Chapter 02: 1970 to 1971 – Opening the Sahasrara

Recollections - Book by Sahaja Yogis

Shri Mataji called the seekers

We lived in Mumbai when I was a child, and my grandmother was very religious, reading scriptures and doing pujas. She regularly went to temples. One time my grandmother went to a bhajans session in a temple and after it was finished she came out.

A lady, who was in fact Shri Mataji, drew up in a car and introduced Herself, and said they had met in past lives, and She was going to start something, and would my grandmother be interested? Shri Mataji gave Her family background, and Sir CP’s job, so as to reassure anyone at our home that it was all right to go to someone’s house.

A few other people had also been told in this way, that Shri Mataji was trying to get the seekers together before the opening of the Sahasrara. After going to Jeevan Jyot, my grandmother came home very excited, saying that she had met someone very amazing. She got a confirmation of this, because I saw someone outside our house, sort of looking at it, and when I described this man to my grandmother, she recognised him as Shri Shirdi Sai Nath, whom she worshipped. When we looked outside again he had completely disappeared.

Anonymous Indian Sahaja Yogini

I am about to start this work

Shri Mataji used to stay at Jeevan Jyot, Mumbai, in 1970 and was known as Mrs Nirmala Srivastava. I asked some girls where Mrs Srivastava stayed and went up.

‘Are you looking for Me?’ Shri Mataji said as She opened the door. She held me by the hand and took me inside very politely and asked me to sit down.

‘Where are you coming from?’ She asked me.

‘I am from Dhulia and I have heard Your name and came looking for You.’

‘Who have you been worshipping, that your vibrations are so nice?’ Shri Mataji asked.

‘Ambaji,’ I said.

‘So today Ambaji has come to you. Here I am in front of you.’

‘I am about to start this work and right now I am waiting for My daughter, Kalpana, to have her baby. Once I am through with that, I will call you. Please leave your name and address before you go and within a month I shall call you.’


How amazing it was

Shri Mataji asked my grandmother to go to Her house, and after a few sessions a group of ten or twelve people went up to Nargol, where Shri Mataji opened the Sahasrara. When my grandmother came back from that she told everyone in our house how amazing it was and how she would get up early in the morning and bathe in the ocean and sit for meditation.

Anonymous Indian Sahaja Yogini

They all felt the cool breeze

After opening the Sahasrara at Nargol on the 5th May 1970, Shri Mataji slowly, one by one, raised the Kundalini shakti of the seekers who came to Her, and they all felt the param chaitanya shakti, the cool breeze, on their fingertips, hands and at the Sahasrara chakra.

Suresh Thacker

Nargol, a holy pilgrimage place for all Sahaja Yogis

Nargol is a small village on the beach about sixteen kilometres from Sanjan in South Gujarat, just inside Gujarat State, and close to the border with Maharashtra. The creek between Sanjan and Umergaon was an active port many years back and was where the Parsis landed over a thousand years ago, and settled in Nargol, Sanjan and other places nearby. The Parsis originally came from Iran, and are followers of Shri Zoraster, an avatar of Shri Adi Guru Dattratreya.

It was on the morning of the 4th May, 1970 that Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi decided to open Her and the universal Sahasrara. She sat in meditation from twelve noon of that day under a saru tree on Nargol Beach and on the 5th May, 1970 at 4.40 am, the ‘Brahma Muharat’, the dawn and the auspicious divine moment, when She opened the whole universal Sahasrara. Shri Mataji has described this in Her lectures, about how the param chaitanya Kundalini entered Her body and the Kundalini, the Sahasrara shakti, was raised. Shri Mataji had gone to Nargol on 3rd May, 1970 and stayed in a bungalow named Blue Heaven, which belonged to Shri Talyarkhan, the Collector of the Bulsar District at that time.

It is said by old local residents of Nargol that when Shri Mataji was meditating, on that night in 1970, four dogs came and sat at a little distance from the saru tree at the four corners and stayed there until the following morning.

Suresh Thacker

A trip to Bordi

We all went from Bombay to Bordi in a train with Shri Mataji. She would talk to all of us and we would follow Her wherever She went. I would never leave Mother, as I wanted to see what She did. I would follow Her and do as She directed, without any question.

‘Look at Raolbai from Dhulia. She always has her attention on what I am doing, not like some others who are busy wasting their attention on some trifling matter,’ She said, and used to call me Rajkunwar.

We were all staying in a school and after dinner She would start giving realisation to people. She asked me to keep my hands under Her Lotus Feet. Mr Modi, who was then the leader, used to understand everything. I personally never understood anything, as for me what She said was it. If She said I was realised now, for me I was that.

She worked on my back like this – the raising of the Kundalini. Then Mother looked very lovingly and sang a beautiful song, ‘Par Brahma Parameshwar.’ She sang so beautifully. That face was so joyous, so loving and so happy. And like this, She gave realisation to four or five people until midnight. The next day She sat alone and called each one individually to give them Self Realisation.


You are fortunate that you saw Me

‘Raolbai, I want you to come to My house tomorrow. All of you who felt vibrations must meditate every morning and evening, so as to go deep and feel them.’

I used to stay with my daughter in a one room apartment and at around 4 am I woke up and I was surprised to see Mataji in front of me in the same position as when She gave self realisation in Bordi.

‘Do you get thoughts by putting attention on Me?’ She asked, when the next day I met Shri Mataji.

‘No,’ I said. Mataji told me that I had attained my thoughtless state.

‘What did you see in the morning?’

‘Mother, I saw You in a meditating pose.’

‘For all the people to whom I gave self realisation yesterday, I was meditating in the morning for them. As you all are new and do not understand, you are fortunate that you saw Me.’



It concerned the 2500th anniversary of the Acheaminid Dynasty. I was talking to Shri Mataji and happened to mention to Her that I was there in May 1971, at the same time as Her brother Baba Mama took Her there as part of Her visit to Teheran, when he worked as accountant for Air India. She immediately remembered the event clearly, when She was talking to a group of archaeologists at the wooden workshop where the throne room had been located, walking around identifying the features.

There was this throne of Indra, who had incarnated as King Cyrus, one of the most revered figures of the ancient world. Later the scientists confirmed Shri Mataji’s indications as incredible but factual according to their research. Persepolis overlooks the plain on which at that time a collection of huge tents were assembled for the celebrant heads of state.

John Henshaw

Shri Mataji praised our every attempt  

This was on my first visit to Shri Mataji’s flat in Napean Sea Road, Mumbai in July 1971. A week or so earlier while in Udaipur, Rajasthan where I was studying, a friend mentioned that he knew of someone who did healing through meditation. I needed healing, but also was desperate to find a guru. This fitted the bill, so to speak. Twenty four hours later, an eight hour bus ride and a twelve hour train journey found me in Mumbai trying to get details of Her address. A week later found me sitting in a taxi with someone who had been treated by Shri Mataji. At last we were on our way to Her place. When we arrived the lady who took me there pointed to Shri Mataji’s flat.

‘Go there and say you are here to see Mrs Srivastava,’ she advised.

A few moments later I was let in by Her servant. Shri Mataji came into the lounge.

‘How are you?’ She asked.

‘Happy,’ was my reply.

She then asked where I was from and I said I was from South Africa. Her next words took me by storm.

‘I will give you My powers and you can go back there and do My work,’ She said.

I sat there gaping. Me, a broken down, battered seeker! Not possible. This must some sort of a joke. But Shri Mataji was so vibrant and beautiful that I stayed put and am ever so glad I did.

Anonymous South African Sahaja Yogi

From ignorance to bliss

 In around October 1971 Shri Mataji was working on my back with Her Feet and I asked what She was doing. Shri Mataji said She was straightening out my Kundalini. My thoughts were, ‘It must be pretty twisted’. But then I felt so happy that someone was doing it for me after all the years of trying to awaken my Kundalini myself. Until that point Shri Mataji had not mentioned much about the Kundalini.

 In those days Shri Mataji never corrected or challenged our beliefs but praised our every attempt to understand and experience our beings. She led us from where we were in our deluded states to our enlightened state, from ignorance to bliss so very gently that we did not realise where we were going till we had arrived.

Anonymous South African Sahaja Yogi

The first public programmes

It was around November 1971 that the first public programme was organized at Cawasji Jehangir Hall in Mumbai and Shri Mataji gave a lecture, and gave realisation to a few seekers.

Shri Mataji established first weekly meditation centre in 1971 at Geeta Bhavan, on the third floor of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Chowpatty, Mumbai, every Tuesday at 6.30 pm. Shri Mataji would be there personally whenever She was in Mumbai. How well She used to take care of us all at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan Centre!

Suresh Thacker

Bring her along

The first time I saw Shri Mataji was in Her house at Jeevan Jyot, in about 1971. I was a schoolgirl at the time. Shri Mataji used to invite people to the house. My mother went to see Shri Mataji quite a few times before I was taken. I used to wonder where she was going. One day she took a photo of me to Shri Mataji.

‘Bring her along!’ Shri Mataji said. I didn’t know where I was going but I was told by my mother that I was going to see somebody, and I had to be quiet when She spoke because my mum had something important to discuss, and if I was quiet I could be taken again.

As soon as we, that is my mother, sister and I got there, we were greeted by little dogs at the door. Apparently they recognised yogis and their bark was completely different then. If a seeker knocked they knew. We were led into a little room at the side and Shri Mataji came in the evening. Immediately She saw us kids She called and asked the cook to go and get something to eat for the children. We were admiring a little carved coffee table, painted white, that was there, and it had been designed by Shri Mataji.

The cook brought in chips and occupied us throughout so we didn’t disturb the talk, and obviously Shri Mataji was working on us through our Nabhis. We always wanted to go back after that! Shri Mataji was forcing us to eat the chips – we would just eat one or two, but She would encourage us to eat them all and said they were for us.

If people arrived and Shri Mataji was in deep meditation, on occasions even Sir CP would welcome them and make them comfortable until such time as Shri Mataji could see them. Right from the start Shri Mataji and the Sahaja Yogis had so much support from Her family.

Anonymous Indian Sahaja Yogini

One would feel Her fragrance

After the first meetings at Jeevan Jyot I was allowed to go to the talks that Shri Mataji used to give near Dadar. There would be sixty to a hundred people. Everyone would come in and sit with their eyes closed and Shri Mataji would arrive. Sometimes She would give a talk and sometimes She would just give an introduction.

‘Close your eyes,’ She would say then, and She would walk around the whole hall and put Her hand on everyone, on the Sahasrara. As She came closer one would feel Her fragrance as She went past us and moved between people. Then we would feel Her hand come on our Sahasrara. After that She would call people up. Everyone would queue up and go to Her Feet. Further on into those programmes Shri Mataji would tell people to check other people’s vibrations. Some people would stand around in a semicircle, and as others came up to do namaskar to Her Feet, the ones standing would check and She would say things like, ‘This one is realised.’ We were too young for that, and just used to offer flowers and garlands to Shri Mataji.

She would tell people about the fingers and the chakras, maybe, at the formal talks, but I was too small at the time. We would check the vibrations with both hands towards the person, but Shri Mataji would be just in front of us and so the attention was through the Sahasrara. She would sometimes touch the person’s back, or tell the person to sit up, with their back to Her, and work on the chakras at the back, with Her Hands or Feet, mostly with Her Feet. If it was the lower back She would have Her Feet on them.

One of the experiences was that if someone had a problem, or if someone was ill, She would actually show us. The person would have their head on Shri Mataji’s Feet, and She showed us how the Kundalini was working somewhere on the back. You could see the skin pulsing, and that was the first time we saw a physical manifestation of what we had felt on our fingers. Shri Mataji explained that wherever there is a blockage the Kundalini goes and clears that.

Anonymous Indian Sahaja Yogini

Jump into the ocean

In the early days, going back to July 1971, we did not know who Shri Mataji was but knew She was great. She allowed us to feel the vibrations coming in at our Sahasrara when She placed Her hand on it and also allowed us to see the golden hue of the vibrations. This lasted until January 1972, then suddenly we stopped seeing the vibrations but continued to feel them. I remember really trying to see them after that but could not and thought I had done something wrong and was being punished. But as time passed we began to see the reality of it and how gradually Shri Mataji was revealing to us the truth of Her advent.

  Anonymous South African Sahaja Yogi

Back from the dead

In December 1971 I fell sick at my home in Nasik and sank into a state of deep anaemia, my entire body having turned yellow with an astoundingly low haemoglobin count of five, normal being about fifteen. I sank into a coma and was rushed by ambulance to hospital in Mumbai with a recovery chance estimated at hardly five per cent.

At that time, by divine providence, Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi was in Mumbai and a close relative of ours took my worried children to Her for Her Blessing. When they told Shri Mataji about my plight, She assured them that She would put Her attention on me and I would be all right in a few days. After two weeks I was discharged from hospital.

Two weeks later I went for a check-up and was found to be perfectly normal and in good health, to the amazement of the doctors. I was put on some strong medicines, but Shri Mataji advised me to discard them all. She warned me that my continued intake of these strong medicines would give me a heart attack at a later date. Ignoring Shri Mataji’s advice and thinking that out of caution I had to take these medicines, I went on for a while till Shri Mataji sent another warning. I then discontinued the medicines, but it was a bit too late.

In 1973 I had a severe heart attack and was rushed to Jaslok Hospital, Mumbai, where I was examined and declared dead, my pulse having totally failed. Shri Mataji was at that time in London. Fortunately, She could be contacted over the telephone. Her attention and Her blessings were given to me from London and I miraculously recovered.

My point here is that it is not very necessary for Her to be physically present. Her collective attention and vibrations travel like lightning to any distance in a very short time. There was a time I needed twenty to twenty-five tablets a day for my health. Today, nearly forty years later, I do not need even a single tablet and enjoy excellent health.

BG Murthy