The Eternal Religion, Life and Death

Q: “Guruji, I was watching a documentary about Pygmy people on TV. It was amazing that in all their activities and songs they were thanking Nature from morning to evening.”

Guruji: “Yes, they are Nature worshipers. They live according to Nature, including most native tribes of Africa and and even Americas. Nature is the eternal religion, as we are living with Nature. And as soon as our behavior goes against Nature, we don’t experience anything except sorrow and frustration. Imagine someone who can understand his own nature and also Earth’s nature. How glad he will be, how close he’ll feel close to Earth!”

Q: “Does knowing Nature mean knowing natural laws like gravitation, etc, or something more subtle?”

Guruji: “Think of it this way: Let’s say you made friends with somebody, so there will be rapport between your nature and his nature. You don’t necessarily have to figure out how his finger is working or the coffee that he just drank how is it getting digested inside him. Those things are no longer important. It’s a feeling! When somebody starts feeling the nature of mother Earth, for them it’s not important why did this tree grow and how did it grow. If I know Her, I’ll accept the tree as part of Her. Will not add my own conditions that it should like grow this and not like that. When we accept Nature and start understanding its beauty, we’ll accept it in its totality. That’s intimacy.

“Say you fall in love with someone. You won’t process how frequently she’s blinking or how many hair does she have on her head or show fast they are growing. If she sneezed, at how many miles per hour the wind went out of her nostrils (laughs). You’ll accept her in totality. If we are tuned-in or intimate with Earth’s nature or have fallen in love with Her, we won’t question these things. And if I’m tuned enough, may be I’d prefer living in a cave which Nature has made Herself, instead of corrupting Her landscape. When there’s the feeling of love, there’s no feeling to dominate, only acceptance. This is true friendship, it’s very rare but must happen.

“This is an axe on all established religions. Always remember these words:

“कब तक पूजें पदचिन्ह किसी के
चलें हम भी, छूने क्षितिज को “
(Why keep worshiping someone else’s footprints? Let’s go ourselves, reach out and touch the horizon!)

“We should realize that these possibilities are open for everybody – from a Pygmy to a modern American.

“I’ve seen we have more open and concentrated discussions on the phone. May be telepathy works better this way since it’s telephone (laughs).”

* * * * * *
Guruji: “It’s very cold over here these days.”

Me: “I like cold weather.”

Guruji: “I like cold too. But it’s also fun to say that the cold weather is killing us (laughs). It’s a different kind of pleasure to whine like this – it’s a pure Indian thing. Even after eating the choicest food in a party, people complain they are going to die that they’ve eaten so much (laughs). See, even when somebody falls in love, they say ‘he died on that girl’ [Ed: sorry, no easy way to translate that in English]. “The cold weather is killing us”, “we are dying in the hot summer” – we are very much in love with death, so in every situation we discover that word. May be we understand the love affair between life and death. Even death is a poetic experience.”

“It takes time to realize how much love life holds for death. Doesn’t life just run all life long in order to finally unite with death? Real beauty is born only in the moments of union. Moments of union are always beautiful!”
[From Guruji’s yogic commentary on Srimad Bhagvat Gita]

“The mother of our water-tanker driver died a few days back. I tell you it was such a beautiful death! She was hail and hearty – no health problems. One day, after some household chores, she asked her daughter-in-law to prepare her bath. After her bath, when she got up, she suddenly felt dizzy and fell down. When people came to help her up, she asked for her husband to call him quickly. When he came, she was lying on the bed. When the husband entered the room, she said to him, joined her hands, ‘Our companionship was only for this long. I don’t think I’ll survive. If you can save me, save me, otherwise please forgive any transgressions. I’m leaving.’ Then she died!

“Can you imagine how deep tuning and love the husband and wife must have had, how much she must have cared for him? Both of them were saintly – I’ve met with both of them. I’m proud to say that I’ve met them. Even the big-shot sadhus haven’t died like this. It was a conscious death – within 5-10 minutes everything was over. This is true love! Even after becoming grandparents, she was asking him with folded hands to forget any faults. If not them, who do you call saints! In India, there are so many unsung heroes, genuine people. You’ll find them all over the place.

“There was a similar story about a temple priest who died about 2 years back. It was also very touching – we all became emotional after hearing that. He was a priest in Radha Kund. For some time he was feeling sick. One afternoon, when he was doing the puja, somebody came to tell him that his wife had just died. The priest said, ‘She’s gone? All right, I’m coming.’ He finished his ceremony, went home, laid down next to her, took her hand, and died then and there!”

[20110324-3] Dated: Jan, 2002

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

Shambhavi Mudra

[Continuing from an discussion during Vasant Navratri 2003]

Guruji: “It’s an altogether different feeling today. Partly due to the navratri puja celebrations which already gives a high feeling but also because of something else. Today I mastered Shambhavi Mudra.

“It happened this morning. It is the final outcome of Rudragranthi Bheda1 – the last stage. And just imagine, I had mastered Khechari Mudra almost 18yrs back – even more than that, and it took this long to master Shambhavi Mudra. In the meantime, so many things happened – different experiences, stages to realize..”

Q: “So was it the final frontier, guruji?”

Guruji: “It looked like the final frontier before I mastered it, but today it looks like the beginning of a totally new thing. But yogically, it is supposed to be pretty big. As the texts2 say, ‘While Veda, Sastra, and purana are like common prostitutes, Shambhavi Mudra is impervious like a daughter-in-law”. And now I have realized that it is not a technique, but actually a result of your practice. Yoga has very profound secrets.

“Today feels like a new beginning. The beginning of Rahu maha-dasha (astrological time period associated with each planet, 18yrs for Rahu) has been good it seems. Since the maha-dasha started, people have been saying that my practice will increase and will touch new heights. Now I feel that the next 18years will pass smoothly in practice.
This must be the first time you have heard somebody saying that they achieved Shambhavi Mudra.”

Q: “Yeah, absolutely! I have never heard it before. I have just read its description in Purana Purusha and realized that it is not a very common knowledge among people.”

Guruji: “Everybody who has read hatha yoga texts knows about it, but experiencing the state is something else. After achieving this mudra, you develop a complete command over the rise and fall of prana (life force).”

Q: “So does this mean you have completed your kriya practice now?”

Guruji: “Completed? I feel it has begun now. There’s no longer a final destination. It’s as if there’s a long road ahead; you walk some and you see some more. Thinking from an normally ambitious point of view, it is a pretty big achievement though. All the books have gone completely silent after talking about Shambhavi Mudra. But those are just the books that have gone silent; I feel the practice continues to go on and builds up new challenges and milestones.
Now I am excited to see what happens next.

Q: “This is the greatest news so far. Congratulations, Guruji!”

Guruji: “Thank you. Yes it’s a great news, with perfect timing with navdurga celebrations. I think it was building up for quite some time, say the last two years. The built up finally lead to its climax today. As soon as I sat for practice after the puja, it happened. Just like that. And I also have a full control of it now.”

Recorded on : Apr 4th, 2003, 11AM IST.

[Later conversation]
Q: “Guruji , I read the description of Shambhavi Mudra in Gheranda Samhita.”

Guruji: “What does it say?”

“It says that the yogi who masters Shambhavi Mudra is a living Adinath and Brahma himself! And that description has been given only for Shambhavi Mudra”

Guruji: “Yes, that is the description of the result of Shambhavi Mudra. I think I remember the slokas as well ‘नेत्रांजन समालोक्य आत्मारामं निरीक्षयेत ..’.

“It is also true that this mudra forms itself. It is not a technique, but rather a result of the practice. It builds up with regular practice, reaches its climax, and then finally displays itself. The constant high/intoxicated feeling from before has now increased tenfold. It increased since that day only.

“One thing I’m observing is that we practice many techniques to raise the life force up, but after Shambhavi Mudra, the prana stays up on its own. Its an amazing thing.”

Q: “Guruji, what you have written about Rudragranthi Bhedha is that the life force is offered and burnt in itself.”

Guruji: “Yes, and it can be said that this is the result of that, offering prana in the sacrificial fire of itself.”

“Have you heard of anybody else who has achieved this level in recent history?”

Guruji: “I have only heard of Lahiri Mahasaya who achieved Shambhavi Mudra in the recent history. Nobody has talked or discussed about it after that. Only Lahiri Mahasaya had written some comments about it in his diaries. Yogananda Paramhansa reproduced those comments in his ‘Autobiography of a Yogi’. No other guru has claimed experiencing it. It’s a rare occurrence. But I am sure there are other people as well.

“I believe that now, slowly, my disciples will also achieve Shambhavi Mudra. It’s a breakthrough.”

“So the sadhana (practice) will continue after after achieving Shambhavi Mudra?”

Sadhana is a never ending process. Okay, tell me, does a person stop experiencing new things after he becomes a president? Or after the completion of education, does a person stop learning new things? Something new always keeps on coming up. There is no dearth of levels to achieve.”

[20090802] Conversation recorded on : Apr 4th, 2003 and ” “


  1. Rudragranthi Bheda, also known as Mooladhar Granthi Bheda – opening the Mooladhar knot. See the 4th step for more details.
  2. Gheranda Samhita, 3rd chapter, 65 verse.

Meera Bai, Original Vaishnava Lifestyle, Om

[Continued from a previous conversation]

Guruji: “All the shrines and ashrams Yogananda Paramhansa built are beautifully placed in natural surroundings. Really remarkable, though I have just heard about them, never visited them personally. There is some atmosphere there! Also, if you compare their [accomplished yogis] photographs from their young age and their old age, you’ll find they looked more beautiful in their old age. It is as if they were getting more beautiful as they were getting older. This happens with everyone who practices yoga. Don’t you feel some change in yourself? You look very different now then when you had started doing yoga.
These days I am getting a lot of compliments for my skin. It feels good to hear such things in old age (laughs).”

Q: “Have you heard Kishori Amonkar’s Meera bhajans, for example, “Mharo Pranam”? Aren’t they beautiful?”

Guruji: “Yes, they are amazing. They were also divine people. Not the singers; they are just repeating what has been left behind, but the original people were wonderful! Just imagine the feeling Meera Bai must have had when she sung those songs, when even today, after centuries have passed, when we hear those songs they are able to evoke such strong emotions inside us. Have you heard the poetry of Neeraj? “Karwaan guzar gaya, gubaar dekhate rahe” (the caravan had passed, we caught only the dust). Rafi has also sung this song, but he could never produce the same effect as when Neeraj used to recite it, even though Rafi was a great singer in his own right. Similarly, Harivansh Rai Bachchan was a great hit when he recited Madhushala on stage. Manna Dey has also sung those poems now but it doesn’t create the same magic.

“Now keeping these examples in mind, try to imagine the sensation in the atmosphere when Meera Bai, Tulsidas, etc, used to sing their compositions. And that kind of ambiance was created because they were sung with the actual true feelings of the composers themselves, and were not just plain recreations of the originals. People used to get lost and overwhelmed! These days people have become millionaires by cashing on their compositions, but the true were those who lived centuries ago. They were truly exemplary.”

Q: “Why did Meera Bai take birth? Was it to set an example of some kind as she was a great devotee of God from a very early age?”

Guruji: “First of all, as she was born in a royal family she can’t be regarded as an ordinary soul. It won’t be wrong to say that her emotional state of mind was much heightened as compared to any ordinary person. And I strongly believe that the level of her devotion cannot happen without a direct experience of some kind. She definitely had some direct experience in her childhood. Only after a direct experience can the live of a person change so dramatically. You simply cannot cultivate this level of devotion. The way you cannot cultivate love, you cannot cultivate devotion. It just happens, and when such an extraordinary incident happens to somebody, history remembers them!

“Such experiences are always kept secret. She never propagated her experience. She just stayed in her bhava (divine emotion), and she is still remembered as a great soul. I really like her. Meerabai, Tulsidas, Soordas, all of them wrote extraordinary compositions. They suffered in life because of their devotion. People who fall in deep emotions, like Majnu, who fell deeply in love, may get ruined materially but still leave a deep impact. These people were not happy even on the family front. This is a striking similarity between Meera Bai and Tulsidas; Meera Bai’s husband Bhojraj died very early and she gave birth to a stillborn baby girl. These incidents in life must certainly have resulted in a lot of bottled-up emotions. Tulsidas’s wife used to mock him, and his son Tarapati died in his childhood. It was only after these incidents that their poetry truly developed rasa (taste, emotion) which was absolutely miraculous. These people certainly had seen God. It is impossible to become a poet of this level all of a sudden without a blessing from God.

“I never believed in these things earlier but after coming to Vraj (almost 11 years in Oct 2004), I have since realized that these divine mysteries we hear about do exist. There is truth in people seeing God or experiencing some kind of contact. An ordinary person can’t even imagine what those people must have seen or experienced. He’ll consider those men and women as crazy or insane.

“People who are at an advanced stage in Yoga practice experience it for sure, and even those people who have reached the zenith of any one emotion experience it as well. This is what we remark in India as kripa (blessing). Who confers it, to whom, when, and how it happens remains unknown. There are no set of rules to predict it. It’s just the matter of purity of heart.

“Now let’s consider Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. He had an experience in Gaya when he was looking at the feet of lord Vishnu. After that, he got the darshan of lord Vishnu and Balram. People generally say these were divine visions, but I feel they were actually the experience of seeing God face to face (darshan). How amazing it is that the whole Vrindawan transformed into a vaishnava pilgrimage when Chaitanya Mahaprabhu arrived here! I would never believed it, but after living in Govardhan for a long time now, my awareness has definitely increased. I do feel it’s true that when he used to do kirtan (sing devotional songs), the entire nature used to sing with him! Imagine the beauty around with the birds singing alongside with him and the trees dancing on his rhythm. The entire nature would get tuned to the melody of his devotion (“saara vatavaran kirtan-may ho jata tha“) and sing alongside “Hare Rama Hare Krishna” with him. That effect can still be felt in and around Vraj.”

Q: “Then guruji what exactly is the feeling of the people of ISKCON who get overwhelmed while singing devotional songs. Are they also spiritually accomplished?”

Guruji: “See, this is again the same difference between the original and subsequent followers, as we discussed earlier. ISKCON is an extension of Gaudia sect, which is a cult of Bengali gaudias started by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. The life-style of original vaishnavas as I have observed was extremely simple and were forever distant from commerce. But now-a-days, with ISKCON, the original culture has gotten buried under something entirely different and new.

“The gauriyas who went to stay in ashrams in an early age had to follow a very strict discipline. They had to chant “Hare Ram Hare Ram Ram Ram Hare Hare, Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare” 125,000 times every day. It didn’t matter how long it’d take, 4hrs, 6hrs, or even more. Now a person who is doing these many chants everyday and following an extreme diet along with offering his devotion and work to God, how can he not develop strong bhava (divine emotion) in his heart?

“The second kind of vaishnavas are grihasta (householders) who far exceed in number the ones living in ashrams (hermits). They mainly belong to the Bengal region. I am telling you, the way they talk with you is so sweet, they’ll win over your heart! And they won’t even try to convert you! You will find the sweetest people in that region. The gauriya cult was the most beautiful region ever before the coming of ISKCON, and it still is beautiful as the original vaishnavas do not have any strong ties with ISKCON. Only those vaishnavas who are materially inclined get in touch with ISKCON. Others are the homeless gauriyas who cook food for them. So I must say that some of the principles are still followed in ISKCON, like only the gauriyas can cook food for them. But otherwise the simplicity in the lifestyle, which was the main characteristic of vaishnavas, is nowhere to be seen in ISKCON followers. You should definitely observe that and you will love it.

“I still remember a family from my childhood (around 30yrs back). The man of the family was a vaishnava and lived in Vrindawan. His son was going to America for his PhD in Atomic Physics. They used to have around 15-20 cows and they fed them raw barley everyday. They would make their roti (Indian bread) out of the raw barley grains passed in the the cow-dung! They’d separate the grains from the dung, clean them, dry them, and grind them into flour to make rotis. This is such an amazing thing to know! I didn’t understand it when I was a child but now when I look back I am awestruck by their simplicity. Imagine the boy, who was so well educated and going aboard for higher education, who used to carry hay along with his wife for the cows and clean their dung. You couldn’t guess how highly educated they were by looking at their simplistic lifestyle. They were the nicest people I have ever met in my life! They also had this everyday routine of doing a certain chant. The father of that boy had become a complete renunciate, and thus he was following the strict rules of the vaishnavas who become hermits after following the life of a householder. Even today I get emotional when I think about him. This is what I call real life! So full of simplicity, having no demands at all! The old man is no more now and I am not sure about the whereabouts of his son. But I am highly confident that his roots and principles were so strong that he must be doing good wherever he is living right now and following the same kind of simple life even now. He went abroad for 5 years along with his wife, and both of them were highly educated.

“So this was the real beauty of the original vaishnavas, their utter simplicity. Now with outside influence, that beauty is getting lost and is not seen very often. But even today if you go visit some of the vaishnava villages, you’ll love it there. Nadiya village and a few areas in Vraj still have that feeling of pure simplicity and devotion. ISKCON is just a fashionable part of it that became popular.

“Like that, there’s a place here in Vraj called Tatiya Sthan, founded by Swami Haridas. I have also met their previous mahant (leader, principal) who is not living anymore. This place is still what it was 500-600 years back when it was founded. Even today they don’t have any electricity or water pipes, and every single tree is very old and maintained to look the same as before. They are also following the same routine as laid down by their founder. There is a very positive and weird feeling about the place. You feel completely at peace in your heart the moment you step inside that place. Amazing stuff!”

Q: “Guruji, how could they follow such strict discipline?”

Guruji: “It’s a matter of love. The people of Tatiya Sthana still live as sadhus (hermits) and their discipline is very different from the householder vaishnavas. The man from my childhood I told you about was following all the principles of householders before he took renunciation. He was married, educated, kept a job, and supported his family. But after he took renunciation, he followed the rules of the hermit stage. The brilliance and peace on his face was just amazing to see, and I still remember it. It was simply wonderful.

“I understand ISKCON has propagated itself a lot, and has built beautiful showcase kind of structures as their temples, but I don’t find that mesmerizing beauty in it that the original had.

“But then again there is another interesting thing. There are a lot of foreigners living in Vrindavan who have decided to take their last breath there. They have come to Vrindavan to die only! So how can I say that ISKCON followers don’t have any spiritual feelings? You’ll find good people in them also. But the commercial majority in ISKCON is what I find unappealing. Formerly there was no commerce in the name of Krishna. The devotees were simply devotees.”

Q: “Guruji, don’t you sometimes feel that our present condition is the result of our past life and karma, so why should you help us out?”

Guruji: “See, there are two sides of the same coin. The past life influences your birth, like the family you are born into, and the kind of physical body you carry. But at the same time its also due to the past karma that you have come to me to learn Kriya Yoga. Not everybody find their way here.

“The spiritual bond that forms between me and my disciples during initiation flows the energy of whatever is happening with me to them as well. This is the most interesting thing. I didn’t realize it earlier but now I can see it very clearly.
There is also a flip side to this situation. There are a lot of new people coming these days who are trying to become my disciple because they think that their financial and family problems will improve after becoming my disciple.. But I don’t entertain such people. The objective with such people is completely twisted as none of my old disciples ever came to me for becoming millionaires. They had a genuine motivation to learn yoga. But even then, their situation in life substantially improved.

“It all depends on the motive. The people who come to me with a wrong motive end up spoiling my mood, but a genuine person’s life definitely improves. There is this man who came to me from Delhi – he is a disciple of mine. He was here on Shivaratri. His daughter’s finger got completely ripped off – it got stuck somewhere and she tried to pull it off which teared the ligaments and the bones came out. She had her exams after 15 days and the doctor wasn’t too hopeful of the finger ever recovering. He told this to me when he came here. I couldn’t give a lot of attention to what he said as there were a lot of people around. I was in a very spirited mood, so I just said “Don’t worry, everything will be fine”. When he took her daughter for a change of bandage, the doctor was shocked and told them that the finger was absolutely okay and it didn’t need any further bandages! The girl wrote her exam papers with her own hands and didn’t face any problem at all in writing. She has come here to visit me and I’m noticing that her finger does show some swelling but all the movements have restored. The vibrations of the discipline I follow here in the academy flow to all my disciples. Even though I’ve always been careful about my routines and discipline, ever since I have understood this principle, I’ve become extra careful. So many new discoveries are happening slowly and gradually.”

Q: “For example, OM that appeared in Shivalinga?”

Guruji: “Now that the OM has appeared in the Shivalinga, it’d be interesting to see what happens next. It becomes visible when we offer milk to Shivalinga through the bull’s horn, and due to the accumulation of the milk the form gets revealed. It appears as if it is engraved on it. It’s nice, but you can’t stare at it for long as the eyes starts warming up and they turn blood red, and you also start feeling drowsy after a while. The entire mental activity kind of stops when staring at it.”

Q: “Guruji, when does a person start understanding OM? Is it at the highest developed state of the mind?”

Guruji: “Definitely. It is the symbol/word of God, and I feel that this is how Shiva-ji appears in form himself. The Shivalinga is already considered His form, and now with OM appearing on it, it is as if Shiva-ji has put His stamp over His own form. Another amusing thing is that the OM looks quite similar to the one showing in the MRI scans of my brain.”

“So how can we interpret this?”

“Well, I am not able to interpret it as of now. All I can quote here is a phrase in Hindi which describes it beautifully, “sab unki kripa hai yeh” (this is all His grace). I think I need more discussions with people so we can find an answer to it. You should also think more about it so we can discuss.”

“May be it’s date of appearance has some significance?”

“May be. We do see an onset of fighting happening all around, and since Shiva-ji does the dance of destruction (tandava), there might be a relation here. If the fights are happening with the will of God, it won’t stop any time soon. Another important thing to note here is the fight with the third biggest oil producing country in the world precisely on the third day of the third week of the third month of the third year (17 march2003). It feels as if some magician was consulted to plan this. It all feels very strange.”

Q: “Here (USA) in a day-to-day life, it is very easy to ignore all these things. Nobody thinks of what is driving things actually.”

Guruji: “Yes, but with growing awareness around the world, it is getting impossible to ignore underlying causes. After all, the entire humanity is one single unit, though we are distributed all over the planet. If something happens in one place, its consequences will be borne everywhere.
I agree that an average person is not aware of this connectivity but it does exist. If you get stung by a thorn in your foot, the entire body feels the impulse which doesn’t even spare the brain. You can not ignore your foot then.

“And I feel this is just the leftover vibrations of Mahabharat. It also happened in the Middle East region, and now it is it is now being taken down again with a war. As you know, when all the vegetation of an area gets burnt due to very high temperature, it gets converted into petroleum. So that is what happened in that area and all that was left was petroleum and sand (desert). So peace will get restored in the world only after the entire petroleum stored in this area will get burnt and destroyed. There will be a sudden peace after that. What happened, does this worry you? (laughs).”

[20090802] Conversation recorded on : March 29,2003

Mysterious Gwalior: Amara Mountain

Guruji: “.. If that place appears so desolated today, can you imagine how would it have been a hundred years ago! In fact, there are a lot of such deserted places around Gwalior, discovered and inhabited by people who were seeking solitude. This reminds of an interesting experience I had at Amara mountain in Gwalior.

“In our college days, me and a friend of mine used to leave home in the morning with lunch pack and a water bottle, and roam all day on the mountains to return home in the evening. The friend’s name was Padam Upaddhyaya. One of those days, we went climbing up the Amara mountain above the Gupteswara temple. We climbed for more than 3-4 hours straight. When it got too hot in the afternoon, we decided to climb down to go back home. There was a groove made by dried water stream climbing down the mountain to Tigara road so we decided to walk alongside that. By the way, we saw white crabs and small turtles in that area. Climbing down, we saw a small cave. It had Aum painted on the wall and a trident stuck in the ground outside. There was also a dhuni (sacred fire place) nearby which seemed to indicate there must have been a sadhu living in that cave, but we didn’t see anybody around.

“Climbing further down, almost half-way down from where the road was also visible, we came across a small room – about 6×8 feet and made of stone blocks. Since we were very tired and were not in good spirits because of the heat, we decided to stop by and check it out. Looking inside the stone room, we saw a old man sitting cross-legged in one corner. He had a long white moustache and white beard, and his hair were twisted in a knot at the top. His hair and his beard were normal but his moustache was exceptionally long! And hee had really large eyes with which he was glaring at us. We were a little taken aback because of his appearance when we peered inside the room. But anyway, we sat down at the doorsteps and asked him: ‘Baba, can we have some water?’. There was a earthen pot in the room and a copper lota (tumbler) next to it.What he did next was interesting. You remember how beggars with their legs amputated move? He didn’t break his cross-legged position, but moved with the support of his hands to the water pot and fetched us water, all the while constantly glaring at us. After drinking water, we asked his leave but he gave absolutely no response except constantly glaring at us. We left and reached home at around 4pm in the evening.

“Around 5 or 6 days later, the strangeness of the encounter struck us. I said, let’s go find him again. Starting that day, for almost about a month we kept trying to find that stone-room but were never able to. We found the groove on the mountain along which we had climbed down, the cave with aum and the trident, but the room made of stone blocks had simply disappeared! On the spot where the room was supposed to be, there was plain mountain and nothing else. We had taken bearing climbing down from the top and the path we had taken earlier was very clear as well, and we tried many times even going back and forth but there was no sign of the room.

“We never figured out whether it was a spirit or a siddha who was practicing his austerities on Amara mountain and perchance we got to meet him. At that time we were college students so we had no knowledge about these things. Now it feels it must have been a spirit. Amara mountain is a very strange place in some ways.”

[20090801] Recorded: June 18, 2004