Friday, September 11, 2020

"The Unstoppable Guru's Grace" - (By Dr.Usha Garu)

During my 3rd year of dental, I had been to Tiruvannamalai in December when Nanna was also there. Usually, during the months of December, January a lot of foreigners visit this holy place & stay there. Also, there are few foreigners who have settled in Tiruvannamalai for good. They also used to come for daily darshan to Nannagaru whenever he visited Tiruvannamalai. One of them that came from the US & settled in India had changed her name to the Indian name, “Gopika”. She was very fond of Nanna.

My Birthday being at the same time of the year, and also being in Nanna’s presence, I have made a decision not to celebrate it. We celebrate birthdays because we think we are the body. Also, the birth & death of the body isn’t real. The actual birth is when the individual soul is born and death is when the soul completely dissolves. When the soul dissolves, we awaken into the supreme consciousness. A great Guru has come into my life & showed me that I am the supreme consciousness & not the body, so I thought I should practice losing my false identity this Birthday.

Gopika requested Nanna to give permission for Christmas celebrations in the Ashram, as he would leave a few days before the actual Christmas date, saying he was their Christ! She wanted to celebrate it in his presence as that was more important than the actual date itself. She requested a date convenient for him for the celebrations. Nanna told me to bring the calendar so as to fix a date.

When I got it, he looked at it and said, “How about 18th December Usha?”.

I replied, saying any date that is convenient for him will be fine with everyone. Then he said, “Let's keep it on the 17th, rather than 2 days before leaving the place as it would be apt.”

I stayed silent as I didn’t want to be recognized on that day & wanted to remain in solitude. I behaved as if it didn’t really matter to me.

Gopika announced to the foreigners that Christmas celebrations will be conducted on 17th December in the presence of Nanna. All of them got their own decoration material to decorate the hall & stored it in Andhra Ashram priorly. On the 17th, early morning when we sat in Nanna’s presence for his first darshan of the day, a couple had come from Chennai with two huge packets of chocolates. The chocolates in them were in multiple bright colors with a ‘Happy Birthday” message on them. It was unusual and surprising, I had never before seen chocolates with such a wish on them.

Nanna looked at them with amusement too & handed it over to me saying “Usha look at this, so wonderful & unusual. Happy Birthday, distribute them to all in the hall!”. After distributing them he said again, “How wonderful those Happy birthday chocolates are!” & smiled. He told me to keep the remaining chocolates for myself.” Later that day after his meals, he again said “Weren’t those Happy Birthday chocolates really nice?”. I nodded my head saying they were nice. I felt like laughing because I knew he was testing my resolution. 

I have given some chocolates to Gopika as she was very dear to me, and she put them in her bag. That noon when we were all busy decorating the hall for evening celebrations, Gopika pulled out 2 chocolates from her bag & gave it to me wishing me Happy Birthday! I was surprised & asked her how she knew it? she didn’t actually know but did so naughtily imitating Nanna. She got amazed and said “OMG! so it’s really your Birthday today! You are like my daughter, I wish you many more happy returns, see how divinely these sweets arrived in the morning, God loves you so much!” and kissed me. I told her not to reveal this to anyone & to forget the matter completely for which she nodded.

On the same day evening when Nanna came down into the hall for celebrations, all the foreigners that assembled got their own musical instruments like guitar, violin, harmonium, flute, and so on. They sang Bhajans on Lord Rama, Krishna, Bhagavan, Shiva & Nataraj as well as played the instruments with immense devotion. This went on for 2 hours non-stop and all devotees in the hall along with Nanna were ecstatic.

After they have finished singing, Nanna said he would now sing the song.

“Oh God Beautiful!” and told us all to sing after him. The verses followed like below: 

Oh God beautiful, Oh God beautiful, Oh God beautiful! I do bow at thy feet 
Thou are green in the forest, thou are high in the mountain, 
Thou are restless in the river, thou are grave in the ocean, 
Thou are sympathy to the sorrowful, thou are service to the serviceful, 
Thou are bliss to the yogi, thou are love to the lover.- (Paramahamsa Yogananda)

Moving his head & hands harmoniously, later lifting his hands above with great excitement he sang the song for long, making us sing after him. Since I have always been a nature lover, Nanna singing this beautiful song indicating all of nature is God, released tremendous joy within. Some devotees in the hall cried out of devotion, some went into ecstasy. Immense holy vibrations filled the whole hall and his aura remained for a long period.

Gopika had brought a homemade 3 layered cake with “Happy Birthday & Merry Christmas” written on it. Nanna looked at it & read aloud the wishes. Gopika, unable to withhold the secret blurted out, ‘Nanna, it is Usha’s Birthday today.’ Nanna smiled amusingly and made me cut the cake, by holding my hand with his & fed me too. Overwhelmed by his love I had tears of gratitude flow continuously.

Later, he told Gopika to read the "Sermon on the mount" chapter from the bible (the mountain talks). This blew me further into ecstasy, as it was just a few months ago since I had the vision of Christ. I wanted to forget the date, occasion & myself that day and here Nanna was constantly wishing me from morning 6.00 AM to 7 PM. He was celebrating it on a grand scale by wishing, giving chocolates, singing bhajans & he himself singing the special song by making us sing along, having me cut the cake, feeding, and reading the most profound chapter by Jesus as we were celebrating his birthday (Christmas).

My joy & gratitude knew no bounds, so I kept crying uncontrollably for a long time & finally fell at his feet with utmost reverence. I was so overwhelmed that I remained at his feet endlessly and gradually a deep silence seeped in and occupied my entire being. The silence was so loud and profound that I became empty & lost body consciousness. I knew nothing, how & what had happened. It was like Nanna’s magic erased the body bound 'I', I remained as the pure witness lost to time. I planned for no recognition & to make an effort to lose the body sense, but God & my Guru was celebrating it totally with huge pomp and finally pushing me out of existence with ease & filling me with the holy spirit (true self). I didn’t imagine this consequence.

When after a long time I got up & did pranams, he said ”God’s compassion is enough for you, you don’t need anything else. You have been blessed with it completely this life!”

God’s compassion can’t be explained or expressed. It's beyond comprehension. If we lose ourselves, what is left is his love only. His compassion erases all that isn’t us. So creation disappears, and we remain in a state of oneness where there is nothing but grand silence & peace! I remained in that state for very long. Later gradually things came to be normal and after a long time, I regained my senses. He made me forget everything including birthdays. In such unconditional divine love, how can a soul survive without dissolving? Dissolution will happen naturally and effortlessly, that's the beauty of surrender.

When a Devotee sees the glory of God and experiences that great love, what else will impress or attract the soul? What can be more glorious in this world or elsewhere? Though you seek nothing, he shall bless you & decorate you with his love & shall take pride in it too!

(Like a mother decorates her child & gets overwhelmed)


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