Meeting the Master in Shirdi

martin-simonovski

By Martin Simonovski

Continuing from the Pune leg. The morning after the sleepless night spent exchanging business ideas with Palak, we slowly started to take the luggage out of the complex of Mohanji Baba’s Ashram. A long trip of several hours to Shirdi awaited us.

After the ride, we finally arrived at the hotel Jivanta in Shirdi. We left the luggage with the receptionist where Milica met us. Later, we headed together with Barbara to the hall where the retreat was taking place. While walking I noticed that there were posters on the walls notifying people, “Please maintain silence”.

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As soon as I entered the hall, tears started brimming over. The energy was indescribably strong and I started crying even more. Mohanji Baba was glowing with such a great intensity that it could melt even the toughest heart. Love overflowed completely. When he turned around, I felt as if the sun came down on the Earth to bathe us in love and bliss. At the same moment, I felt another sun rising straight out from my heart and shining. The tears didn’t stop. That was the strongest energy that I had felt so far.

The participants who were present spoke about their experiences with Mohanji Baba. I heard many stories that made my heart melt even more. The hall didn’t have room for anything but love. I could write a book about this moment and still be unable to describe the energy that was present in that room. Many people shared their experiences about how Mohanji Baba had changed their lives completely. Experiences were shared wholeheartedly. Even today while writing this text, tears start to drop at the sheer thought of me being present in such a place full of love. With every thought of those moments, I go back to the paradise which could only be ruled by love.

After the participants shared their experiences, I went to say hello to Mohanji Baba. After the certificates were distributed, we went to the dining hall along with the other participants. The food was very delicious, as usual. 😀 After lunch, I settled myself in the hotel room and volunteered to help out with the preparation for the event to be held the following day. So, I went downstairs where the public satsang was held. Along with Mohanji Baba, there was a special guest – the chief priest of the Shirdi Sai Baba temple – Sulakhe Maharaj. As usual, the participants of the public satsang asked questions and Mohanji Baba answered them in his direct style laced with wit and humor. At the public satsang, there was also a music release of Mohanji Baba’s Sahasranaamavali (1008 names of Mohanji Baba) and Ashtotari (108 names of Mohanji Baba). Before the music release by Sulakhe Maharaj, Taiji shared her experience of writing Sahasranaamavali and Ashtotari. The energy during the satsang was very strong and several times I felt an urge to fall asleep. My eyelids were closing by themselves. I needed a coffee. 😀

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After the satsang, I went to taste the amazing food at Ahimsa Vegan. During my stay in Shirdi, I had the opportunity to taste most of their menu. I recommend all of you to try the food there whenever you get a chance. After dinner at the vegan restaurant, I continued with helping out with volunteer work for next day’s event. I had energy to even work until the next night. The following morning, I headed to the Consciousness Kriya event after breakfast in the vegan restaurant.

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After the Consciousness Kriya event, we went to buy VIP passes to visit the Samadhi (final resting place) of Shirdi Sai Baba. The passes allow one to save time by bypassing the serpentine queues of people waiting to see Baba. Together with Zlate and an employee of the hotel, we went to the Sansthan office. It was really cool to ride on a motorbike with two other people, especially when you are in the middle of the “sandwich”. 😀 Previously, I had only seen this kind of picture on the internet but not in the real life 😀

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Before we entered the Samadhi, we took our shoes off and left them outside, as is customary for temples in India. We waited for the door to open so that we could enter inside. As I was getting closer to the Samadhi, I started feeling a very strong energy. As if the energy was not from this planet. I don’t know if Sai Baba was present or not but the place was a “nuclear plant”. The strong energy was circulating in every corner of the temple. I don’t have words to describe this divine energy. I recommend everyone to visit this Samadhi whenever you get the chance. The transformation is inevitable. After the aarati, I tried the Prasadam (consecrated offering) of Sai Baba. As we went back to the hotel, I enjoyed sharing experiences while walking with other devotees of Mohanji Baba. That  night, I had too much energy so I used it to help with volunteer work.

5The next morning, together with Mohanji Baba and the rest of the participants of the retreat we went for a walk in Shirdi. We walked and ventured to the same places that were once graced by the great Shirdi Sai Baba. While walking next to Mohanji Baba, I felt as if I had the power to lift an elephant. I had no idea what to do with so much energy. A couple of people came around us begging for money to buy food. Instead of giving them money, Mohanji Baba sent them to a nearby restaurant and paid for the bill.

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After we finished the walk, we went back to the hotel to checkout. Immediately after the aarati, we left for Ganeshpuri. On the way to Ganeshpuri, we visited a temple of Sai Baba. The Swami responsible for the temple also took care of over 1200 children. These children were orphaned because their parents (who were farmers) committed suicide due to rising debts. We were welcomed wholeheartedly and received many gifts. Another group of people came to the temple accompanying a palkhi (a palanquin with Shirdi Sai Baba). The group had walked for several days with the palanquin to reach Shirdi and were taking a brief rest in the temple before proceeding to Shirdi.

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After we arrived at Ganeshpuri, we visited the Samadhi of Bhagavan Nityananda. As soon as I sat to meditate, I started feeling deep peace and lost my existence for several moments. It is very hard to use words to describe the experiences that I had in this temples. That is why sometimes I use hyperbole to try to explain their essence, even though sometimes it is not enough. After the meditation, we visited several other temples to before heading to Mumbai.

When we arrived at the apartment of Madhu and Preethi, we were welcomed as Gods. They had prepared wonderful food in abundance. In India, guests are treated as Gods and their home was no exception. Their endeavor to make us happy and satisfied made them very happy. It was this Indian custom that taught me that happiness is in giving. I would like to thank Madhu and Preethi for the wonderful book “The way to home” that gave me greater awareness on the main reason for my trip to India. Thank you. I recommend it from my heart to anyone who is in search for themselves.

Our journey to Chennai started the following day and I will share that experience in the next blog.

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