Gurudev Sri Sri Ravi Shankar was visiting the United States in the summer of 2015 when I met him at the Newark airport in New Jersey.
Jai Gurudev, My parents had gone to Rishikesh once, as Guruji was there. That day was an extremely auspicious one, which had come after 400 years. Guruji, along with other devotees, were going to take a dip in the holy water of the River Ganges. My relatives Sumit and Dipti had also decided to go to Rishikesh via road because they couldn’t get the train tickets. They were very excited, and all this while I was at home, relaxing on the couch.
Jai Gurudev, My name is Ved Prakash Gupta. I was born on the 7th of November, 1951, at Delhi. I did my Bachelor of Technology-Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, in1973 and MBA, HR from IGNOU in the year 2000. I then joined the Department of Telecommunication,(DOT) Government Of India as a Class-I Officer in the year 1974 and retired in April, 2011, as Principal General Manager(Elect), (equivalent to Add Secretary to Government of India), Head of Electrical wing of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited(BSNL), Corporate Office, New Delhi. The begining of my journey at the Art of Living: In the November of 1999, I got a VVIP pass for attending a Satsang with Sri Sri at Chatarpur, New Delhi.
I feel extremely blessed to get this opportunity to share with you all, a simply Divine encounter that I recently experienced. It brought me closer to my inner self, I realised how fortunate I am to have the presence of a living Master in my life!:) So loved and so blessed!!! So here goes...
It's Saturday night and I'm getting ready to see Sri Sri tomorrow. I just took a hot bath and I'm ready for bed when the phone rings. I assume it's someone from Los Angeles wanting a ride up North to a course, or my daughter calling to make sure I'm still alive. I answer the phone and someone on the other line says: "Dvorahji? Guruji wants to talk to you?" "Me???" I chirp. "Why would He want to talk to me?" Then I suddenly hear laughter: "Dvorah!! How are you?" It's Guruji. I'm speechless but my "brain" kicks in. "Hi Guruji. You're calling Me????"
Today 21 July 2014, is my birthday. On this day, in this very moment, after my morning sadhana, my heart is filled with total gratitude for all that I have been blessed with. With this gratitude, tears flowing from my eyes, I wish to share my story with my Guru. Since a young age, I have always been drawn towards the Divine withvregular visits to our local Temple in the area. I recall spending lots of time praying very hard that I pass my university exams, find a good job and continue my work in the field of human rights, my life long passion. And with the grace of the Divine I was fortunate to have received a scholarship from the US government to further my law studies at a prestigious law school in Washington DC. On my return to South Africa, my wishes were further fulfilled, when I was offered employment by the first democratic government of South Africa as a Legislative Drafter in 1994.
In my unquenchable thirst for Knowledge, I decided to follow Sri Sri around for a while. I wanted to become whatever He was. I went wherever He went, laughed whenever He laughed, sat wherever He sat, and I just hung around Him. Maybe, I just might get IT! (Whatever "it" was.) I followed Him to a retreat in Canada. It was beautiful, and about 200 people showed up. Some of the regular devotees had spent a lot of time with Him. I decided to be one of the in-crowd and began to follow Him around.
Recently, I did an AMC at the Ashram. Normally Guruji gives Darshan to all the AMC participants at the end of the course. This time was no exception either. The Darshan went really well and I was really happy after meeting the Master. I met Guruji once more that week, and I felt that all my questions were answered. It’s such a state of bliss one feels on seeing Him, it’s truly unexplainable! The following week, while working with the Ashram Events & Promotions team, news came that Guruji was going to meet people in the evening. One of my fellow Ashram sevak (volunteer) was the first one to know about it. He was really excited to meet Guruji, as this was his first time at the ashram. He asked me if I could accompany him in the evening at the Darshan queue. I was in two minds. It was only last week that I had met Guruji, and secondly there was a lot of pending work. But still I said a ‘yes’ to my friend, just to keep him motivated. Very soon our day's work was allotted and it turned out that my friend was supposed to visit the city at 4.30 pm, which was precisely the time when Guruji would meet the devotees. And I was given the responsibility of staying back in the Ashram and handling other matters. My friend was really heartbroken, and I felt very sad for him. I even suggested that we switch responsibilities, but that was not approved by our seniors. So we went ahead as per the plan.
This is not a very recent experience but it’s my favorite Guru Story so thought to share it. One fortunate day, I rushed from the office to the airport to see off Guruji but he had already entered the gate when I reached so I just leaned on the glass wall waiting for his last glimpse. I could already feel his presence so strong and intense and as I stopped to look at him, he turned & waved at me and the time froze there and then. I knew that he turned just for me and he started walking, I walked with him. After a few steps, he turned again and to my surprise, he moved towards the exit door and came out. He came out for me, that's all I know and we walked amidst others. I wasn't walking just next to Guruji but I could see him all the time and keenly observing him throughout. Guruji looked towards me, pampered me and patted my cheeks.