On His birthday, a gift for us

Navin Sharma, July 2007 हिंदी
Even as I write this, tears blur my eyes when I see my son. He wants to know how much time it will take me to finish my office work.

He doesn't know that this work has nothing to do with my office, but with him. For it is a recountal of how he got well and I must go back to 2001 to begin. My son, Shantanu, was then just three and a half years old and seemed to be having seizures. Doctors assumed that these were due to what they termed "night terror" and gave my son's problem no further thought.

However, between December 2001 and early January 2002, Shantanu suffered two more such fits. Neurophysicians got a plethora of investigations done and it was established that my son was suffering from some form of epilepsy. Immediately, his treatment began. Despite the medicines, Shantanu always appeared lost and fearful.

Then on Guruji's birthday - July 7, 2001 - we had His first darshan. Thereafter, we got His photographs. Whenever it would seem that another seizure was imminent, we would keep Guruji's photograph near Shantanu. The danger would pass the moment we did so.

Then Guruji left for Punjab. We were left feeling helpless and miserable in Guruji's physical absence. We decided to visit Him at Jalandhar in the middle of January. After darshan, He invited us to join the sangat at the house-warming party of a Guru bhai. It was then, at the door of the mandir, that my wife told Guruji about Shantanu's illness. He just said, "Kyon (Why?)" and immediately added that everything was okay. He then gestured to us to follow the rest of the sangat to the party. We felt He hadn't heard us properly.

Later when that glorious evening was coming to an end, we took courage and decided to approach Guruji once more. On my insistence, my wife went to Guruji. She had not got more than a few words in when Guruji warned her that we would be dismissed forthwith if we mentioned our problem again. We were frightened. But, before the sangat left, Guruji announced that the Delhi sangat could stay back and come to the mandir the next evening as well. We took heart from the fact and felt that He had forgiven us.

Upon our return to Delhi the next morning, we decided to stop the medication of our son - much against the advice of those neurophysicians treating Shantanu; my younger brother, a practicing psychiatrist; and his gynaecologist wife. We left everything to the will of Guruji.

Shantanu also played a part. He had by then turned four and would sit in front of a calendar which had Guruji's photograph and pray: "Mujhe theek kar do" (Please cure me.) Guruji answered his innocent prayers and cured him. By His grace and blessings, Shantanu has never since suffered any epileptic seizure and is as fine and naughty as any eight and a half year old can be.

My eyes again blur with tears.

Navin Sharma, devotees

July 2007