Sri Sri has once again gifted me with yet another beautiful Guru story – a memory for a lifetime.
Well, it had been more than 4 years since I had done my first course. Ever since then, I had seen the pictures of Bangalore Ashram and heard loads of experiences of devotees, especially from my brother. I had this strong desire to go there. I knew that my mother would not give me the permission to go there so easily. In fact, I had asked her several times, but she refused to let me go. I had been praying really hard to Guruji to make this dream of mine, of visiting the Ashram, come true. Many a times, I would look at His photo and say to Him, “I know my mumma would not allow me to go, but I will wait for the day when you would invite me to the Ashram, miraculously.” Finally, the Divine conspired the same.
I had planned to go to USA and had applied for visa the previous month at Delhi. I was rejected at that time because of which I got really disheartened. My visa counsellor suggested me to apply again at the Chennai consulate within few weeks. Though I don’t believe much in astrology, but this time I went to an astrologer and he suggested me to take up the date of 16th August for the main interview. While booking the tickets, I realised that my fingerprinting appointment was for the 14th and main appointment on the 16th. So I had the 15th of August as a spare day, as it was a national holiday, Independence Day. I dared to ask my mother again to allow me to go to the Ashram for a day, and this time, she allowed me!
I reached the Bangalore Ashram on the midnight of 14th August. I just cannot express in words the gratitude that I felt at the doorstep of the Ashram. I got to know at the reception that around 11,000 devotees from Kerala itself had come to visit Guruji, so, the Ashram was packed. The following day, I woke up early and went to visit the VM and had the most wonderful Sadhna (Practice) session there. Thereafter, I began my treasure hunt for Guruji’s Darshan. The Secretariat team refused to take any appointments. I tried to explain to them that I would be in the Ashram just for 7 hours and needed to meet Guruji, but nothing seemed to work out. None of the people around knew about Guruji’s schedule for that day. He kept on playing hide and seek. I would keep missing Him each time. Finally, fully exhausted, I prayed to Guruji saying that I didn’t know how He would make it possible, but I knew for sure that I wanted to meet Him personally, and give Him my love letter (I had decorated the cover in a very fancy manner so as to allure him from a distance), my gift and to take His blessings for my visa. After a few minutes, I saw Guruji’s secretary and he told me that Guruji was going to attend some function at the Ayurveda hospital.
So I reached there quickly. It was situated on a hilltop and had one of the most beautiful panoramic views that I had ever seen. It was all dazzling with the preparation of Sri Sri’s arrival. Guruji came there soon with some dignitaries. He saw the envelope I was holding and His eyes twinkled, just like a 2 year old child’s! He came near me and gestured that He would take it from me later on. He performed the Pooja (Prayer), inaugurated the operation theatre and then came on the stage and addressed the audience. I luckily got to sit in the second row. He looked at me and blinked His eyes in such a cute manner, as if acknowledging my longing to talk to Him. After the function ended, I almost ran towards the exit. I still don’t understand how but for a minute, there was a space among 500 people, where there was no one else except for me and HIM. I gave Him the letter and told Him that I had my visa interview the next day, and HE blessed me!! On that day, He fulfilled even the slightest desire that had crossed my mind!
The following day, before my interview, I prayed to Guruji to enter into the visa officer’s body and grant me the visa. Amusingly, throughout my interview, the visa officer was smiling, just as Guruji does, and the conversation with him went so smoothly and nicely. He granted me the visa in just 2 minutes!
I am sure that there must be a Guru story attached to every devotee’s first visit to the Ashram. It is just so amazing to know that He loves us all so dearly.