My awakening

Joga Cheema, July 2007 हिंदी
'Je sau chanda uge, sooraj charey hazar,
ithey chaanan hundeyan Guru bin ghor andhaar'

- Shri Guru Granth Sahibji

(Though a hundred moons may rise and a thousand suns dawn,
in spite of their light there is complete darkness without the Guru.)

A flight of faith

My brother introduced me to Guruji in 1995. As I was bowing to Him for the very first time, He said: "Oh, here you are Jatinder." I was taken aback for no one calls me Jatinder though it is my official name. I am usually addressed by my short name Joga and it is only my close family members who know or remember my official name.

I let this pass as a coincidence and sheer chance. Indeed, when I went a second time to meet Guruji, I was prepared to let logic hold more sway. I vividly remember sitting in the upright yoga posture with my eyes closed. Suddenly I felt I was floating above the ground. I reflexively put my hands down and with a jolt opened my eyes. I looked at Guruji to find that He was smiling at me. I realized He had made this short flight of faith possible. Till today I can recall the floating feeling.

Langar and faith

I had been suffering from asthma since the age of three and for the last 30 years I have been on steroids taking dosages ranging between 5 ml and 30 ml a day. This led to complications with my stomach becoming very sensitive. I suffered from gastric problems and allied allergies and was often hospitalized for these as well as asthma and spondylosis.

After I came to Guruji's sangat, slowly my health problems and stress disappeared. I felt increasingly better each time I attended the sangat. I began feeling like a normal human being with the blessings of Guruji. And the healing occurred without any medicines or a prescribed course of penances. Just langar and faith - and I was healthy.

A few years ago my husband had to buy exorbitant Swiss machines for his recording studio. The business was at a critical stage and these machines were essential. But there were difficulties. There used to be lengthy procedures for importing professional audio equipment. Then someone from the overseas company came over to meet my husband and after some simple negotiations facilitated the import of the machines. We did not know that person at all: it was as if he was sent to help us. The company's representative came like a lifesaver out of the blue. We owe the sustenance of the business during tough times only to Guruji.

The sound of music

On one occasion, a very famous Punjabi singer was to come to sing in the sangat. Guruji asked my husband to record the performance. At the venue, the singer's recording equipment was already in place and my husband told Guruji of the fact. He smiled and told him to sit with the sangat and enjoy the evening.

After three hours of singing, Guruji asked the singer to play back the songs. But no sound came out of the tapes. After half an hour of trying unsuccessfully, her sound engineer gave up and revealed that nothing had been recorded. Guruji smiled and looked at my husband and said that he would do the recording the next time she sang. With Guruji's blessing that tape, recorded by my husband, is now played nearly every day in the sangat.

His healing touch

Guruji's methods of giving His blessings are varied, but it is vital that His instructions be followed fully in letter and spirit. My sister-in-law's case illustrates this. She had been suffering from migraines since the age of eight. During one of her visits to Guruji's sangat, she suffered an attack. When langar was served, Guruji offered her two chapattis to eat. She forced herself to eat them. Guruji then gave her two more. She ate one and managed to hide the fourth in her handbag. She soon felt better.

When she visited Guruji's sangat next, she reported that she had been cured by 90 per cent and just a mild migraine remained. Guruji laughed and said that had she eaten the fourth chapatti, she would have been fully cured. She was shocked, since no one knew that she had hidden that chapatti in her handbag.

My father, a retired civil servant, who is also an ardent disciple of Guruji, had a most amazing experience. One day he went to the sangat with my brother. Guruji asked my brother to get betel leaves worth Rs 51 from the market. Guruji then put those leaves on my father's stomach and said that He had 'operated' upon my father. My father was quite perplexed because he thought he was quite healthy.

After a few days, my father passed blood in his urine and had to be hospitalized. The doctors told him that he had cancer in his bladder and operated upon him. It was clear then that Guruji had blessed him. For, had He not operated upon him, my father would not have come to know that there was something wrong in the bladder. Guruji thus cured him before the problem was known, leave alone aggravated.

Yet another incident which left us spellbound concerned a person who had never met Guruji.

We are a dog-loving family and, therefore, the vet was a regular sight in our house. One day the vet came and seemed unusually disturbed. When we inquired, he said his father-in-law was suffering from cancer, which was at the advanced third-degree stage, and they were going to visit him in the hospital.

I met his wife who was waiting for him in the car outside, ready to go to the hospital in New Delhi. I gave her a small picture of Guruji and although she didn't know anything about Guruji but was desperate enough to try anything, she took it. She put it in her father's shirt pocket or perhaps under his pillow as I had suggested. That night her father's condition worsened. But miraculously the next day he was better, and in four days he was released from the hospital!

It seemed as if someone had literally scooped out his cancer for a depression appeared in his back. Soon I was pleasantly surprised to see the whole family come to Guruji's sangat. The vet's father-in-law thanked me profusely. I told him to thank Guruji for He had performed a miracle when the suffering man did not even know Him.

My American children

Since they had been in school, Guruji had been referring to my children as Americans. We did not understand why. They neither had plans to go abroad nor any inclination. But He sees the future. Today, my elder son is settled in Canada and the younger one has got admission in an institution in California. Guruji has also helped my children do well academically. Thanks to His blessings, my younger son was ranked No. 2 in the state-level computer science entrance examination.

In today's day and age, there is tremendous negativity, deceit and mistrust. Diseases are rife. I feel fortunate to have met Guruji, as He has alleviated the pain, suffering and problems of my life and replaced them with belief, health and a keenly felt sense of spirituality. This has given me and my family a deep understanding of life and an understanding of God's wondrous ways. Guruji has a way of making each one of us feel the chosen one and making every day a blessing.

Joga Cheema, devotee

July 2007