Eat Rasagulla or Become One
I knew Shri Maharaj Ji was a special personality before I met him. I had a strong belief and a strong faith in that. Somehow or the other I came to Shri Maharaj Ji because I knew that I was being kicked around so much, and I wanted to find an answer.
It was then that it all really did happen. Everything made sense to me. It was then when I understood why Shri Maharaj Ji was given those titles: nikhil-darshan-samanvay-acharya, veda-marga-pratishthapan-acharya, sanatan-vaidic-dharma-prathishapan-sat-sampradaya-paramacharya, etc. He had bridged that gap in me; he made it happen. From that day (even though I had not yet met him physically) I was convinced that I would never leave his lotus feet. He is the one; there is nothing beyond him. And that was that.
During my first visit to Mangarh in the sadhana of 1994, I learnt a great deal from the older devotees. I learnt how to do rupadhyana properly and what it meant to shed tears during sankirtan. I learnt how to build a foundation on feelings of humility, without which, the palace of bhakti cannot be built. The sankirtan was so intense at that time. There were people wailing in bhava right behind me. I had never seen or experienced anything like it before. I started crying during kirtan. There was one I particularly remember: dvara patita ika ayo ri kishori radhe. I knew the meaning: “O Kishori Radhe! I have not brought a receptacle that is suitable enough to receive Your love and I am at Your doorstep. Who else do I go to?” I really cried at that time. I asked Her, “You have to show me the way or else I will be lost. I have finally come here and I believe that I have finally met the right person who is going to bring me to You, then why the delay, O Kishori Ji?” It was a very emotional time for me on that fourth day of my first visit.
Those senior devotees played a critical role in making sure that I understood the philosophy well on that first trip. They were such simple people. One of them used to come to the hall in the morning and chant the daily prayer, and I remember that deep voice; it was really very haunting. From listening to him, I learnt the right way to ask when reciting the prarthana. These are the sorts of things you learn from great people. There were a lot of old satsangis back then and they would share old stories of Shri Maharaj Ji and you would just listen . . .
Now in his mid-forties, the author resides in Australasia and continues to come to India regularly to practice devotion under the divine guidance of Shri Maharaj Ji.
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