When the flower of Guru-love blooms

Anisha Agarwal, October 2013
Sukh mein Guruji ko kabhi bhulana nahin
Dukh mein Guruji sadaiv yaad rakhna
Sukh-dukh jeevan ke do pehlu
Paheliyaan suljhana yahi hai hamare
Pyare Guruji ka aashirwad jo ki sadaa hai hamare paas.

(Forget not Guruji in your joy
Remember him during sorrow
Solve the riddleboth pose
With the blessings of Guruji,
Which are with us forever)

I took my time to reach Guruji because I had heard that VIPs frequented His place. However, my husband insisted and I laid down the condition that I would go only once and would not be pressured to do so again. Yet, after the very first darshan, my apprehensions melted away. Today, I want to go to Guruji every day at the Bade Mandir.

We went without much planning to Empire Estate often. In the beginning, I sat near Guruji's seat. Guruji scolded me and asked me to sit at the back. I cried and, affronted, told my husband that I'd never go to Guruji again. But I soon found myself obeying Him and sat at the back of the hall in Empire Estate or upstairs.

Since I sat upstairs, I never got the chance to listen to devotees' satsangs. And Guruji spoke to me but twice, both times asking for my name.

Darshans in answer to my prayers

But the relationship between the Guru and disciple is not solely dependent on words or material means. In fact, by Guruji's grace, I have had His darshan even after He left His chola.

This came about in miraculous fashion. Saranya, my daughter, would regularly fall ill. In year 2008, she was so ill every month that I had to give her a Crocin every 10 days. I complained to Guruji in front of His photograph-casually, unaware of the hidden potency of His presence in them-saying that He should do something about her.

In the evening, as was usual, I went with my daughter to a nearby park for a stroll. A man, wearing trousers and shirt, approached us and placed his hand on my daughter's head. My mind went blank at that moment. A fortnight later, at the park, the same man walked towards me and my daughter. He said in English as well as in Hindi: "Ye bhagwan ki den hai." I replied, "Ye Guruji ki den hai." He repeated it three times and I made the same answer. Then he said in English, "You are a very wise person." He put his hands together and further said: "Bhagwan aur Guru ka sthaan ek hota hai." (God and Guru share equal footing.)

I didn't realize that I had met Guruji Himself. It was not until five to six months later that I noticed the resemblance between the man and Shri Guru Nanak Dev's representation in the Mandir's sanctum sanctorum.

I had more of Guruji's darshan. I had gone for shopping so that I could try new clothes, required since I was now on the downturn of the weight gain that occurs after pregnancy and was thinner. At one of the stores, I looked at the locket of Guruji that I wore and spoke to Him informally, saying that today He too would shop with me.

When we came out of the shop, my family members and I smelt His rose fragrance. I was very happy and excited. We went home and decided to shop some more. My husband refused, so I went with my daughter to the Select Citywalk in Saket (Delhi). I could feel Guruji's fragrance the whole time I was shopping. I sensed that Guruji was somewhere around. As I turned back, I saw someone who looked like Guruji, wearing a red and black sweater and carrying a shopping bag in His hand! Was it Guruji?

I love Guruji and want Him to be with me always. So much so that Guruji's visitations have happened at the movies, too. Once my son and I had gone to watch, "God, Tussi great ho." As we stood with tickets in hand, I told Guruji mentally that we will watch this movie together. When the movie began I felt Guruji's strong fragrance again and was sure Guruji had come. When I turned around, I saw a person wearing black juttis and a yellow chola-Guruji again. But when I looked for the person during the interval, he was not there.

Guruji takes ill-health away

Guruji has never disappointed me. In November 2009, both my children went down with typhoid and were admitted in hospital. I was with them, and had placed Guruji's pictures in all the four directions of the room my kids were in. The children's illness, however, was testing my strength. But I broke down and prayed to Guruji to manifest His presence in the hospital and show us a way out of illness.

That very day at 2:00 in the night, the maid who was sponging my child, asked me: "Is this Sai Baba?" She was referring to Guruji's picture. I said He was not Sai baba, but 'All God', and I questioned her about why she had asked me. The maid told me she had been to Empire Estate in 2006 for Guruji's darshan. She had been going through a very bad phase. She wanted to work, but would be chucked out of her job every few days. She would stay on rent, but the landlord would evacuate her. She had to beg and support her family.

In 2006 she was in the employ of a lady devotee of Guruji, who took her to Him. The maid narrated that her daughter and she went to Guruji, who spoke to her. Guruji just wanted to know my daughter's name--which is Somwati, the maid told me--and asked that it be changed to Suman. Since the name change, the maid added enthusiastically, her daughter's health had improved.

We understood the divine prompt: we needed to change our daughter's name to Gauri. The maid couldn't go to the Bade Mandir for lack of money. So I gave her a picture of Guruji and told her to pray to Him. I spent a month in that hospital, and Guruji blessed not only my children but everyone: the nurses, neighbouring patients and the many who came asking for His photographs. Even eunuchs in the hospital were blessed after they took His pictures and did His mantra jaap, as advised.

So many photographs were distributed that our home cupboard, which was full of Guruji's likenesses, was empty by the time we returned from hospital.

When the photographs ran out, I gave the locket I wore to a very upset mother of a three-year-old child. Her son was severely asthmatic since birth and had bone loss which interfered with his ability to walk. She was thinking of taking her child away from the hospital, which she did not like. My husband did a satsang with her, and I told her to have faith in Guruji and pray to Him. I advised her to make her son wear the locket or to keep it under His pillow.

In the evening, she came running to my room, crying. Since the time she had made her son wear the locket, she recounted, he had been telling everyone to come and pray to Sai Baba. For the first time, she added, her son had asked for something to eat, adding that he had hardly partaken of a good quantity of food since he was born. Now he was asking for potato and rice. The mother and child continued to stay in hospital and I am sure the child too was taken under His shelter by our beloved Guruji.

Visitations in Varanasi

In 2010, by Guruji's grace we held our first satsang at my father's house in Varanasi. About a hundred people had been invited but fewer turned up. By Guruji's grace, the satsang went very well but all the langar prasad, including the chai, could not be consumed. Since it was summer, the langar could not be kept for a long time, and it was already night. We decided to distribute the prasad at a nearby orphanage.

My kids and I volunteered to go with my father for handing over the langar prasad. It was dark and the street lights were off; it must have been 10.30 at night; and we had to ask a shopkeeper for the location of the orphanage. He told us that it was a five-minute walk. We reached the orphanage gate and knocked, but it took the residents nearly 20 minutes to open the gate.

During this time Guruji gave darshan to my dad in Sai Baba's form. Dad saw a person similar in appearance to Sai Baba, who asked him for something. Dad gave him prasad with shivering hands. As for me, Guruji came in the form of a jet black Shivji with a jata on His head and wearing many malas. He too asked me for some prasad. By Guruji's blessings, we had a small conversation and I saw a twinkle in His eyes. I am sure it was Guruji. Guruji is so very kind. He had the whole of the chai prasad even though it had become cold.

A year later, a lamp lighted on its own at my parents' house. Then in 2012, a day before the satsang was to be held, 'Om' and 'Jai' got engraved on the floor in my dad's house in front of the mandir. They are there till date. My mom was thrilled, and everyone was very happy at receiving Guruji's blessings.

Similarly, in 2013, Guruji showed His presence again in Varanasi. One of the devotees sitting in dhyana saw Guruji walking in our house and giving him 'charano ki sewa'. A staff member who has helped me out during sewa informed me that he was also blessed. This man and his wife had not had a child since the last 10 years. But her pregnancy was confirmed after she had had Guruji's kadha prasad.

I too had many health issues in 2012, but ran elsewhere for a cure, thinking Guruji was unable to help. I did not realize that Guruji never forgets us or our prayers. I am very sorry for that, Guruji.

For example, I had once prayed to Guruji that I become a teacher. This must have been during a visit to Empire Estate. I never recalled it, but not Guruji, who loves us and cares for us as a divine parent. When an advertisement appeared in a newspaper for Montessori teaching, my husband filled the form. I did my training, and Guruji helped me sail through with flying colours when I obtained triple As even though I am an average student.

Take another example. Once He told my mom-in-law: "Main tuhadde ghar awanga" (I will come to your home). But she couldn't invite Him. I wondered why Guruji had made the statement to my mother-in-law, instead of to me. When I woke up the next morning, all the rooms in the house had Guruji's fragrance. His presence was undeniable and, in fact, permeated our house for almost a month. His fragrance would even follow me outside the house when I went to the nearby park. Indeed Guruji has shown us His presence in this manner ample times. My wish that Guruji stay in our house was thus granted, but I also became fully aware that I should not ask Guruji for something undesirable.

With folded hands, I thank my beloved Guruji for giving me such wonderful experiences and blessings in life. May Guruji bless each and every being in His sangat the same way. I pray to Guruji to make me a better person each day so that my life is fruitful and I am more worthy of Him. Whether in this lifetime or next, life will go on with beloved Guruji Maharaj.

May Guruji bless each and every living being in this world. I love Him and miss Him very much.

Anisha Agarwal, Guruji's daughter

October 2013