This is my humble attempt to express in words a phenomenon which is truly indescribable. Mahavatar Babaji is not a man or just a Guru. He is a phenomenon.
Even the name Babaji, which is commonly used in India to address many spiritual Masters, cannot ever explain or convey the phenomenon that we call “Babaji”. Since we have to depend on a name to make others understand whom we are talking about, we shall use the name Babaji.
Babaji is beyond any intellectual understanding. He is beyond words and thoughts. He is beyond all kinds of spiritual theories and experiences. Any form or picture that is attributed to His image falls short of His stature. He represents the formless. But, He assumes the form that is in your mind, when ever he chooses to convey a message, just to let you know who is talking!!! A formless Master can choose any form, as long as it is necessary. Human mind, addicted to form, cannot be satisfied, until a convincing form is attached to a message. Otherwise, even if the message is truly relevant to the receiver, it is discarded as data or message born out of a suspicious origin. In order to satisfy this need, Babaji has appeared in forms understandable to the receiver, while in fact He remains formless. I realized this truth, in the most practical way.
This write up is about my experiences/impressions of Babaji. Even though I had questioned my eligibility to write about such a Maha Avatar (Great Incarnation), I thought that my experiences might help at least a few seekers in the path of spirituality.
There are many in this world who have had direct experiences from this inter-galactic Master. Each one’s experience could be unique and different. This is quite natural, because each one has different levels of evolution, eligibility and different levels of understanding. Hence, comparisons have no value. Please keep that in mind, as you proceed further.
The Mystery called Babaji
My First Introduction to Babaji – In This Life
Most people came to know about this powerful, omni-present Master through the great, outstanding and living literary accomplishment by Paramahamsa Yogananda called “The Autobiography of a Yogi.” This was the case with me too. My first introduction to Babaji, in this life, was through this great book by Yogananda. I read the book many years ago, that is, in mid 1990s. I read about various Masters and was fascinated about them. Nothing more.
In 2000, my only daughter Ammu passed away, which brought immense sorrow into the life of all my family members including myself. That was the year that I visited Himalayas, for the first time. Haridwar, Rishikesh, Tapovan… – dips in the Holy Ganga were indeed purifying. Meditating in Vasishta Cave, meeting and talking to real saints and sadhus, who wanted nothing from me, was quite refreshing, especially for a man like me, who has always been dwelling in the commercial world of hard competition and severely conditioned relationships. People do not meet people without profits attached!!! The unconditional love of Himalayas was quite refreshing and promising. It created a new hope in me. A new purpose. It triggered my spirituality. It pushed me into a completely different path, which I was quite unaware of, till that time. The path of subtlety and power. The path of truth. The path of SHIVA.
Himalayas enchanted me so much. I could never resist the temptation of visiting Himalayas every year hence forth, which I continue till date. I still do so on Ammu’s death anniversary, every year.
In 2000, I met Mata Devi Vanamali, the Divine Mother, who is compassion incarnate, a great devotee of Lord Krishna. She adopted me as her spiritual son. She lives in Tapovan, near Rishikesh, on the banks of river Ganga. She told me “A son does not need permission to visit his parent’s house. This ashram is the same for you. You need no permission to come here. This is your home too.” Thus, I found my “home” in Himalayas.
Even though each trip brought me many new revelations, I was not consciously searching for Babaji. This thought was not even existing in my mind.
In 2002, I visited Badrinath temple along with Mataji, which is almost 16000 Feet high up in Himalayas. Oxygen is less in such heights and I was experiencing breathlessness. It was very cold too.
Babaji’s abode is supposed to be near Badrinath Temple. I was not aware of that. Now I realize that Babaji is everywhere and He does not stay just near Badri. However, an interesting encounter with an unknown saint happened there and I consider that to be an encounter with Babaji, even though I am not sure. Does it matter? Well, it happened as follows…
On the night we arrived, when I looked up in the sky, above the temple, I saw a round bright object in the sky. It looked like a Flying Saucer – a UFO. In a way, one is to expect many strange or indefinable things in Himalayas. So, I took it for granted that aliens could be visiting great Masters in Himalayas. I have heard that some of the great Masters meditating in Himalayas are not from earth. So, sighting an UFO was quite a possibility, as far as I was concerned.
In the morning, I realized that there is a mountain behind the temple, which is invisible in the night, and there is a small hut on top of this mountain. I could not see any roads going up to this hut. I asked Mataji and she said that an old saint lives there. I could not fathom the possibility of an old saint meditating so high up in the mountains, in such cold conditions. I wanted to meet him, but primarily due to my health conditions, and because I could not find any way to climb up there, I discarded the wish as an impossibility. We stayed there a couple of days and, on the third day, we decided to leave Badri.
Mataji told us that we will leave after the morning prayers in the temple. That day, the temple was packed with people. Mataji was allowed to sit right in front of the sanctum sanctorum, and I got into the fourth or fifth line behind her. From where I sat, I could easily see what was going on inside the temple. The prayers and rituals had started and everyone present was chanting mantras. There was high energy and great elevation. Suddenly, an old and frail man came to the door and walked through the crowd straight to the door of the sanctum sanctorum where Mataji was sitting. Everyone gave way. Mataji moved to one side and he sat down beside her. When I saw him, I felt great hidden power inside the old frail body. He was very thin, almost like a skeleton. I sat observing this man and the ritual. When the prayer ended, everyone got up to leave. The old saint walked past me, looked into my eyes and he suddenly caught my right hand in a strong grip. I can still feel his grip, whenever I remember this incident. He held my palm for a few seconds, amidst the crowd that was pushing and pulling us, and suddenly left it and walked out. He disappeared immediately and we could not find him anywhere. I could not understand this saint nor could I understand why he caught my palm in a strong grip like that, stared deep into my eyes, and disappeared so quickly. Everything was so mysterious.
When I came out, Mataji was waiting outside. She said “This trip is so blessed because I could sit next to this Great Yogi.” I told her what he did to me. She exclaimed “You are very lucky. He is a great Yogi, who stays away from human contact.” I asked her “Who is he?” She said “You had wanted to meet this saint who lives on top of the mountain behind the temple. That was him. Since you could not go there, He came down to see you. Such Masters always fulfill the sincere wishes of seekers.” That was such an overwhelming experience for me! It was a kind of a deep revelation. Gratitude filled my heart, like never before. Was that Babaji? Who knows? I never saw Him again.
The Babaji Boy
In 2004, I faced yet another crisis in life. I had to relocate from Oman and underwent many material losses and associated agonies. I also lost my job and was reasonably insecure about everything, except spirituality. That was the time, when I came to know and meet a man who was in constant communion with Babaji. Since I do not have the permission to disclose the name of this person nor his whereabouts, I just call him Babaji boy.
I first spoke to him, when he was visiting India and was at a friend’s place. When my friend told me that Babaji boy was in his place, I felt a deep urge to talk to him. I was in Dubai at that time, and my friend’s house is in India. When I told about my wish to my friend, he said “Oh, you are wasting your time, Mohanji. He does not even look at anyone, let alone speak. He is always in meditation, night and day.” That did not put me off. I still insisted and my friend finally took the initiative. I called at a particular time when Babaji boy was close to a convenient phone and my friend took my call. I could hear him telling something to Babaji Boy about me. I heard him say “Mohanji is calling from Dubai. He is a great soul. You must speak to him”, and gave the phone to Babaji Boy. I heard his voice for the first time. Even before I could say “hello”, he said ” Om Sai Ram…Om Sai Ram…Om Sai Ram…” three times and disconnected the phone. Suddenly, I felt something entering my head – it was like a bullet piercing my brain. Excruciating pain. Severe head ache followed. I could not even see anything clearly. Somehow, I managed to reach home and decided to sleep. I could not do anything else.
August 15th. It was one week after he ‘spoke’ to me. I was going to India. I knew that I will be meeting Babaji Boy and was reasonably excited about it. I bought some high quality “dried date fruits” and as soon as I landed in India, I tried to meet him. It was not easy. I met my friend who was hosting him and he dampened my spirits when he said “Mohanji, it is not easy to meet him. He lives in a house, which is about an hour away by car from here. He always meditates and communes with Babaji. He never speaks to anyone. Does not even look at people. Does not eat much food. Maintains silence and does not come out of his room, unless essential.” I still insisted on seeing him. Finally, he surrendered to my persistence and soon, I was on my way to his abode. So many thoughts were going through my excited mind. I was like a child on the way to Disneyland.
When I reached his house, I was expecting a maid or house keeper to open the door. Before I could ring the bell, Babaji boy himself came and opened the door. My jaw dropped. I did not know what to say!!! I just stood there, looking at him. He broke the silence “Mohanji….Welcome”. I tried to explain who I am and why I am there. He cut my attempt quite abruptly and said “Babaji told me that you are coming. I was waiting for you. I have to give you something. Come with me.” My heart started beating faster. I walked with him into the living room of the house. I had the dried dates with me. I handed that over to him. I said “This is for you and Babaji”. He took it without any expressions. I thought he did not understand. I took it back from him, unwrapped it, and gave it back to him and said “These are special dates, for you and Babaji”. He said abruptly “I understood” which was a hint that he was not interested in formalities. He gestured me to take the seat opposite to him. He sat down too.
He said “Listen to me carefully. Yesterday night Babaji told me that you will be coming. He told me about you in detail. I know everything. I know the problem that you are facing with your meditation. Babaji says that “You should split your mind into two and go in between. You will reach your destination.” Babaji asked me to teach you a mudra (a sign or a particular way to join fingers to achieve a desired energy flow), which will empower you further.” He taught me and patiently perfected this mudra.He made me do it many times, until he was satisfied. Then, suddenly, he said “Let’s meditate together.” This was indeed unexpected. My friends were waiting outside and I had promised to be with my parents before sunset. Moreover, my friend, the host of Babaji boy, had told me that, once he starts to meditate, he will come out of it only after a few days. What will I do? I tried to meditate for about 30 minutes. I saw that Babaji boy had gone deep into meditation. I prostrated at his feet and left for home. That was a wonderful day for me. I was excited beyond limits. Babaji knows me and has indeed given me a precious, life changing mudra through his disciple!!!. I felt that this was indeed a great leap in my spiritual life.
An Awareness Shift
The next day, there was a public function in my neighborhood. This was a function intended to honor people who excelled in charity service or selfless service. I was also honored at that function by a celebrity, for charity acts/ initiatives conducted through Ammucare, the organisation that I founded in 2003. However, my interest was not the award. My interest was that Babaji boy may be there at the function. This was another opportunity to spend some time in his energy field. As soon as I reached the venue, I went indoors, searching for him. I found him sitting with his eyes closed in a room at the far end of the stage. There was nobody else in the room. I sat next to him. When he felt my presence, he opened his eyes, looked at me briefly and closed the eyes again. He did not show any kind of recognition. I sat there and mentally conveyed my apologies for leaving him without proper good byes. I tried to convey telepathically, the following message “I am so sorry. I had to leave early yesterday, without telling you. I did not want to disturb you, because you were deep in meditation.” A few seconds later, he suddenly opened his eyes and said “It is okay. No formalities”. He got my telepathic message and responded verbally!!! This was truly amazing. My connectivity with him was clear to me and it is working!!!. Suddenly, a strong vibration, like a storm started within my body. As I was sitting there, I realized that I cannot move. I was feeling paralyzed. Energy started forming like bubbles inside my stomach region, rising like bubbles of soda water inside a glass. I felt a lot of bubble-like energy forming, moving and bursting inside my head. It was not scary though. While all of this was happening, my conscious mind and active senses were also recognizing my state and the program that is happening outside this room. A subtle awareness was there that my name will be called anytime to come to the podium for the honoring. The awareness that I cannot move my body as well as the awareness that something drastic is happening within me consumed me completely. I was highly expanded and was witnessing the happenings inside my body as well as the speeches and proceedings of the function outside. I do not know how long I sat there. I was hoping that Babaji boy will rescue me, and help me reach the podium the moment when my name will be called. He did not do anything. He looked as if he was in a trance state too. I was definitely in a trance state. Suddenly, a saint who was sitting on the stage, rushed into the room where we were sitting, without saying anything to both of us; he gently brushed his hand over my head and quickly went back. Within seconds, I became normal. At the same time, my name was announced and I managed to walk to the stage while they were describing the activities of Ammucare for the poor and helpless. I went on stage, received the honor and was about to go back when the chief guest asked me to say a few words. I could not. I was in a different state. I just expressed my sincere thanks and gratitude for the honor with limited words and mostly through body language and quickly came back to the room where Babaji boy was still sitting. He was in the same state and did not even acknowledge my presence or my movements in the room.
The Parting and the Priceless Gift
I could not spend much time with Babaji boy afterwards. Soon enough, I came to know that he will be leaving that place soon. One evening, I was sitting, chatting with my parents, when a phone call came. I was surprised to hear the voice of Babaji Boy. He was abrupt, as usual: “I am leaving tonight. I would like to meet you. Can I come over for dinner at your place?” I was so pleased with this proposition! I immediately invited him. He arrived by car. As soon as he entered the house, he asked me to take him to the room where my parents have kept the altar and the lamp burning. There are many pictures and idols there. He stood silent in prayer for a few minutes. He called me and showed me his picture of Babaji. I know that for him, this picture was like a link or connection to Babaji. He would never even show this picture to anyone – he considers it so sacred and personal. He always carries this picture with him. He said “Babaji asked me to give this picture to you.” Oh, what a surprize that was! I knew that this picture is priceless. It was as if Babaji Boy was giving his own life to me. I was deeply honored and humbled by the love of Babaji. Without any emotions, he handed over the picture to me and said “Take care of this. Babaji will speak to you.” I could not believe all that happened in such a short span of time. I wondered about my eligibility for this love and grace. What have I done to achieve all this? Only Babaji knows. Anyway, I was indebted and overwhelmed. Babaji boy had his dinner with us and he left the same night. I never met or communicated with him ever again. I felt as if Babaji boy was sent by Babaji himself to guide me to His path, and left after accomplishing this task. He accepted nothing from me in return, except perhaps the dinner, which certainly has no value compared to the blessings that he showered on me. He subtly taught me many things. He changed my constitution, without articulating it. Thus I encountered another selfless soul. My path was getting clearer. I was beginning to understand my tradition and the purpose of my existence. The picture that Babaji Boy gave me is still with me, on my altar – a priceless possession…
The story will continue…..
Love You, M