow gotten in there. That’s why they don’t give any results.

“I’ve never studies any mantras. But with yoga practice, you acquire the ability to analyze everything, even including the ritualistic worship of any god. And ultimately these rituals are kamya karma, for fulfillment of material desires. No more than that. I have observed that if a person practices yoga – sincerely, consistently, regularly, their desires get fulfilled automatically. That is more preferable. The best thing is if Nature Itself starts taking care of you. And after reaching a certain state, whatever the man utters becomes a mantra!

“That’s why you’ve never seen me reading a mantra, in puja or otherwise. We play Damaru, which is more than enough. Memorizing the mantra and then showing-off in front of people by repeating them doesn’t make any sense to me. Simplicity is the biggest deal. And the simplicity of a person develops only when all his desires are near the state of fulfillment. He won’t care for anything! Why does a man crave money or power? To fulfill some desires. If your desires are already fulfilled, then why would you go after them? If the Nature starts favoring you then you won’t have to worry about anything.”

[20090802-2] Recorded: July 10, 2003

Story of a Brahma Rakshasa

Guruji: “[…] monkeys have been wreaking havoc in the campus last few days. About 10-15 days back, a man visited me who had attained the ability to invoke a powerful astral being. Many businessmen and politicians seek his favor, but his astral ‘friend’ told him to be careful when he was visiting me.

“As soon as that person walked in here, his astral friend overpowered him, and started talking to me directly. The astral being was a brahmarakshasa1, whom Lord Hanuman had made his messenger. He was also known as chote maharaj (young sir). He told me ‘you can call me anytime and I’ll do your bidding’. Last night I called him, and told him that monkeys are creating a lot of trouble in the campus, keep them away. Haven’t seen a single monkey since this morning (laughs). I just said it out loud: ‘monkey are making trouble; keep them away’, and that’s it! Will do some more trials on him. This is the second time. First time I had told him to summon the SDM (Sub Divisional Magistrate), and the SDM was here next morning!”

Q: “Guruji, what is the story of this brahmarakshasa?”

Guruji: “He was a brahmin priest in a temple of Lord Hanuman. The thakur (feudal lord) of that village had his eyes on the land of the temple; for that he got the priest murdered. Due to the untimely death, the priest became a brahmarakshasa after death, and in his rage killed twenty seven members of the thakur’s family. After that, he started regretting what he did, feeling that as a religious person he should have had forgiven them instead. Because of this feeling of remorse and because he was a sincere devotee, Hanumanji made him His messenger, and ordered him ‘the more public service you do, the more peace you’ll get and your power will increase and you’ll gain my closeness’. That’s why he’s doing public service now. He was definitely a genuine spirit; at least he chased our monkeys away! The guy who was ‘carrying’ this spirit was an ordinary school-teacher though.

“The astral being with Bhagatji2 was also a brahmarakshasa. However, he did something wrong and Hanumanji took his power and threw him out of His group. Now he’s only a simple preta (ghost).

“We’re doing a study of spirits these days – why do they do what they do, what’s their motivation, and what’s the ultimate result? This subject is very fascinating. If I weren’t a yogi, they would not be talking to me. They don’t give heed to ordinary people. A layman would get scared. Yogis stay calm; they don’t fear anything. The lineage of gurus offers protection, and the practice of yoga increases the power of your own self. No spirit can do you any harm; you can take on any astral being, doesn’t matter who they are!

“Is there silence on your side again?”

I’ve noticed that every time I talk to Guruji on the phone and whenever the conversation turns to serious subject, there would be an absolute, eerie silence in the atmosphere outside. There would be no sound of traffic, or any rustle in the wind. Even birds would be strangely quiet! I told this to Guruji and he mentioned that many of his disciples have observed this.

Guruji: “Local administration has done a good job this year. Guru Purnima is near and yet there’s an absolute pin-drop silence here. There are no microphones or loud-speakers blaring, or any horns being sounded. Local people are getting more and more disciplined with time. It’s surprising that I haven’t uttered a single curse word to a local person in more than a month (laughs).”

[20090801] Conversation recorded on: June 26th, 2004


  1. brahmarakshasa: Very powerful astral-beings. Only the most pious, learned, and purest brahmins who’ve suffered an untimely death turn into brahmarakshasa after death.
  2. Bhagatji ‘s story is for some other time.

Mother Earth is Death Herself!

[Guruji recounting a dream]

Guruji: “It’s an old dream, very terrifying. I saw large number of people doing parikrama (circumambulation of the sacred Goverdhan mountain). I was standing with a very tall man; I was barely reaching his waistline. He was totally black and looked extremely horrifying, with no hair, and his teeth and nails about 4-5 feet long! And behind us, there were millions of funeral pyres burning.

“We were merrily talking. Just then, I saw him casually pick up a passing man, using his nails as forks, and start roasting him on the funeral pyre behind us, all the while talking to me. The man he picked up started crying loudly due to the pain. I asked, ‘if you want to kill him then kill him; why are torturing him like this?’. He answered that until the man’s blood boils in his veins and turns blue, it won’t bring out the flavor! After some time, he ate him and picked up another man the same way!”

“It was a very strange dream. Its still very vivid in my memory. Later when I discussed this with people, I found out that when you heat up the blood to a certain temperature, it actually turns blue. And the most terrifying thing was what he said about blood and developing flavor! It means that in future a lot of people will die out of some blood disease. Their blood will turn blue due to this disease and the torture will lead to their death.”

Q: “Guruji, did such dreams help you give some direction in real life, or were some sort of premonition of events to unfold?”

Guruji: “Yes it does give direction in life. And you also get to know about coming events, in a different way. The black man I saw in my dream could have been anybody. Goverdhan is known as kala devata (black deity). Yamaraj (lord of death) is also black, and the Kaal of Yamaraj is black too. One thing is clear is that the next century is going to be soaked in blood, much more compared to the 20th century! And the next 20-22 years are going to be be very significant.”

Q: “What do you mean by ‘Kaal of Yamaraj”?
Guruji: “Yamaraj is the god of death, and Kaal is a special messenger of Yamaraj; he is death only. Kaal is the one who carries the noose, is totally black, and always remains naked; his description is very terrifying. I feel the man I saw could be Kaal.

“Kaal has other meanings as well. One is Time in Its entirety. Other is, when they say ‘his time has come’ – the moment of death. When we read about Kaal, it’s actually description of the ‘moment of death’ personified – black, with a noose in his hands, etc. I saw this dream around four years back.”

Q: “Guruji, in Mahabharata, death has been described as a lady who prays to lord Brahma that she didn’t want to kill anybody.”

Guruji: “Yes, and she is very beautiful! There is no difference between death and Mother Earth. That is why we also call Earth as mrityuloka, the domain of death. And she is the most beautiful lady in the universe. When she prayed that she didn’t want to kill anybody, Brahma’s blessing to her was that she will never be blamed for anybody’s death. So nobody blames her for anything, they simply cannot. Mind it, Earth is death herself!
“We also know that whenever a person dies, the cause is always something else. They’ll say it was an accident, or drowned in water, or brain hemorrhage, or snake bite, etc. Have you heard anybody ever say that a person died because death arrived? Even if a people dies when a building falls, people don’t say it was Earth who killed him. For them it was the building that killed. If drought strikes some place, they say people died because of hunger.

“Think about it. It is very important. Mother Earth is death herself. As they say, death always walks alongside a person, which is true because we are living on it. And see what happens after we die, we get mixed up in Earth only. We go back to Earth only.”

Q: “How are Yamaraj and Kaal involved in this?”

Guruji: “There are two things here. Our souls have come out of the Void (shunyata), which is also carrying Earth. It is a form of Shiva only, that’s why jiva1 is also called Shiva. Now when the union of Shiva and Earth takes place, multiple life forms are produced. But the soul in a life-form is coming from Void only. The domain of the soul coming out of the Void is that of Yamaraj. He has no concern with the earthly matters. But what a soul learns, experiences, and gains out of its contact with Earth is definitely his concern.”

Q: “And what goes back to Earth?”

Guruji: “All parthivta, all that is made of earth. The five elements belong to Earth only, and they dissolve back in Earth. But the eternal substance inside us, one that is the form of Shiva, which is formless, unmanifest, and eternal goes somewhere else. This is where the domain of Yamaraj starts from. The ‘otherworldly’, which is completely separate from the material world.

“These are some stunning revelations. Until now, we were just hunched over Earth, but there has to be purpose to it too. Until now we’ve been thinking about the consciousness of Matter (chaitanya padartha). Now we are gradually moving towards the consciousness of the Void (chaitanya shunyata).

“Then we’ll move to the consciousness of Time. It is beyond even the Void. It is ever present, and yet ever beyond. Remember the movie ‘Matrix’, the scene where the Agent caught Morpheus and was saying to him: ‘I hate this place. I need the code to get out of this place, and the code is in this mind. Give me the code’.
The whole deal is get this code. Once we get this code, we’ll be able to get out of this ‘Matrix’ (laughs). “

[20090802] Conversation recorded on: [..]


  1. jiva is immortal substance in all living being

Mysterious Gwalior: The Fort

A: “I was reading a book about the history of Gwalior. It mentioned that the Gwalior fort was built by Raja Mansingh at the request of a siddha named Gwalipa.”

Guruji: “I’ve heard that as well. Mansingh built only a few portions of the fort though, what are now known as “Man Mandir” and “Gujari Mahal”. The rest of the fort is quite old. In fact, it is one of the oldest forts in India. By the way, the temple in the fort known as ‘Saas Bahu Mandir’ was originally “Sahastrabahu Mandir”. [Sahastrabahu, “the-thousand-armed” is a legendary figure in Hindu mythology. He is also known as Kartyavirya Arjuna]. Over time, the name Sahastrabahu got corrupted into Saas Bahu (Saas = mother-in-law, Bahu = daughter-in-law).

“This history is not generally well known, but there are clues to prove that it might be true. There’s a village called Jamdwara near Gwalior, where it is believed that Jamdagni Rishi lived and built his ashram. That is the place where Lord Parashuram was born, and where he decapitated his mother Renuka Devi, and that’s where he fought and defeated Sahastrabahu Arjuna. Keeping these legends in mind, it is conceivable that there could be a temple of Sahastrabahu in Gwalior. There’s no deity in that temple which is really strange, but the place is very beautiful.”

“I’ve heard that there’s a maze in the fort where a lot of people have gotten lost over the years.”

“Not exactly a maze, but there’s a yantra like pattern in the garden of Gujari Mahal which sometimes people refer to as maze. There are a lot of hidden passages in the fort though. Some legends say that the fort was built overnight by djinns (genies) ! This is a legend from that area. Some sweet-makers in Old Gwalior (where the fort is) claim that djinns used to come in the night to buy sweets from them! By the way of payment, the djinns would give them round ‘coins’ made of leather, with 1 gram of Gold nail hammered in the middle of it. I have seen such a ‘coin’ in the possession of a shop-keeper. The shop-keepers used to keep the shops open all night long in the hope that the djinns would come buy from them, since the price djinns would pay with this special coin was much higher than the value of the sweets (laugh). That area is quite mysterious in some ways.”

“This book also claims that the current Gwalior is actually the old Goverdhan”.

“That’s very interesting to know! People say that in Krishna’s times, Gwalior was a part of Vraj. The cow herders (Gwaley) used to own all this land, including Gwalior and nearby places like Gohad. These places used to belong to the cow herders of Vraj mandal. Even the mountains of Gwalior are known as Gopanchal mountains. ‘Gopanchal’ literally means a place where gop or cow herder lives. It is definitely possible.

“Also see, there’s a place near Gwalior called “Jaurasi ka Daank” which is actually the place of spiritual austerities of the 84 Siddhas! 84 in Hindi is pronounced Churasi, from which the name Jaurasi came. Datia (a place near Gwalior) is associated with Lord Dattatreya. Its old name is Datteya. The temple of Lord Shiva there, Van Khandeswara Maharaj, is a very ancient temple. There’s a legend that Ashwatthama used to come and worship there. The place was later developed by Datia Swami. But it was already a siddha place.

“Send me a copy of the book you are reading, it sounds very interesting. [“Gwalior” by Arthur Hugh, Vidya Mandir Publications].

“There’s another legend about how the fort of Gwalior came about. There was a king named Surajsen who suffered from leprosy. He did worship of the sun to get healed from his sickness and he did. After that, he built the fort of Gwalior. There’s a kund (reservoir) named after him in the fort, called Suraj kund. In fact, there’s plenty of water at the top of the fort. There are many water tanks which never dry-up and they are always filled with water even though there’s no apparent source of water to them. The fort is quite big – it is about 2km x 1 km. There are also a lot of snakes and pythons in the fort.”

“In the book, there’s also a reference about a police constable who turned into a sadhu and now tells stories to everyone.”

“Yeah, it is a very old story. He was called Baba Lochandas. He used to be a police constable and a very sincere devotee of Lord Hanuman. One day, in his worship of Hanumanji he completely lost track of time and missed his duty at work. Later, he found out that some one else had come and carried out his duties in place of him. That instant itself he resigned from his job and turned into a sadhu. First he used to live near the fort but then he moved to Sanichara (a place in Gwalior). I’ve seen that place where he moved. It is quite remote. For miles, you don’t see any houses or people and at the end of the road there’s a temple on top of a mountain where sadhus have a place to stay. “


[20090801] Recorded: June 18, 2004