You cannot force anyone
It was January 1989 and I was living in India. I was at Pratishthan and Shri Mataji started to talk about Indian culture with me, and I told Her I was reading the Mahabharata.
‘You see,’ She explained, ‘that all happened because you cannot force anyone into marriage.’
I think you asked for a name
We went to Pratishthan in 1989 and we’d sit every morning with Shri Mataji and have tea and then work on Her house. I had always wanted to have a name because I had felt that my name wasn’t my name. The first Ganesha Puja that we’d been to was in Los Angeles in 1986, and at one point all the children and infants were called up on stage. I really wanted to go and get a name from Mother, but I could see that no other adults were doing that and didn’t know what the protocol was. But there we were in Mother’s apartment in Pratishthan, so I asked if She would give me a name.
We were sitting with Shri Mataji, and we were very thoughtless. The carpet man came, with a younger man to do all the physical work. It was like being in a sari shop where they roll the saris out, then you look, then they roll out another one. So he’d roll out a carpet. Mother would look at the carpet.
‘What do you think of this carpet?’ She’d say, and She’d look at somebody.
‘Oh, it’s very beautiful, Mother,’ then you’d have to say something else, so you’d say, ‘Well, I see there are beautiful green patterns and white stars.’ Mother would smile, and then the next carpet would get rolled out. She’d look at another yogi or yogini.
‘What do you think of this carpet?’
‘Oh, it’s a very deep red, Mother,’ then the next carpet rolled out.
‘This carpet is from Pratishthan,’ She said, or something like that. ‘Look at the floral design, and this is telling something about the deity. Now see the thread count, this is a high quality one. See the way the knots are tied.’ She started educating us about carpets; it was just so sweet.
There were more wonderful days. Then we were getting ready to leave and Mother was sleeping in Her apartment, so we all did namaskar by Her door and went out to a little twelve-seat minivan to go to Mumbai to catch our flight. Mother walked down from Her apartment to say Her goodbye to us. She knew we were leaving and came down to say goodbye so we could thank Her graciously. She thanked us for working there and then pointed at me.
‘I think you asked for a name,’ She said.
‘Dattatreya would be a good name.’ That was how I got my name.
Shri Hanuman’s mischief
In February 1989 Shri Mataji went to Chorwad near Junagadh, the ancestral home of an old Sahaja Yogi in Gujarat, and he had arranged Dandiya. This is a Gujarati dance performed collectively with batons, around Navaratri.
The songs have a special beat and the lady who was singing the songs had a very nasal voice. We all danced and danced. Later Shri Mataji asked the lady to come and get her realisation. When Shri Mataji raised her Kundalini, she suddenly started feeling very thirsty. So a glass of water was brought for her, but try as much as she would she could not bring the glass to her lips. Shri Mataji asked her what the matter was.
‘Whenever I try to lift the glass I feel someone is holding my hand and not allowing me to drink the water,’ she said. Shri Mataji was smiling with a twinkle in Her eye. She asked her who she followed.
‘Hanuman,’ the lady said.
Shri Mataji then asked her to ask, ‘Shri Mataji, are You sakshat Shri Hanuman?’
The lady started asking and suddenly her hand was freed and she could drink the water. Then Shri Mataji asked her to go and sing. Her nasal twang had vanished!
Later Shri Mataji explained to us that Shri Hanuman is a monkey and so very mischievous. He was angry that the lady could not recognise who Shri Mataji was so he created the thirst and held her hand down.
We were just watching
Sir CP came from the north of India, a place near Lucknow. Shri Mataji and Sir CP lived in Lucknow for some time after their marriage and Sir CP was posted there as a civil servant. At that time Mother met quite a lot of people in the society. One of them was a very renowned doctor in Lucknow.
Later, Shri Mataji wanted to build a house in Lucknow and Her plot was next to this man’s house. He wrote to Mother and Sir CP, without knowing them at that time, saying that he had heard She was going to construct a house and he’d like to help and She ‘would be most welcome to come and stay with us when you build this house.’ So Shri Mataji came to Lucknow and stayed with this doctor for some time while She was constructing Her house. She built this whole house in the shape of a ship because Sir CP was working in the Shipping Corporation at that time.
Mother came to Lucknow in 1989 for a wedding. The daughter of this doctor, whom She regarded as a very good man, was to be married and Shri Mataji was in Delhi at the time, so this was a private visit where there were no Sahaja programmes. Mother was attending a social gathering, a wedding, and we were also going there, luckily enough. She flew from Delhi to Lucknow and, because it was Her private visit, the people who had invited Shri Mataji greeted Her. We were just watching the whole thing.
Shri Mataji stayed with the doctor. When She came for this wedding, She was like a normal family friend of the doctor and nobody there could make out that She was divine. Shri Mataji was participating in all the traditions and rituals of the marriage. In India, all the relatives and friends gather and it’s a big social event.
You could see Mother getting involved in all that, as part of the family. The doctor, his wife and his whole family had such tremendous respect for Shri Mataji. She told us that this doctor recognized Her when She first came to Lucknow. He seemed to be a special person. He had a very pleasing personality and was over seventy at that time, but he didn’t look it. Mother spent the day there and went to the wedding in the evening, and stayed for one more day after that. We got in touch with Shri Mataji and asked if we could have a Sahaja Yoga programme. My father spoke to Her on the phone.
‘Are there some Sahaja Yogis here? Is there a centre?’ She asked. ‘Can we meet?’
‘Yes, Shri Mataji, there is,’ my father replied.
‘All right, I’ll come to the centre.’
Mother came to the centre. It was the initial stages of Sahaja Yoga in Lucknow and hardly ten or twenty were Sahaja Yogis at that time. She saw everybody and talked quite a lot about Lucknow. The next day She went back to Delhi.
Sitting on Her throne
On the same evening as She was flying to Delhi from Lucknow, She had a public programme in Noida, near Delhi. We all went to the airport in Lucknow to see Her off, but the flight was delayed. There was a sofa there and Mother was relaxing on it. She closed Her eyes and someone took a photo of Her while She was relaxing. We all saw Mother on the sofa in the airport, so we thought She was sleeping. This was 7.00 pm in Lucknow.
At the same time, somebody took a photograph of the stage in Noida, at the public programme where Mother was supposed to be, but because the plane was delayed, She had not arrived. The miracle was that when the photo came out it showed that Mother was sitting on Her throne in Noida, at the public programme, watching everybody there. Mother definitely was in Lucknow at the time, sleeping on the sofa in the airport.
A very ordinary camera
Shri Mataji had gone to Lucknow to attend a marriage, in March 1989. When She came back to Delhi, the flight was delayed and we had arranged a public programme for Her in Noida. By nine o’clock Shri Mataji had still not arrived, because of the delayed flight. At nine thirty, She came and addressed the audience, and said She was happy that they had waited so long for Her, and apologised for the unavoidable delay. But Mother is never away from Her children. She is always there.
This point was proved after a few days. A few photographs were taken by Raja Chatterji’s father with a very ordinary camera. When the pictures came out and were printed, Shri Mataji was visible on Her throne, present at the place of the public programme in Noida, at about seven o’clock. In human terms, at that time Shri Mataji was in Lucknow or in the plane. In the pictures Mother was on the stage at Noida, and those pictures were taken much earlier than when She, in Her human form, arrived there. In one of the photos you and see a man in blue jeans winding garlands around the column (bottom left) and two ladies preparing the aarti tray (bottom right). One lady has her back to Shri Mataji on the stage (pale blue sari), and if Mother had been visible to those people, this would not have been going on, because the Sahaja Yogis, and especially the Indian Sahaja Yogis, know the protocol of the Devi.
The Noida miracle photo
I remember this incident. A group of us were painting pots which were used for decorations. Suddenly we felt very strong vibrations as if Shri Mataji was there. Though She was not there physically, but we could still feel the joy and a few of us spontaneously stated singing bhajans. It was after that Chatterji Uncle took the photographs.
We were still preparing for Shri Mataji to come for the public programme, and behind Mother is already sitting on the stage. At this time She was in another town and Uncle, who was addressing the programme, is sitting at Her lotus Feet, being explained something. Later that evening when Mother came to our house for dinner Uncle mentioned to Mother, ‘I didn’t know how I managed to speak for so long, and kept seekers interested in my talk,’ and at that time. Mother smiled and we understood after seeing this miracle photo how She had guided him all through his talk.
Our father had called a cook to prepare food for all the yogis, who would eat after Mother had left. The cook prepared food for a hundred people and nearly 150 ended up coming but the food was sufficient for everyone and even the cook was surprised as to how he managed to feed 150 people.
No wonder, we had added food from the plate Shri Mataji had eaten…
We could still feel the joy
I remember this incident. A group of us were painting pots which were used for decorations. Suddenly we felt very strong vibrations as if Shri Mataji was there. Though She was not there physically we could still feel the joy and a few of us spontaneously started singing bhajans. It was after that Chatterji Uncle took the photographs.
My Sahaja Yogi friends never had that opportunity
Because I worked in the Customs, at Delhi, I was able to see Shri Mataji off very frequently. However, my Sahaja Yogi friends who lived in my neighbourhood never had that opportunity. So once I asked Shri Mataji if it would be possible to bring all the five or six Sahaja Yogi families together to have Her darshan. Shri Mataji readily agreed, and Dr Nigam, who was with Shri Mataji at that time, suggested I should ask if She would like to visit his house for this. This happened, and She came there with about twenty people, and we had bhajans, and She stayed until about one thirty in the night, so we had about five or six hours with Shri Mataji.
The flowers were the right of the ganas
When Mother used to leave for Mumbai, or maybe abroad, from Delhi, She told us something important. Concerning the flowers and bouquets which were given, as many as possible should go with Her. Once or twice people wanted to carry those flowers home for a keepsake, but Mother told us that this was not right, because those flowers were the right of the ganas. They had to be given to the ganas only.
All the stitches were totally cured
My wife was operated on for her gall bladder at Yamunanagar, and about twenty days later we went back to Delhi. She had a number of stitches on the right side of her stomach, and two of them got infected, and did not heal up. About two months after the operation they had still not healed. I was with Shri Mataji and She said I could bring my wife to Her. She went and sat with Shri Mataji, and I left the room. Later my wife came out, and said she had told Shri Mataji about the problem with the stitches.
Shri Mataji put Her hand on my wife’s stomach, on the place of the stitches, and she felt as if snow was just melting inside her stomach. The very next day all the stitches were totally cured.
Dehra Dun recollections
It was in 1989, when the yogis were seeing Shri Mataji off at the Jolly Grant Airport near Dehra Dun. An old yogi uncle, Mr Ashwini Koorich, asked Her if at a given fixed time all the yogis everywhere in the world could meditate, to which She replied, ‘Beta, hum toh Kalateet hain,’ meaning ‘Son, I am Kalateet,’ (beyond time/timeless).
A little while later my dad witnessed a moment that drenched him with love. He had brought flowers from our garden and somehow they were without stems, so while everyone in the line held out their flowers to give it to Mother, he didn’t know how he would offer them when She came close. When She did, She cupped Her hands and he put those flowers in them! She also said, ‘Yahan ke honge,’ (They must be from this region) to which he confirmed and smiled his heart out.
A strong puja
After Birthday Puja in Delhi on the 19th of March, 1989 we went to Mumbai to arrive just in the morning of the ‘real’ Birthday Puja, where thousands of people came. It was a very strong puja. After Mumbai, I was lucky to follow Her to Kolkata.
The Himalayas protect India against all negativity
This is taken from a letter sent from Sita Varda to her family in Europe in 1989.
‘As there was no First Class on the plane, Shri Mataji was sitting with us flying to Kathmandu, in March 1989. What a tremendous feeling to fly with Shri Adi Shakti above Mother Earth, knowing that everything is just Her creation! During the flight Shri Mataji gave realisation to an air hostess and worked on her for about ten to fifteen minutes. One small girl came just to stand in front of our Mother and to look at Her with great eyes.
This is a born-realised one!’ Shri Mataji said. Her parents came to get Shri Mataji’s blessing, then their brother and his wife, et cetera. The aisle became full of kneeling people but then everybody had to go back to his or her seat as we were landing in Nepal. The landing was very hard, as if Nepal’s earth wanted to give a big hug to Shri Mataji to welcome Her in the land of Sahasrara.
Lieselotte and Herbert have got a new ashram, a beautiful, very modern house with a big garden, where they had a small pendal with a big buffet of Austrian specialities prepared specially to please the Nabhi chakra of all the Sahaja Yogis during their stay in Nepal. The same evening all the Sahaja Yogis from Nepal were introduced to Shri Mataji, including two Austrian boys aged 18 and 19, who were exactly one week old in Sahaja Yoga. Shri Mataji was very pleased with them.
‘What a depth – look at their Kundalinis, such great seekers. They must have been seeking for ages,’ She said. Then we had bhajans. In the beginning nobody could be found to play the harmonium – so our Divine Mother Herself took the instrument and played! She not only played the harmonium but was even singing Herself and then teaching Lisa how to play a particular raga. It was really incredible. The whole atmosphere was so joyous.
The puja the next morning, 30th of March, was just beautiful and again very joyous. Shri Mataji spoke about Nepal, or rather the Himalayas being the Sahasrara of the world and how these big mountains protect India, the Kundalini, against all negativity. She said the Nepali people were very religious minded, but very poor people who tolerate too much. After the puja everyone was allowed to present a garland to our Mother’s Lotus Feet and Shri Mataji was very happy about the vibrations of everyone.’
In 1989, we had gone with Shri Mataji to Nepal where we stayed in the house of Herbert and Lisa. Herbert was a very good cook and he wanted to please Shri Mataji by offering Her all the non-veg delicacies, so he made a many course meal. The first one was a chicken delicacy, the next one was a pork delicacy, then came mutton, then duck, then fish etc. He would bring up each one to Her and explain its intricacies. Shri Mataji tasted all of them.
‘He has presented every type of pashu that now I have really become Pashupatinath,’ She quietly remarked. Nepal is famous for the Pashupatinath Temple, which is a very ancient temple of Lord Shiva who is known as the Lord of the animals.
The Lakshmi tattwa
The Easter Puja was at a very lovely place outside Kolkata in the grounds of the Frooti (mango drink) factory. A Sahaja Yogi owned this factory and Shri Mataji herself inaugurated the production of Frooti on the west coast of India just before the puja. It was incredible to see Shri Mataji in between all these juice preparing machines and hundreds of Frooti packs. Directly after this function She was driven two hundred metres to the puja pendal. The Kolkata people had had special florists prepare the place so it was a beautiful decoration with thousands of fresh flowers.
It was a Mahalakshmi Puja, where Shri Mataji explained, amongst many other things, the relation between Lakshmi tattwa and Mahalakshmi power; unless and until our Lakshmi tattwa is established, Mahalakshmi power will not start acting through us. Shri Mataji explained that we have to become like lotuses, fragrant, light, and tolerating even the ugly worms, which may be in the leaves. Not only the ladies – also the men have to become like this.
Shri Mataji spoke about the poverty in the Kolkata region. She said that the people are so poor because the Lakshmi tattwa is not established. People are miserly. They have to show more generosity and hospitality; they have to look after others – then the poverty problem will be solved. Factory owners, or people with money, should also start to be like fathers to their workers. Another remarkable thing about this puja was that Shri Mataji had told the Sahaja Yogi leader, the night before, that Sahaja Yogis could also bring their friends, i.e. non-Sahaja Yogis, to the puja! We were only fifty to seventy Sahaja Yogis.
A cruise along the River Hoogly
During one trip to Kolkata Shri Mataji went on a cruise along the River Hoogly, that is the Ganges, and most of the Sahaja Yogis of Kolkata accompanied Her. It was a trip downstream to the northern end of the Sunderbans. This is the largest mangrove forest in the world and is the Ganges delta – the home of the Royal Bengal tiger and lots of crocodiles and things like that.
Shri Mataji called the married couples to Her and talked to them and blessed them. My wife and I went to meet Her after the meeting with the couples. We were singing, and She asked my wife to sing and she sang one of Ravindranath Tagore’s songs. Shri Mataji was sitting with a keyboard or harmonium, and my wife sang a song about the Adi Shakti, how the primordial energy manifests. Shri Mataji was following my wife on the keyboard even though She had never heard this song before. She also mentioned that Her father was a scholar in Bengali and how from him She had heard many Bengali songs including one popular hit of yesteryear, which translated goes like this – ‘Oh my companion, please hold my hand and escort me, because I don’t know the way’. It is a well-known song in Bengal, and the next year this same song was sung in front of Shri Mataji. Some other songs by Tagore were also sung before Her the following year.
You are already deep!
In the late eighties we were making a trip down the Hoogly River, Calcutta, with Shri Mataji, and She asked that one by one all the Sahaja Yogis went to Her. There were about a couple of dozen of us. My turn came and I was the last to go.
‘Mother, I want to go deep in Sahaja Yoga,’ I asked Her.
‘You are already deep!’ She said. So I bowed down, and She said, ‘Just a little on the Nabhi,’ and She gave me a tap on my back.
Shri Mataji played the harmonium for us on that trip, and a rhythmic instrument as well, a sort of bell.
Shri Mataji looked so affectionately at me
I knew Shri Mataji was very fond of Rabindranath Tagore’s music. Whenever She came to Kolkata She wanted to listen to Tagore’s songs. In the March 1989 Barasat programme I was about eight months pregnant, but I had practiced for two months and selected most of the Tagore songs which are dedicated to God. When I sang in front of Shri Mataji She was very happy and She looked so affectionately at me. After the programme She gave me a beautiful red sari. She told me that if I could sing so well at such an advanced stage of pregnancy, the soul which was coming in would be a very great soul.
Born from the divine
In 1989 there was a puja in Barasat on the outskirts of Kolkata, in April. My wife was singing there even though she was advanced in her second pregnancy. Shri Mataji looked at her and said she was carrying a realised soul, and my daughter was born on the 8th of May. The same year Shri Mataji gave her the name of Divya at Ganapatipule. My mother went to the stage and asked Shri Mataji for a name.
‘She should be called Divya because she is born from the divine,’ Shri Mataji said.
I am there, so don’t worry
On one occasion when Mother came to Calcutta, we were all going before Her at the airport and offering our bouquets, I asked Her when She would come to Barrackpur, where I lived. We had been showing Her some photographs of a festival or fair, where we had had a stall, and She was very pleased with them. I asked Mother when She would come to Barrackpur.
‘To how many places, all over the world, can I go personally? I want to go but… but I am there, so don’t worry.’
It was so joy giving and sustained our efforts, when Shri Mataji said that.