Tuesday, April 29, 2014

The next door yogi

Five years gone...
It's a step by step gathering of wisdom, agony, joy, pain, suffering, happiness, stillness...
I stepped out of home for wandering.
It was not planned. It was not spontaneous.
It was a guided journey!
The wandering was by invitation. 
The invitation was through disappearance of my father.
My great father left the house on the morning of June 4, 2009 for never to come back home.
I was awake at 5.45 am that day. Got the feeling that he is not in his bed. Came out of my bedroom, he was quietly sleeping in this bed. I went back to sleep. At 6.15 am again got the intuitive message that he is not in the bed. I woke up. Went to see him. He was not there.
I went to the balcony, asked the watchman to look for my father. He said he is not downstairs, where in the garden he used to take his morning walk usually. 

Then started the great search.
Many vehicles move in different directions to look for him.
Friends and relatives searched the locality relentlessly.
Posters and notices pasted on the walls.

But in vain. No trace of him.
Then the police were reported.
They suggested to look into the dead body house of the government hospital.
Every morning and evening, the ritual of dead body search started. 
The keeper of the dead house would parade me in front the racks that hold the bodies. 
He would open faces one by one in the dim light. The faces darkened, young and old, with scars, pale, lifeless, stinking... 
With negation I would walk behind him after every body being searched. 
I would give him some money for his help. 
It went on for days & weeks.
While the eyes were searching for his body, feet were walking in his search, thoughts were jumping to the higher dimension.
Is this body the human existence? 
What's the use of life and it's comforts when each human has to meet the fate of the dead body in the dead house?
What's the significance of karma, when a pious man like my father must be suffering somewhere despite his able relations around?
What's the meaning of relations?
What are human bandages? 

My consciousness had already transcended to a next level. 
Then the search for him became mechanical process.
Then slowly it started becoming aimless wandering.
Then the result oriented effort seized. 
Started then the amusement of experiencing the universe without any goal in mind.
Business started getting hampered. 
There was no interest in attending office activities.
All started appearing mirage. 

Still the push by materialistic considerations was on.
Pre planned visits to various countries were  to happen.
As a part of this, went to Ghana in west Africa.
There happened miracle!
Deep spiritual calling!
Aggregation of contemplative thoughts resulted into one divine moment that changed dimensions of life.
Then it was all light! 

Came back to India, went to Shri Lanka, but the urge to earn had died.
All that was happening was a curious wandering. 
From malls, to hotels, to shopping streets, to temples, to Buddhist temples, to the churches, to the mosques, to the sea shores, to the river banks, to the paddy fields, to the mountains...
Everywhere life was seen in abundance.
No attachment anywhere. 
So it was witnessing. Beautiful witnessing.

Came back to India.
Wandered the South. 
Then to the north. In the trains, in buses, by walk, in the trucks, taking lift in the cars...
Penniless journeys.
People would feed.
They would care.
They would scold.
They would shoo away as beggar.
They would taunt.
They would offer physical labour.
They would get surprised.
They would experience calmness in the presence of a bearded man.
Some would put their palms before, requesting to read. 
I would read with my limited knowledge.
Then would give some advise.
People started believing.
Some would consult for family issues.
Some would bring alms confirming that my remedies have worked.
Some would donate money.
Rituals were done for people, meditations taught, knowledge breathing practices imparted, counselling sessions done, blessings were given.
All that knowledge that was imparted by my parents & brother came handy!

So the wanderer Arvind assumed the role of Yogi Arwind, in a flow.  
Without any directed efforts.
The religious community of various sects of babas, yogis and swamis got in acquaintance. We sang the bhajans together. We danced with divine euphoria. We dipped in Ganga. We meditated together.
Some would respect and offer higher seat to sit.
Some would deny the higher seat.
Some would force to smoke Chillum.
Some would get inspired by my non-smoking.
Some would say I am a born yogi.
Some would say I am fake.
Some would question my religious affiliations.
Some attempted on life twice out of ignorance! 

Journeyed from South to North. By walk. Barefoot. By bus, by train. By air. By any means.
Walked on the desert barefoot. Walked on the snow barefoot. Ran on the stones on the banks of Ganga barefoot. On the cemented road, tar road, walked barefoot. In the filth and in the gardens, walked barefoot. Walked barefoot in the crematoriums, cemeteries. To the temples.

Beautiful souls steadily crossed the path while walking.
On the peak of Mount Parashar in Himalayas met one exceptional sadhu who passed on the light. In Mandi in Himachal, met the Narayan himself in the form of the sadhu, Shiva walked with me on the banks of Ganga. Secret knowledge was passed on. 

Miraculous programs were conducted. Leher Leher Kabir happened. Yogi Arwind Foundation was formed, clean Ganga campaign was launched, awards for Ayurveda and environment were given, knowledge camps organised, health camps were organised, free food distributed, blankets distributed. Retreats organised.

Amazing wonderful souls supported all the way. Divine arrangement was, make a wish and money and resources will come. And the yoga of friendship was established, Maitrā Yoga! Now that 1800 days consciousness workshop is over.

As Nisargadatta Maharaj says, 
"Stay without ambition, without the least desire, exposed, vulnerable,
unprotected, uncertain and alone, completely open to and welcoming life as it happens, without the selfish conviction that all must yield you pleasure or profit, material or so-called spiritual."
Literally lived these lines!

Now the identity is thickening. 
The journey that started with evaporation of various identities like of Son, brother, business person etc has reached at the new identity of spiritual person, a yogi. This obviously brings the religious colour in the minds of people.

And the identity brings ego with it.
So obvious ego and arrogance is developing.
That beautiful connect is missing and getting covered under this identity.
Heart has become like stone in the process of restraining emotions.
The flow of love is getting blocked.

So it's a warning bell. 
It's an invitation -
to the next phase of journey.
To that shading of ego.
To dropping down the arrogance.
To be in the service.
To be ordinary.
To be a commoner again!
The next door yogi.