By Palak Mehta
It’s not possible to stop time. We either move with it or stagnate. There are so many lessons that can be missed out and so many subtleties that fade away if not caught, documented or remembered. That’s exactly the stage I am at right now. Time is moving me and I have no control over it. I have no control to stop, relax or express gratitude. It’s very easy to forget the truth, you know. Firstly, we don’t understand the truth or see it. Secondly, if we get to see even a glimpse of it through a God-given opportunity, how does one prevent one’s mind from polluting it? What if distractions or emotions take the better of me and I miss this golden opportunity of lifetimes to stay with the truth. If I don’t stop for a moment now, it will all fade away becoming faint first and then non-existent eventually.
That’s why this blog is more for my sake than for anyone else. I need this to hold on to the glimpse of truth which has been shown to me and not let it fade away. This is my story – some pieces have been difficult to accept, some have overwhelmed me with love, and some have highlighted my weaknesses. If I could go back to my childhood and envision a life for myself, it wouldn’t have been half as magical as it is right now. The only reason for that is MOHANJI who many know as a person or a Master but to me has been a personification of the God energy itself.
Why is life so deeply satisfying now? Why do I feel there is a purpose to life? Why am I not embarrassed anymore to be myself rather than what’s expected from a traditional Indian girl? Why am I not disempowered? Read on and you will find some crazy adventures, some really tough times and most importantly some ‘subtle showers of enormous grace’. It’s that grace that has been hugely at play. An atheist would not believe it, a dubious mind would question it. But heck, this grace is so real for me because the experiences were so tangible. I feel that even the human mind cannot deny it. It’s simply what happened. It is my experience.
When I was in college, a seemingly “random” decision led to the most important meeting which gave meaning and purpose to my life. My friend had invited me for a meditation during a phase where life had become a rollercoaster. Uncontrollable challenges and mishaps bottled up with emotions and expectations. I had a very good childhood and my parents gave me everything I wanted, my sister had and has loved me throughout, friends have always been there by my side, my boyfriend at the time had always stood by me. Around the time I was in college, things began to get scary, to say the least. Relationships around me started turning ugly, friends couldn’t understand what I was going through, my boyfriend stopped supporting me, my family was going through their own troubles. I was a wreck! I did everything – from reiki to pranic healing to writing down my feelings and detaching, everything was a momentary relief. With each hard blow to my expectations, I kept getting disappointed, hurt and detached.
It was at that time my friend told me about Mohanji and a meditation that was going to happen. I looked at his blog but my reaction was neutral. When the date for the meditation came near, I had caught a bad flu and was extremely sick, weak and bedridden. But I had a hunch that I must go and attend this meditation. I got a nice vibe about the event – very subtle and not overpowering. Believe me, when I tell you, I suddenly got the energy to get up from my bed, walk down the staircase and go for the meditation. I was delayed by 15 minutes and told my friend Samira that I might miss the meditation. She replied and said that the organizers had just announced that they would wait for a bit more because more people were expected. Upon reaching, the first person I saw was Mohanji sitting outside the venue. He smiled at me and we exchanged a namaste (a traditional Hindu greeting with folded hands). I didn’t think much about Him after that and went straight inside. The meditation was a nice experience. We were all blessed with Shaktipat by Mohanji. We got his eye card which I kept in my wallet.
I moved on in life and forgot all about it. I never made an attempt to get in touch with Mohanji’s team. However, as time passed by and I looked back one of the days, I realised how my life had completely changed in the past 10 months. Not only did I get physical answers from Mohanji to my questions but my blockages were also removed in these months. Blockages that had been slowing me down for 4-5 years or more! Situations had completely changed. I myself was more empowered to spontaneously detach from things that didn’t serve me well. Now I had done other meditations and healing too but I knew it very strongly that attending that one meditation with someone called Mohanji changed my life.
I just didn’t feel the need to do other techniques, or run around looking for answers. I was spontaneously losing interest in college and superficial relationships. I wanted to find out more about myself, my purpose in life, etc. My yoga teacher told me that I should search for a Guru. I actually smirked, A Guru, how, who, where? I never actively looked for anyone. More questions sprouted out, yet no one’s answer ever satisfied me. A couple of times I thought of messaging Mohanji but doubted, ‘What if He’s very religious and biased?’ Haha! It sounds funny to think about it now. 🙂 Finally, as more months passed by, I decided to message Mohanji on Facebook and ask him a question. His answer shocked me. It was a simple question but this reply cannot come from a human mind. I was certain. I was in awe and instantly in love with Him. What I felt was God. My creator. It’s the best feeling in the world.
I met Mohanji in 2009. My perception of life has completely changed since then. The tests of life continue unabated but I feel so lucky and blessed that I have His guidance to guide me at each and every stage of my personal and spiritual transformation. Mohanji always says that the level of acceptance of everyday life is a sign of spiritual transformation. He has given us the courage to accept life as it comes. A few years after my graduation, around 2012, I had a deep urge to move out of Delhi – the city I had grown up in. I was getting stagnated and saturated. I wanted fresh air. The energy in Delhi just didn’t suit me anymore. I was feeling miserable and depressed. I just had to get out and find myself again. In India, it was uncommon for girls to live independently away from their family. Most people objected to this idea while very few people close to me were supportive of my decision.
I took a decision to move to Pune. I only had enough money to survive a month or two. I had packed my bags and decided to just go along with what life would bring. Needless to say, I was quite anxious to be in a new city, with no friends, family, job or much savings. The future was uncertain. I shared my decision with Mohanji. Like a perfect mirror, He did not interfere in my journey. He asked me not to worry and ensured me that there would be a decent place to sleep and the protection and food will also come. These blessings from Him and the tradition of the white Masters pacified me quite a bit.
Mohanji mentioned about the Pune ashram. He had never visited that ashram. Since His activities in Pune were less, it was unlikely for Him to go there as well. Since it was unutilized, He had chosen to keep it closed to avoid running expenses, etc. Nobody was staying there at that time and He offered me to stay there. It was a rent-free space where I would be practically alone that would help me settle down. This was a big blessing because I was being given a full-fledged house without any cost and, most importantly, without conditions. Mohanji never asked me for anything in return for this gift.
Now that I was on my own, I had to instantly get a job. It was a choiceless situation and I couldn’t afford any delays. I had actually lied to family and friends in Delhi that I already had a job in Pune so that they won’t panic and keep calling me all the time. I started to feel nervous and anxious about the future. Everything was uncertain. On the very first day that I landed at Pune, I went for an interview for a teacher’s position in a school. The kids were speaking Marathi and that scared me even more since I didn’t understand the language. 🙂 I looked for more job opportunities. I applied for the position of a senior fine arts teacher and had a particular salary in mind. However, when I was interviewed, they said that position was not available anymore and offered me the position for a junior fine arts teacher with a much lesser salary. I was quite bummed. I thought to myself, How am I going to survive? I was not at all confident teaching junior classes plus needed the salary of a senior teacher.
I came back home depressed and decided to call Mohanji even though I was not sure if I would get him on the phone. He himself picked up my call. I was crying. He asked me what the problem was. I explained how nervous I was and worried about my future and getting a secure job. He asked me a straight question. “What is your expectation of salary? Remember, you have no cost for stay, electricity, and water”. That was a huge shot of awareness that certain things in my life were taken care of. Suddenly He said “Go back to your employer and tell them that you are ready to join. I shall do what I can”. I did exactly that. After hanging up with him, I felt waves of peace and calmness. The Master always does His job! I decided to take it easy. Mohanji had removed the fear from me.
Later on, I found out that Mohanji was en route to Badrinath with two companions and they had to return back from Joshimath due to inclement weather. It had been all over the news. There were huge cloudbursts which caused flash floods in the river Ganga leading to landslides which destroyed the roads. Nobody knew the last time when the Ganga was so furious. Close to 50,000 people had been swept away. Mohanji was stuck in the floods in Joshimath in North India when I called Him. Can you believe it? And I was worried about such petty things.
Anyway, in a few days, I decided to follow up, as suggested by Mohanji, on the interview I had given as a junior fine arts teacher. When I went to give my final round of interview, I was shocked to be offered a job for the senior most fine arts teacher! When I went to pick up my appointment order, I was truly surprised to see the salary printed exactly the same amount that I had told Mohanji as my expected salary. I could not believe my eyes. Mohanji casually said he would do what he can. But, he did exactly what I had asked for! But not before making me aware of the grace at work and the blessings that have come my way. My heart was filled with gratitude.
Mohanji works subtly. You will not even know that He is working. He is unassuming. You cannot catch Him at work. He never promises. But He delivers if you have unshakeable faith in Him. He allows you to be with Him or leave Him. But, He maintains availability of His energy. Energetically, He is always available to each and every one who loves Him. And He indeed does His job. I know that Mohanji has been literally living out of a suitcase ever since He left his job – traveling and moving relentlessly. He gave me the stability of a place even when He Himself had never been in one place physically for months if not years. As I write this, I realise His sacrifice for my sake. Something that He does all the time for all of us but never displays and, most often, even plays down.
I have to share another miraculous experience. After almost 2 years of working in the school, I had stopped enjoying it and decided to leave the job. I was fine with leaving it but didn’t know what I could do instead. All good paying schools had the same restrictions and I was always into alternative education. The thought of joining another regular school as a teacher was depressing! I had no clarity and discussed it with Mohanji. I was passionate about graphic designing and it was something I had just picked up over the years after Mohanji had first introduced it to me with Photoshop. Mohanji suggested that graphic designing or web designing were also good fields for me. The thought of that job was exciting for me and Mohanji blessed me. I decided to take a risk and applied for the job of preferably a web designer else a graphic designer. I won’t say I was an expert at it at all and had no professional training or experience in it. I made a small portfolio, learnt a few tricks from YouTube and started job hunting. My mantra – Mohanji is with me. That’s all that mattered. What happened next was amazing!
My friend Kirti told me that there are openings for the job of a graphic designer in an office near her. I went to apply and found out that they had openings for web designers instead. Now that sounded even more exciting! But again, I had zero experience in web design. I had heard they don’t pay much but I decided to apply anyway. During the interview, we had to design a mock website in 2 hours. Everyone in the room, except me, got 2 hours to do it. The HR person gave me one whole day to make what I wanted to make. It’s uncanny. I like to design at my own pace and being new to the field I was very slow. But the time I got helped me so much. No one else amongst all applicants got a chance like this! They not only offered me a job, but gave me a senior web designer’s position with a much higher salary than the other applicants! It was unbelievable and 100% Mohanji’s grace.
By His blessings, I always got a decent job and salary and focused on settling down in Pune. The energy at the Pune ashram was beautiful and I lived there all alone rent-free for about 3 years. I cannot thank Sainath Wutukur enough for putting this as a part of his donation for Mohanji especially at a time when I needed it the most to settle down. I really wanted that isolation and peace and a chance to be with myself. Mohanji hardly ever visited there physically yet one could immediately feel the high energy upon entering. My cleansing had begun.
I was amazed to see how Mohanji and the tradition had protected me through this rough transition phase through their unconditional support never expecting anything in return. What the solitude in the ashram gave me for 3 years will forever ground me and is truly irreplaceable. Deep cleansing happened to me in the ashram. For the first year, I would simply sit down and cry. I had no idea where these emotions were coming from. But I would simply observe them pass me by. Everything I had taken on from other people, the heaviness, the concepts, the emotions, the blockages, so on and so forth. I would feel myself going through the removal of layer after layer with the challenge of not getting bogged down by the present tests coming my way.
Life was liberating as well as very challenging after that. In the middle, there was a phase in 2014 where things became very tough at work. I started to feel horribly stuck and sad and felt that nothing was working out for me. I have mostly been a positive person, but that was a very low phase. I couldn’t be with Mohanji, do the work I wanted to and had no friends and family around. The Kailash with Mohanji 2014 pilgrimage had been announced and I felt a deep pull to go to Kailash but didn’t have the money or any stability to go. The future was uncertain. Since I was in school, I wanted to be on my own but now I was getting worried about my decision. I was feeling so low that I didn’t know if I had the inner strength to be positive anymore.
One of those days, I happened to speak to Mohanji on the phone. In front of Him, I cannot hide my feelings. Planned or not, everything that I feel pours out. I was sad and heard His voice and started to cry (no, that’s not all I do, promise!) and told Him how sad I was in general and that I was feeling so stuck not to be able to do the things I wanted to do. I could not be with Him. I couldn’t even go to Kailash. That instant He told me in his firm voice that he’s taking me along with him. I told him that I can’t afford the trip. He said, “Don’t worry about that, no thinking is needed from your end. You are going and I am taking you. Period.”
I was speechless. The trip was expensive. I had done nothing for Him or His mission to deserve such an opportunity. I had contributed practically nothing. And He has never asked for anything from me. Ever! His support had always been unconditional. He always wanted to make everybody happy and I thought it was such a gesture. But this costs money. Lots of money! How will I ever repay Him? Travelling with Mohanji to Kailash was the last thing I could’ve expected and wondered what I had done to deserve this. He said it again and asked me to start exercising and prepare for it.
But why did He offer to take me now for such an expensive journey for free and pay all my expenses? I’m deeply indebted to those who contributed and sponsored my trip, I wish I can do the same for someone someday. The Kailash yatra (pilgrimage) is not only a blessing for an individual but also for the ancestors and the entire family. This was purely unconditional and, till date, Mohanji hasn’t asked me ever to pay back for the trip. I didn’t know the reason behind so much grace but all I know is that from the day I met Him in 2009, I’ve just held onto Him through thick and thin. Yet this was clearly something Mohanji did out of His way. Especially when He himself hosts most of His programs for free and has the rest of the programs at just around the cost price.
Again, the reason for this I only understood later. No one goes to this sacred place unless they are called. I was meant to go. The time was right but I had no means to go. But only a true Master knows what’s needed for us and at what time. I needed Kailash at that time to shift my life and open the way forward and Mohanji obviously knew that. A true Guru is only interested to raise you in awareness. He neither cares about any ‘thank you’ nor does He expect anything in return. It’s easy to write this theoretically but to be like that all the time is a rarity. Such masters are very rare.
My Kailash yatra was filled with blessings and miracles. 2014 was the year of Dev Kumbh where one parikrama (circumambulation) equals 12, and we only went for the Outer Kora. My schedule was Kailash busy during those days. While most people in the group had been exercising for months for the pilgrimage, I hadn’t exercised for even one day or prepared for it. But I still managed to complete the Kailash yatra fit and fine! All sheer Grace! Only I know how low my stamina levels were and how unprepared I was for the yatra. Before the parikrama of Kailash began, I did a parikrama of Mohanji to take His blessings. My Guru is the way to Kailash for He himself is Kailash. All is within HIM.
Several other miracles happened during and after the trip. But mostly, many of my life’s blockages went away after Kailash. It was almost like Kailash a new life. Had I not gone there, I would’ve still been living with all that baggage. It’s hard to even imagine that now. I was so passive and wouldn’t always be able to stand up for things or do things I felt I needed to do. I would get emotional at each stage which would disempower me. I wouldn’t consciously take the leap to let go of my fears at that time. I felt insecure because I was on my own. But all this changed after Kailash. Kailash is a powerhouse. It purifies you. To maintain the purity at all times later is our job.
The first year Mohanji went to Kailash with a group, a lot of cleansing happened to everyone after that. So I was expecting something similar in this second pilgrimage too and had a hunch that there would be a lot of tests after Kailash. But honestly, nothing had prepared me for what was to come. Some people close to Mohanji started disconnecting from Him. It starts with having expectations from a Master or putting Him in a frame and judging Him and then eventually leading to negativity. These were people close to me too who I deeply cared about. But they started accusing Mohanji and a lot of His followers, about several things.
The first time I heard of people maligning Him and accusing so many people around him for various things, I was in disbelief. I knew people who were trying to pull Him down and even loved them yet it was shocking to see how they could twist things around. Some completely denied their own experiences and started believing others’ words. The people who doubted their faith and trusted others’ words did not bother to talk to Mohanji directly even once. I was also tested but I could not properly speak up. I was frozen with disbelief. Now I realize that passivity is equal to ingratitude. The one who stays silent when adharma (unrighteousness) is being done is as complicit in the crime as the one doing it. In fact more so, since staying silent when a wrong is being done to someone is akin to stabbing them in the back.
My experience over the years has shown that the time when the mind gets clouded, when you do not want to accept certain things is the best time to ask your GU-RU for light. That’s the best time to surrender to your Guru and he will 110% hold your hand and answer each doubt that you have. You will be amazed how silly such doubts would be. But during testing times, they seem huge. But if you approach Him with ego and accusations as many did, that’s exactly what He will project. Because He is a true mirror. He has nothing to prove. The tradition allows your free will if you’ve made up your mind to disconnect.
There were many who said that they have surrendered to the tradition and the tradition says that disconnecting is the right path. How very funny 🙂 sometimes they say that Sai Baba bought them to Mohanji and once their faith shakes they say that Sai Baba said that there is no need for an external Guru. How can you discard the living Guru in front of you because your mind fluctuates? And never bother to clarify with Him directly? What kind of surrender is this? When all this was happening, I was shocked and saddened to hear the accusations on Mohanji, on so many others and on me. Mohanji told me, “Palak, people don’t understand unconditionality. They cannot imagine a relationship without any hidden agendas.” For years, since college Mohanji had protected me and blessed me. I had numerous miracles of His grace before moving to Pune. I have felt what true love feels like – unemotional, joyful, fearless, empowered, radiating and unconditional – all of this from the time I met Mohanji. My life got meaning since the first time I asked Him my first question. How could I suddenly deny all my experiences?
My near and dear ones are very accepting and okay with my life choices now. There is a lot of love and support from them as well. But when I was tested and life was tough, none of these people were there. None of them could understand what I was going through. None of them were ready to accept my free will. Mohanji, being a true Master knew how tough it was for me karmically and supported my journey. Most of what passes for love in this world is conditional – with expectations. But I have tasted that unconditional love from Mohanji especially when I needed it most and He never expected anything from me in return nor have I repaid Him in any significant way. Right from helping me get independent, stabilizing me personally and professionally, helping me get life skills and being my father, mother, friend and guide through thin more than thick. And I am so grateful for that. I thank Him deeply for unconditionally assisting me in my journey without expectation. I can proclaim this, without a shadow of doubt, that I am today where I am because of Mohanji and I can never be grateful enough or forget that ever.
I end this article with the lyrics of the Krishna Das song – “Mere Gurudev” (My Guru Lord) which sums up my gratitude for Mohanji.
Mere Gurudev, charanon par sumana shraddha ke arpit hai
Tere he dena hai jo hai wahi tujhko samarpit hai
My Gurudev, I offer these flowers of my faith at your feet
Whatever I have, you have given to me, and I dedicate it all to you.
Na priti hai pratiti hai, nahi puja ki shakti hai
Mera yeh man, mera yeh tan, mera kan kan samarpit hai
I have no love, nor do I know you.
I don’t even have the strength to worship you,
But this mind of mine, this body of mine,
my every atom is dedicated to you.
Tum he ho bhaav may mere, vicharon may, pukaron may
Banaale yantra ab mujhko mere sarvatra samarpit hai
You are the only one in my heart and my thoughts.
You are the one who I call out to.
Now Make me your instrument…all I am I offer to you.
With endless love,